Archive for Basel

Documenting Don Redman’s 1946 European Tour

Posted in documents, Don Redman, jazz with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 25, 2012 by crownpropeller

Page 2 of Don Redman concert review in swiss  “Film, Radio Jazz” magazine No 1, 1947.
From the Otto Flückiger Collection

Ever since the day i wrote this post about the 1946 european tour by Don Redman and his orchestra, I had the pleasure to work with the very fine jazz researchers such as Leif Bo Petersen, Anthony Barnett, Howard Rye, Mario Schneeberger and Dieter Salemann to make the story complete. With the help of jazz fans and researchers from different european countries and the USA we tried to gather all the known information about this tour in one place. In doing so we were able to correct a lot of misinformation  – discographical and otherwise – that has been around for some years now. Private as well as institutional collections allowed us to use their material including many rare photographs, newspaper ads, concert reviews and other related articles.

Tyree Glenn in Geneva, Switzerland,  photo probably by Freddy Bertrand.
From the Otto Flückiger Collection

You can see the results of our work (and hear some very interesting music!) if you go to the Don Redman’s 1946 European Tour page. Of course this is a work in progress, If you feel that you have something to add to the story, it would be nice if you would use the comment section over there.

Ad for the Bern concert, unidentified newspaper.
From the Otto Flückiger Collection

An Interview with Abdullah Ibrahim (1995)

Posted in Abdullah Ibrahim, clips, Interview with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 22, 2012 by crownpropeller

Back in 1995 I had the chance to interview south african pianist Abdullah Ibrahim (formerly known as Dollar Brand), on the day before his concert at the Musik der Welt Festival in Basel. Originally my friend Buffo, who worked as a photographer at that time, and me were to talk to Ibrahim in his hotel room, but because the hotel had noted him down as “Ibrahim Abdullah” they did not realize whom we were trying too reach for about thirty minutes. So we arrived at his room door rather late. Ibrahim was nervous, because his wife Bea Benjamin was due to arrive any minute, so he asked us to come to the rehearsal in Radio Studio Basel later in the day.

A few hours later, after a short verbal hustle with the studio’s doorman we finally met Ibrahim,  who stopped the rehearsal to talk to us for about an hour, while sitting at the piano. Continue reading

Matthew Shipp Trio in Basel 1998

Posted in clips, jazz, Matthew Shipp with tags , , , , , , , , on December 18, 2011 by crownpropeller

Correction (12/22/2011): The date of this concert has been established as march 26th (Thanks, Hubi!).

Since 1984 the Taktlos Festival has been presenting “improvised and contemporary music” in several swiss cities, mostly offering formations from the european impro-music scene.  And from time to time they have groups in the program that could be defined as representatives of the Great Black Music continuum. One of the most impressive performances that I saw in this regard was the apperance of the Matthew Shipp Trio  featuring William Parker and Susie Ibarra in March 1998, a performance that kept me sitting on the edge of my chair. Luckily my friend Otto as always had a camera with him …

Continue reading

Pharoah Sanders, Basel 1999

Posted in clips, jazz, Pharoah Sanders with tags , , , , , , on December 11, 2011 by crownpropeller

Going through Otto’s videos I found footage of Pharoah Sanders playing at the Kulturwerkstatt Kaserne in Basel in autumn 1999. If someone out there knows the exact day, it would be nice if you could let me know.

I am not 100 percent sure about the personnel, but it looks like the others are:

William Henderson: keyboards / Alex Blake: b /Hamid Drake dr.

Of course Hamid Drake is a definite. Please excuse the rather rough edits,  it looks like the missing footage is lost.  Enjoy!

George Johnson live in Basel, 1950

Posted in jazz, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on August 7, 2011 by crownpropeller

On some day in late August 1950 my friend, the late Otto Flückiger, took his Webster Wire Recorder to a house at Greifengasse 3 in Basel. There on the first floor was the Tanzcabaret Odeon where George Johnson and his band were supposed to play this evening.

The Tanzcabaret Odeon in Basel, unknown date
(taken from http://www.altbasel.ch)

Continue reading

The Don Redman Orchestra Basel 1946

Posted in Don Redman, jazz with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 25, 2011 by crownpropeller

Update: This posting has become a little obsolete, for the full story of Don Redman’s 1946 european tour go here.

REVISED ENTRY: The title of Track 6 has been identified.

The 1946 european tour of Don Redman’s orchestra looms large in the memory of european jazz fans of a certain generation as it was the first opportunity to have a first hand experience of the recent developments in american jazz. Although Redman had no genuine Be Bop musicians in his band, there were a lot of creative spirits in it that did not miss the revolution that Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie had started. And with For Europeans Only Redman had even brought a Tadd Dameron composition with him. It has to be said though, that not everybody liked what he heard though. And people who did like what they heard were sometimes thrown out of their own Jazz appreciation societies and Hot Clubs because of their “progressive tendencies”.

In 1983 danish company Steeplechase published the September 15 concert from the K.B. Hallen in Copenhagen:

and in 1999 swiss company TCB released a part of the October 27 concert from Victoria Hall in Geneva (on the sleeve it reads “Eictoria Hall”):

Recently I found some more music from this tour in Otto’s archives. These come from the October 31 concert at the Küchlin Varieté in Basel, Switzerland.

The Küchlin Varieté in Basel, unknown date.
Photograph from http://www.fdb.ch

I have decided to put all of the surviving music from the Basel concert up here, as I think it is historically very important – and the rather bad sound quality robs it of any commercial value it might have. Continue reading

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