V/A - Celestial Blues 2LP (BGP)


V/A - Celestial Blues 2LP (BGP)

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2015 was the year jazz hit the mainstream again. The catalyst for this was saxophonist Kamasi Washington’s 3CD masterpiece “The Epic”, influenced by the symphonic, spiritually aware jazz of the early 70s. “Celestial Blues” is a compilation that shines a spotlight on some of the music that may have influenced “The Epic”.
The ten tracks range from the evidently spiritual – such as Gary Bartz’s classic ‘Celestial Blues’ or Joe Henderson & Alice Coltrane’s astounding collaboration on ‘Fire’, to less obvious but just as relevant recordings by drummers Roy Brooks and Joe Chambers.

Charles Earland’s contribution bears a remarkable resemblance to ‘Henrietta Our Hero’ a stand-out track from “The Epic”, whilst Carlos Garnett and Azar Lawrence’s mix of saxophone, strings and voices could be a template for Washington’s whole sound. The compilation is completed by fine examples of the era’s jazz from Hampton Hawes and Bayeté Umbra Zindiko. Oliver Nelson’s ‘Aftermath’ is an apt closer.

01  Celestial Blues - Gary Bartz NTU Troop

02  Fire - Joe Henderson & Alice Coltrane

03 Warriors Of Peace - Azar Lawrence

04 Brown Eyes - Charles Earland

05 The Free Slave - Roy Brooks

06 The Alomoravid - Joe Chambers

07 Let Us Go (To Higher Heights) - Carlos Garnett

08 Let It Take Your Mind - Bayeté Umbra Zindiko

09 Josie Black - Hampton Hawes

10 Aftermath (Edited version) - Oliver Nelson