Week ending 16 November 2018: sounds unexpected

We like to think that by clicking the MixCloud tab and listening to Cosmic Jazz you will find something unexpected – including a few surprises for jazz lovers.

Something unexpected prompted an opener to the show from Sounds of the Unexpected. They are a Norwegian band led by a British sax player, Tim Lowerson. The sounds are exactly as they promise and you would find them difficult to categorise. Something unexpected for Cosmic Jazz, thoughhas occurred as a result of our contacts with Tim, namely a mention for the programme/site in a Norwegian magazine containing an article on Polish jazz. We are there and recommended as somewhere to find and listen to Polish jazz. We feel honoured and thanks to all concerned.

Similarly, we must acknowledge Steve’s Jazz Sounds as a source for music from Poland (and beyond) and we recommend a visit. Following this we had to play some Polish jazz: a new release from a trumpeter who has produced and directed at least nine albums. Piotr Schmidt has a PhD in music from Katowice and also received a scholarship to Kentucky. The album has a clever title Saxesful, amazing no-one has thought of that before and he is a trumpeter!

Harold Lopez-Nussa is a Havana-based pianist leading a trio which includes his younger brother. There will be more tracks from his album on the show, but there was a repeat from last week, as that show did not do justice to the tune.

We do like to promote small, independent labels and artists who may not get wide exposure. Birnam is a company based in Scotland that supports and provides access to recording for Scots and other artists. We received from them recently an album that vocalist Evelyn Laurie made and released herself. This is her first album and has been the culmination of many years of hard work. Her first singing appearance was at the age of four in Arbroath. She’s sung in many styles from folk, to choral to opera, but around twelve years ago began her training in vocal jazz and has since  performed around Scotland. The album A Little Bit Of Me has several delights and her version of the tune Close Your Eyes is a highlight. The vocals are warm and the backing instrumentation is pared down but still clear and definite with lovely percussion from Tom Gordon.

We have said so much on this site about the British group Maisha whose spiritual jazz with global influences is highly recommended to hear live. Their long-awaited first album There is a Place has now been released and is highly recommended to all our CJ listeners. The band is led by drummer Jake Long and includes percussion, sax, bass, guitar and keyboards – superb musicianship all round, but let’s single out Nubya Garcia on sax and Shirley Tetteh on guitar.

Neil has been persuading me for some time to play new music by Sarathy Korwar which he sent me. I love the title of the album My East is your West – and I love the music. This is music that honours a relatively long tradition of fusing of Indian classical music with the jazz tradition – and it really works. Recorded live at London’s Church Of Sound, the album is a homage to the great musicians of the 60s and 70s spiritual jazz movement, covering the likes of Alice Coltrane, Pharaoh Sanders, and Joe Henderson. Korwar plays alongside the UPAJ Collective, a group of highly versatile musicians who share Sarathy’s passion for jazz and Indian music and include CJ favourite Tamar Osborn on baritone sax. The featured tune this week is their version of Joe Henderson’s composition Earth, which originally featured on his excellent duo album with Alice Coltrane, The Elements. There will be more.

In a show of longish tunes there was still space for another tune from Anthony Joseph from his new album A Place in the Sun. Recorded in Trinidad and Tobago, and released on the excellent French label Heavenly Sweetness, there are really strong tunes and the opening cut Milligan (The Ocean) is one of them. UK jazzer Jason Yarde is on sax and labelmate Florian Pellissier is on keyboards.

  1. Sounds of the Unexpected – Sounds of the Unexpected from Sounds of the Unexpected
  2. Piotr Schmidt Quintet – Stella by Starlight from Saxesful
  3. Harold Lopez-Nussa – Une Tarde Cualquiera en Paris (to Bebo Valdes) from Un Dia Cualquiera
  4. Evelyn Laurie – Close Your Eyes from A Little Bit of Me
  5. Maisha – Eaglehurst/The Palace from There is a Place
  6. Sorathy Korwar – Earth from Your East is My West
  7. Anthony Joseph – Milligan (The Ocean) from People of the Sun

Derek is listening to…..

Neil is listening to:

5 thoughts on “Week ending 16 November 2018: sounds unexpected”

  1. Hi there! Thanks so much for playing my track ‘Close your eyes’ and I’m glad you liked it.

    Just wanted to clarify that Birnam CD didn’t release the album – I did, as an independent artist. And it’s my first so it has been a huge learning curve!

    Also it’s called ‘A little bit of me’ ( not A little bit of love).

    Thanks again

  2. So sorry about the mistakes, very bad. I have, hopefully, corrected the text on the site. Please check and let me know if it is still not correct. Sorry re. Birnam, I assumed they were a record label and they have sent us a few releases. Sounds like they are PR/ facilitators for artists.
    Enjoyed your record and will play more on Cosmic Jazz, will not be this week but in future. It is difficult to say what impact we have but the site does get hits from around the world every day.
    Best wishes with the music and thank you for for coming back to me. Sorry again.
    Kind regards
    Derek

  3. Thanks Derek for swift action in amending this! Looks fine now. Yes Birnam provide promotional services. I’m glad you have enjoyed the album and thank you for playing it and your good wishes.
    All the best.
    Evelyn

  4. More news… First, check out the very eclectic playlist this week – that’s how we like it. Re. the brilliant Sarah Tandy at jazzre:freshed, she’s just informed us that the album will be released on 09 March next year. Can we really wait that long? Could be a teaser single before then though… We’ll let you know.

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