Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Wayne's Blues To Come

"When I was growing up, black connoted gloom, skepticism, no hope, no foreseeable way out of the muck and the mire. And the blues then to me were centered around gloom and darkness, too. The old blues and funk were good for their time and place, but what I'm trying to do now is to get the meat out of the old blues while also presaging the different kind of blues to come. In this particular piece (Charcoal Blues), I'm both looking back at the good things in those older blues and also laughing at that part of my background. The laughter is satirical but not mocking. It's laughter from the inside. During the earlier periods of the blues, moreover, you'd get to where there seemed to be a point of no return. Things were so bad that the only way to go was to laugh - that kept you going. There's some of that, too, in 'Charcoal Blues.' "

Wayne Shorter, Composer, Saxophonist.

Charcoal Blues, recorded by Wayne Shorter on Duke Ellington's birthday, April 29th, in 1964, appears on the album Night Dreamer. Widely acknowledged as a classic, Night Dreamer was recorded during the same period as the phenomenal Jazz Messenger's album Indestructible. Both sessions feature Lee Morgan on trumpet and Reggie Workman at the bass. By the end of that same year Shorter would join Miles Davis, making his debut as a member of the now mythic quintet of Hancock, Carter & Williams. The first recording of this group can be heard on the album Miles in Berlin.

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