[Dixielandjazz] Ben Ratliff (NY Times) Waxes Nostalgic

David Richoux tubaman at batnet.com
Sun Dec 26 16:09:20 PST 2004

Hi all,

Since I do a traditional jazz show at a radio station (kfjc.org) that 
is known for presenting the most extreme forms of "music" I get to hear 
all sorts of unusual forms of music that might be called jazz by some - 
it now really is a catch-all term for improvised, "real instrument" or 
"electronic-turntable-computer plus real instrument" music that can 
have either roots in various historical themes or be nebulous 
spontaneous creations - whatever this 21st Century is going to be, the 
term "Jazz" will still be around.

One of the recent CDs we received is from a Belgian group called Flat 
Earth Society or FES - they are a 20+ member orchestra that digs back 
to the early days of jazz but takes it to extreme  modern levels. There 
is a New Orleans Dirge, a few swinging stomps and a lot of other 
oddities. I KNOW most of you on this list will probably run away 
screaming, but maybe some might actually enjoy hearing what is 
happening outside the sphere of TRAD OKOM. One of their CDs is an 
exploration into the heart and soul of Louis Armstrong: St Louis Blues, 
Memphis Bound, Black and Blue, Perdido Street, Little King Ink, Lucky 
Ol' Sun, Caravan, Plenty o' Nuthin, WWW and a few more! I have not 
heard all of it yet, but I am waiting for a shipment from Euro-land 
(and taking a big hit from the weak US$.)

The CD we have is a collection of their early work on a US label Ipecac 
( yes, vomit inducing, I know...) called "Isms" and they also have a 
website at www.fes.be  where you can hear a few samples of their other 
CDs. Amazon has the Isms CD with short samples.

I bet they would b a fun group to see live ;-)

Dave Richoux

On Dec 26, 2004, at 2:42 PM, Charles Suhor wrote:

> One interesting thing about this is the implicit maybe explicit 
> recognition here that fine modern jazz doesn't have to be reaching for 
> something entirely new. I think we're hard-wired to respond to 
> improvisation that's firmly anchored in song structure. We get that 
> with early jazz, swing and modern jazz, up to but not including 
> free-form jazz, where dependably recurring underlying patterns are 
> gone. Ratliff isn't asking "Where's the next Coltrane?" or bemoaning 
> the fact that no new trails are being blazed in the best two CDs of 
> the year. Too bad that so many in the wide-excritics don't take 
> another step and acknowledge today's OKOM players by bringing this 
> appreciation of good-jazz-now to premodern jazz players.
> Charlie Suhor
> On Dec 26, 2004, at 9:10 AM, Steve barbone wrote:
>> Below are, according to Ben Ratliff, NY Times Jazz Critic, the TOP 2 
>> Jazz
>> Albums released in 2004. Maybe not quite OKOM, however they are both 
>> very
>> interesting picks.

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