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Log In Sign Up. Independent Researcher , Independent Researcher , Curator. Although Morocco difers greatly in respect of Libya, especially in terms of historical develo What emerges here, and elsewhere in Future Imperfect, is a vivid picture of multidisciplinary and independent spaces supporting artistic practices and research within and beyond political patronage and the market. Save to Library Download Edit.
Pour le Journal of Film Preservation Madrassa is a programme of curatorial research and practice in contemporary art. It is one of the It is one of the first of its kind in the region. Christophe Van Huffel, ex-guitarist of Tanger, has recently worked producing legendary French singer, Christophe. He is based in France. I like the way the package presents a stern countenance explaining very little, assuming that we all know the parties involved; already the release feels like an odd riddle.
Two songs on the A side.
The main attraction to the listener is the singing-intoning voice of the lead fellow, who may be the French half of the act. Cracked and dusty his vocal cords be, whether through mannered device or naturally desiccated, trying to convey the effect of a dissolute and broken man. Just right for followers of Wm Burroughs we might think, but this sort of prose-speak-sing also shades into areas once occupied by Nick Cave or Michael Gira, as does the lugubrious and dense content. The lyrics are highly ambiguous, even when they seem straight to the point and use plain English at all times.
I like to hear multiple repetitions of slightly mysterious phrases in songs and Purity Supreme does this trick very well. The second song is slightly more recognisable as something a weary Lou Reed might have recorded at any time between and , and with its basic guitar and drum sound could almost pass for any decent slab of indie art-rock music.
On the flip, even more words and more repetitions in the two remaining songs. So many words, these songs are more like recited poems or short stories really, very much like a slightly nastier Tom Waits or what we might hear if Charles Bukowski turned his throaty husk to song. Indeed the words are privileged by appearing in full on the front cover. Narrators alluding to scenes unknown, to backstories we cannot know, and delivered with a snarling curl to the lip at all times.
Quite unusual, muscular, and opaque music from these offbeat modern beatniks. But in Paris, at least, record-shops are unanimous in declaring that his first records were hit by poor sales, and his name is certainly one of those least known to the public, even thosewho are "well-informed" or believe themselves to be so.
In , on his return from America, Robert Goffin spoke of him only as a mysterious character, albeit one whose influence over the 'new sound' everybody recognized as decisive. His originality is extreme. His lucidity doesn't imply coldness; rather a sort of perfection that goes against the grain, exasperating, with not even the excuse of being lyrical or mechanical.
It allows me, at the risk of interpreting this deliriously, to situate Thelonious Monk—no doubt he's alone among the great jazz musicians I love—on an ethical plane "over and above good and evil", obviously. I mean that with Thelonious Monk, the aesthetic value of the elements constituting jazz piano is immediately established as an autonomous value, having something of the nature of that unique category of universal relationships where dialectics oblige us to situate the Absolute.
This perfection, which can be sensed in the "old" arrangements of Thelonious Monk, like Ruby My Dear and Evidence with Milt Jackson, John Simmons on bass and Shadow Wilson on drums is by turns adorned, in all the most recent sides early like Criss Cross and Eronel, with its ironic prologue, Four in One, Straight No Chaser, by a brilliant cruelty and a dawn-like freshness. Thelonious Monk, as well as Milt Jackson, becoming more assertive as the best of the young vibraphone players, is here in the company of Al McKibbon b , Art Blakey dms and Sahib Shihab it must be a pseudonym on alto sax, whose choruses are weak, but whose unison playing with Milt Jackson is a revelation.
We can still expect a lot more from Thelonious Monk. The provocative dryness of the Sphinx's smile transpires in this music, whilst the slivers of wood and steel in its environment have the thrust of serpents, and its harmonies the tonic acidity of lightning. The support of the latter shows remarkable precision throughout. The first of the four sides is typically humorous: for around a quarter of the recording,Thelonious plays with a deliberate, extremely insistent retard in the tempo, and then he lands on his feet like some tiger-cat thrown up in the air.
The arrangements are not as clean as in the series with Milton Jackson, but I wanted to draw these discs to the attention of fans of this most "secret" of modern pianists. He plays terribly well, this high priest Monk: you must have these records just for him and for Art Blakey on drums, too. When will the great Monk be really appreciated?
Excellent records: among other things, "Skippy" includes an excellent solo from Monk. It's not possible to speak of a "Monk school. In parallel with the fall, at least in appearance, of its glories, the consolidation of more modest talents can't be denied. We have never known so many musicians who are very good.
Without going back on the hatching of personalities like Getz, Cohn, Sims, Eager, Stewart and Moore, all of them Lester's grandchildren, you have to consider for example the increased mastery of a pianist like Monk. Monk, of around twenty other artists, has bettered his technique constantly, and perfected his language at the same time. They are delicate works, pieces with an extreme melodic freshness, bop that has become subdued.
But that last word brings us back to the heart of the crisis. Since we only have sectors of calm to indicate, it's because creation is now no more than transformation. The drama in this is the absence of all emergence…. Two months later the original article appeared in The Record Changer, November :.
It has become fashionable to think him a greatly overrated musician, something of a charlatan, a mystic whose very mysticism is calculated to conceal a rather prosaic flaw: poor musicianship.
Léa Morin | Independent Researcher - benohaderpha.ml
That is utter nonsense. There is no doubt that Monk is a man without conventional scope, without the sense of the opportune, devoid entirely of the deft imagination which Dizzy Gillespie turned into an even more valuable property than his talent, by capitalizing on the physical oddities of the bop school, with great good will and ingratiating theatrics. I have a choice here between writing about Monk as he is, or as he seems to be, and is generally thought to be.
He is undoubtedly a very selfish man this quality, too, is not at all unique among artists , and the business of having the world revolve around him has caused him to see things in a remarkably direct fashion—very much in the manner of a child. In this way, the formality of wearing clothes is inexplicable to a child, just as the formality of musical structure is inexplicable to Monk.
I think that some subtle facet of his mind realizes that he has this quality, and that he cherishes it. There are a couple of remarkable Calypso bands in New York, playing a real powerhouse music which is closer to Harlem in than Trinidad in any year. Monk fussed with the piano, discovering that it was a pretty venerable instrument when he sits at a piano there is a dead key on it—no matter how recently the thing was in perfect condition.
A little later, I became aware that Thelonious was doing something extraordinary—tying his shoe or waving to somebody under the piano; as I watched, mesmerized, I saw that he was yanking at the pedal post with all his might first he kept up with the band by reaching up with his right hand to strike an occasional chord, but he had to apply himself to the attack on the post with both hands, and get his back into it, too.
There was a slight crack, a ripping sound, and off came the whole works, to be flung aside as Monk calmly resumed playing. It was obvious that here was a new experience, something outside the ken of a rational man; for the rest of the evening he looked upon Thelonious with a new respect.
A necessarily iron constitution is supported by a six-foot, pound frame, which he drapes in double-breasted suits exclusively, most of the time with the coat unbuttoned. Before he had completed the necessary ceremony of bench-adjusting, pedal-testing, and coattail-draping, the audience was in a state of prostration.
This was not a matter of stage presence, or lack of it; only a perfect sample of the deportment of Thelonious Monk. At any rate, this man, unmalleable, exasperating, sometimes perverse to the point of justifiable homicide, is the man who casually formed the nucleus of the group which surprised itself by changing, at least temporarily, the direction of jazz. That was ten years ago. Inside, though, there is an atmosphere hard to find anyplace else in New York; an ease, a lack of the professional gimlet-eyes nightclub bandits, whose only salable commodity is an obsequiousness available to one and all, for a small consideration.
There have also been, at various times, a dapper waiter named Romeo, who was as likely to dance for the customers as bring them drinks, and many young musicians working for a living; in they include Kenny Clarke and Thelonious Monk. In fact, as he tells it, he was playing essentially the same way he does now in , when he was fifteen years old. His conception is not something that grew out of what he felt was a need for something new in music—he just played that way.
His ear was hearing between the lines of its own accord, and that nonconformist ago told him that what he heard was perfectly valid.
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Time seems to have borne him out. I doubt that either of them, or anyone else, knew what they were doing, saw anything momentous on the horizon, or even cared particularly. The complex personality which makes his behavior unpredictable has made his music stimulating to gifted and receptive men like Parker and Gillespie; that personality is unchangeable, the stimulus is unfading. Any new enterprise requires a certain personnel to be vital: several people who grasp because their sophistication tells them that here is a direction their machinery is admirably suited to travel in, and at least one who is here because he is unable to do anything else, the man with an honest germ of an idea.
Monk fits neatly into the latter category; not a virtuoso, but a creator. Well, what is his product? It is something quite fragile and intangible, like the quality in the stories of Virginia Woolf and Gertrude Stein.
In fact, there have been many times when Monk has offended delicate ears with his pianistic assertion that a theme is a theme. The identity of a tune is like the identity of a word—it remains itself only as long as it is scrupulously kept in its proper place, with its proper emphasis; a great many ingredients go into recognition of either one. Because of it, he is a provocative musician, one with whom other musicians play well—sometimes better than they ever have. Recognizing that he had something beyond a reputation to offer, Blue Note Records, a firm of almost suicidal integrity, decided to take the plunged and make some records with him.
The idea bore fruit in more ways than one, because they immediately discovered a whole uneaten side of the evil apple which is bebop—young musicians, without reputation, who were following the avant-garde Gillespie and Parker circles, and bringing with them something of their own.
Eau et assainissement :
Alfred and Lorraine Lion and Frank Wolff were, for a time, father, brother, moral support and employment agency for Thelonious and his crew, and there were some fantastically messed-up moments for all parties during the time the records were being cut. That was a perfect unit, unlike any other, before or since; they played no tunes but their own, in no way but their own; they did more rhythmically, than any musical group I ever heard anywhere; and they kept improving until the inevitable break-up came, after too short a time. Monk is likely to be as jarring a departure from Dizzy Gillespie as Dizzy is from Louis, and yet he may hit you right away.
An open ear is a wonderful thing. Reproduced in The Thelonious Monk Reader.
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