I’m at work trying to decide what to do about the Swiss job (the offer is so-so, and they’re rushing things a bit too much for me to feel comfortable), compiling a UML editor for Linux, and listening to “Concierto de Aranjuez” from Jim Hall’s Concierto. It’s a sad, beautiful, and romantic song composed by Spanish composer Joaquin Rodrigo Vidre between 1938 and 1939, and performed by Jim Hall accompanied by a stunning Jazz supergroup formed by Chet Baker, Paul Desmond, Roland Hanna and Ron Carter. It doesn’t help my already blue mood, but it’s definitely a masterpiece.
New category, first entry. I have been thinking for a while of writing about Music, but the difficulty of writing on non-technical arguments in English has always prevented me from doing it. A few minutes ago, listening on blackark.com to the splendid Melting Pot by Boris Gardner, I decided it’s the music that counts, not the words. If somebody comes to love Reggae Music by reading my recommendations, and if I discover new artists and new songs, it’s worth cutting a poor figure with English.
Not much to say about Boris Gardner, apart from knowing his name by having listened countless times in the past to Elizabethan Reggae, his 70s classic. I tried on Google, but did not come up with much apart from the definition Jamaican Funk which appears to suit him well. The undisputed master of Jamaican Funk is Toots Hibberts of Toos & the Maytals fame, one of the greatest of Reggae Music.
Melting Pot appears to be included in the compilation 200% Dynamite by Soul Jazz Records, a small London-based record label with a very interesting catalogue and a retro look. The compilation explores the links between Reggae, Jazz, Funk and Soul including some of the greatest reggae musicians of the 70s, like Augustus Pablo, Toots, Jackie Mittoo, Tommy McCook. A single CD is a very limited space to include the wealth of talents Jamaica has produced in the 70s, but IMHO it’s impossible to explore the Jazz roots of Reggae without including Ernest Ranglin, Jamaica’s greates guitarist.