Tag Archives: Matthew Halsall

Playlist – 17 December 2014: jazz we like from 2014

This week I played some tunes that I heard and liked from 2014 . I avoid notions of “best of”: there are probably many that I missed. I do know, however, that this week has eight fantastic jazz and jazz-related pieces crammed into an hour – and from groups and performers that have excited me and strengthened my love of jazz during the year.

  1. Mammal Hands – Mansions of Millions from Animalia
  2. Michal Wroblewski Trio – Warsaw Blues from City Album
  3. Eple Trio – Island Sunrise from Universal Cycle
  4. Phronesis – Black from Life to Everything
  5. Matthew Halsall & the Gondwana Orchestra – When the World Was One from When the World Was one
  6. Samuel Prather – Fela Snarky from Groove Orchestra
  7. Somi feat Angelique Kidjo – Lady Revisited from The Lagos Music Salon
  8. Zara McFarlane feat Leron Thomas – Angie La La from If You Knew Her
  9. George Garzone – Restless from Quintonic

Playlist – 18 July 2013

This week CJ featured two tunes from Spiritual Jazz 4, the growing series of releases on the British Jazzman label which seem to get better and better. The music certainly continued the spiritual, deep and contemplative vibspiritual jazz 4e of the previous week. Spiritual Jazz 4 is indeed highly recommended. I would go so far as to say it is the best in the series so far. It features Americans in Europe: Modal, Esoteric and Progressive Jazz from the European Underground 1968 – 1979 and this week’s show included tunes from Billy Gault and the Bobby Hutcherson-Harold Land Quintet. Other Cosmic Jazz favourites included on the 2CD compilation are Sahib Shihab, Sun Ra, Albert Ayler (with a version of Summertime), Grachan Moncur III, Don Cherry, Lee Konitz and Eric Dolphy.  All the tracks were either recorded in Europe or were issued originally on a European label. It was good to see the highly-rated British altoist Peter King appearing with the unlikely combination of Johnny Hawksworth and Hampton Hawes. Hawksworth is a fine British bass player who is also a library music and TV theme tune composer – including Man About the House and the Thames Television ident music! As with the other releases in the series there are extensive liner notes on the music and musicians.

There were also some diversions from our spiritual path, although not to the extent of the club-based, fun-loving approach of the tunes two weeks previously. Dinah Washington’s performance from the celebrated Jazz On A Summer’s Day film and iconic Brazilian singer Astrud Gilberto were chosen as appropriate artists to reflect the summery weather in the UK right now and Jessica Lauren (featuring Jocelyn Brown on vocals) took us up-tempo with a great tune from the self-titled Jessica Lauren album from 2012. Two tracks from this release have been featured several times on CJ previously but we have not featured Happiness Train before. Orchestre Dakar Band was a piece of personal indulgence in Afro-Latin music and included a trumpet solo that sounded great even if it does not quite reach those upper registers.

For the next few weeks the programme will be in the capable hands of Gary – ICR station manager and then Palmer, whose excellent selections need no introduction to Cosmic Jazz listeners. The playlist will not go up as the tunes are played but Neil will ensure that they are up there as soon as possible.

  1. Full Moon Ensemble – Bamba Miaou from Spiritual Jazz 3
  2. Billy Gault – Mode For Trane from Spiritual Jazz 4
  3. Matthew Halsall – Finding My Way from Fletcher Moss Park
  4. Jessica Lauren feat. Jocelyn Brown – Happiness Train from Jessica Lauren
  5. Orchestre Dakar Band – Baylien Di Yelwane from AfroLatin Via Dakar
  6. Dinah Washington – All Of Me from Jazz On A Summer’s Day
  7. Astrud Gilberto – Once Upon A Summertime from Gitanes Jazz – Stan Getz
  8. Kairos 4Tet (feat Omar) – Song For The Open Road from Everything We Hold
  9. Larry ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins – Transcendental Euphoria from Transcendental
  10. Bobby Hutcherson-Harold Land Quintet – The Creators from Spiritual Jazz 4

Playlist – 25 April 2013

There have not been many of them lately, but this week’s show was a return to a solomatthhew halsall john coltrane presentation from Derek.The choices were inspired partly by others. Firstly, last week’s show hosted by Palmer and Alex had Manchester-based trumpeter Matthew Halsall’s version of Clifford Jordan’s John Coltrane. Tonight the track was played in full. You can still download it, along with a couple of other great covers.There  was also a repeat for Lost Keys, the title track of an album from Poland’s excellent Maciej Fortuna Quartet and Clusters from NuYorican master Charlie Palmieri, which I found on a CD hidden in a basement at home. If you come across anything by Charlie Palmieri give it serious attention.

An email from Neil during the week recounted how he had walked into a cafe in Beijing recently to hear Siegfried by Swiss-born French-based trumpeter Erik Truffaz. We have played this several times on Cosmic Jazz but this was too good an excuse to play it again. Are we right to repeat CJ favourites from time to time? On the evidence of this wonderful and uplifting piece of music I think so. [Agreed! Neil}.

The latest selection of tunes from Steve’s Jazz Sounds resulted in the Winther, Bergonzi, Amon, Mogensen title track from their album, a US-Scandinavian collaboration of tough, contemporary jazz.

There’s a new compilation from the rare jazz vinyl collection of jazz dance DJ Kev Beadle. In the past he was a DJ at the legendary Sunday Afternoon sessions at Dingwalls in Camden London. Not surprisingly, Private Collection is the title of the CD and we shall play more from it in the future. I began this week with Brotherhood by Kamal Abdul Alim, a tune Neil and knew from the Japanese band Sleep Walker, not knowing there is an original. Both versions are fine jazz dance floor gems and when I tested the Kamal Abdul Alim one when playing out last Friday it stood out as a highlight of the evening.{I knew it would be! Neil]

There was also a quiet phase to the programme – for no particular reason, but I loved it and must do this again. We had Betty Carter, Mario Biondi and Shirley Horn which links to  the long awaited return of the video. See below as this week we dived deep with a one hour programme from 1992 on legendary vocalist Shirley Horn.

  1. Matthew Halsall – John Coltrane
  2. Maciej Fortuna Quartet – Lost Keys
  3. Charlie Palmieri – Clusters
  4. Winther Bergonzi Amon Mogensen – Tetragonz
  5. Erik Truffaz feat. Nya – Siegfried
  6. Rudolph Johnson – The Highest Pleasure
  7. Betty Carter – I Can’t Help It
  8. Mario Biondi – On A Clear Day You Can See Forever
  9. Shirley Horn – Travellin’ Light
  10. Kamal Abdul Alim – Brotherhood
  11. Jose James – Come To My Door
  12. Larry ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins – Transcendental Euphoria
  13. Bossa Tres – Imprevisto
  14. Joe Henderson – Gazelle

So here’s the late Shirley Horn in the 1992 film Here’s to Life, released at the same time as the album of the same name. Enjoy!



Playlist – 11 April 2013

This week Palmer and Alex are sitting in on the show with their own personal selections.

  1. Michal Urbaniak Group – Lato
  2. John Coltrane – India, NYC 1961
  3. Andrew Hill – Dusk
  4. Matthew Halsall – J.C (John Coltrane)
  5. Roland Kirk – A Handful Of Fives
  6. Abbey Lincoln – Brother, Where Are You
  7. Sun Ra – Angels and Demons at Play
  8. Maciej Fortuna Quartet – Lost Keys
  9. Roland Kirk – Domino
  10. Marc de Clive Lowe and the Rotterdam Jazz Orchestra – Take The Space Trane
  11. Sons Of Kemet – The Jungalist
  12. Flora Purim – Speak No Evil
  13. Milano Jazz Dance Combo – Changes ft. Colonel Red
  14. Odell Brown & The Organizers – Think About It
  15. Chester Thompson – Power House
  16. Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66 – Upa Neguinho
  17. Three Sounds – Soul Symphony
  18. George Benson – I Want You
  19. Della Reese – It Was A Very Good Year
  20. Horace Silver Quintet – Wipe Away The Evil
  21. Robert Lowe – Back To Funk
  22. Charlie Palmieri – Clusters
  23. Roy Haynes – Satan’s Mysterious Feeling

Playlist – 27 December 2012

This week’s programme was the second of our Best of 2012. There were plenty of great new releases squeezed into our 90 minute slot but we also managed a few re-releases with Sun Ra and Spider’s Web, a rarity from the BGP Jazz Funk compilation. Spider’s Webb was the brainchild of drummer Spider Webb and his wife Carol Kaye, the renowned bass guitar session player, famed for her work with Phil Spector, David Axelrod and others.

Neil played a flying visit at the start of the show with a mix of five tracks from new albums and Derek continued with more of the music we enjoyed over the year. For more on what we liked this year, check out our upcoming feature – watch this space.

  1. Flying Lotus – Until the Colours Come
  2. Ahmad Jamal – Autumn Rain
  3. Mala – Cuba Electronic
  4. John Surman – On Staddon Heights
  5. Nik Bartsch’s Ronin – Modul 41_47 (live)
  6. Matthew Halsall – Fletcher Moss Park
  7. EST – Three Falling Part 1
  8. GoGo Penguin – Fanfares
  9. Trish Clowes – Atlas
  10. Kelan Philip Cohran and The Hypnotic Brass Ensemble – Frankincense & Myrrh
  11. Sun Ra – Plutonian Nights
  12. Kenny Garrett – Welcome Earth Song
  13. Carmen Lundy – Love Thy Neighbour
  14. Gabriel Poso – Freedom
  15. Ebo Taylor – Abonsam
  16. Spider’s Web – I Don’t Know What’s On Your Mind

Playlist – 13 December 2012

After the death of Ravi Shankar, it seemed appropriate to play some spiritual music from John Coltrane who was influenced by the Indian sitarist. Stellar Regions is the title track from the complete recordings Coltrane made on 15 February 1967, in Rudy van Gelder’s famed Englewood Cliffs studio. The track (heard here in an alternate version) includes ‘trane’s wife Alice Coltrane on piano, herself influenced by Indian music. Together they named one of their children after Shankar, so music from Ravi Coltrane’s album In Flux is also fitting and – in that circular fashion we like on CJ – Dear Alice is named for his mother.

There is EST and then there are EST followers – both were represented in CJ tonight. The recent birthdays of Donald Byrd, aged 80 and McCoy Tyner aged 73, are also acknowledged. Sending My Love – the title track from the first  Matthew Halsall CD –  features alongside the title track of his 2012 release four years later, Fletcher Moss Park.

To ensure jazz dancers are not forgotten there was some new Japanese jazz from Room 56 and a sample from Viagem 4, the new compilation of Brazilian music from the 1960s, from Italian DJ and musician Nicola Conte.

  1. John Coltrane – Stellar Regions (Alternate Take)
  2. Ravi Coltrane – Dear Alice
  3. Room56 – Hit The Devil
  4. 7 De Ouros – So Balanco
  5. Roland Kirk – We Free Kings
  6. Matthew Halsall – Sending My Love
  7. Matthew Halsall – Fletcher Moss Park
  8. Donald Byrd – The Black Disciple
  9. McCoy Tyner – Sama Layuca
  10. Barcode Trio – Esbjorn
  11. Go Go Penguin – Seven Sons of Bjorn
  12. EST – Inner City, City Lights

Playlist – 29 November 2012

Cosmic Jazz hopes to welcome back many of our international listeners this week as Listen Again should return. This will be a chance to replay for a wider audience some of the new music that the show has gathered over the last few weeks.

Tonight’s show featured a track from the final EST (Esbjorn Svensson Trio) release, simply called 301 after the Australian studios where the album was recorded. Regarded by many as the culmination of the unique EST sound, 301 is likely to feature on many end of year lists as one of the best jazz albums of 2012. Also in the show tonight was a UK trio’s reflection on the influence of EST and a slew of great homegrown talent from Matthew Halsall to more from Larry ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins. The  show ended with one of Neil’s top choices of the year, bassist Esperanza Spalding, and a favourite from Derek, vocalist Carmen Lundy.

  1. Sun Ra – Aiethopia
  2. Roland Kirk – A Sack Full of Soul
  3. Erich Kleinschuster Sextet – Communion
  4. Full Moon Ensemble – Samba Miaou
  5. EST – Inner City, City Lights
  6. GoGo Penguin – Seven Sons of Bjorn
  7. Matthew Halsall – Cherry Blossom
  8. Trish Clowes – Atlas
  9. Larry ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins – Soul Train
  10. Esperanza Spalding – Radio Song
  11. Carmen Lundy – Dance The Dance

Video this week features Esperanza Spalding’s official video for her hit Radio Song – enjoy!

Playlist – 08 November 2012

This week’s CJ featured some recent favourites – more from London Jazz Festival opening act GoGo Penguin and Gondwana labelmate Matthew Halsall and two tracks from septuagenarian drummer Jack deJohnette. By the way, check out the review of Herbie Hancock’s LJF show here http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2012/nov/13/herbie-hancock-live-review?INTCMP=SRCH And he’s 72!

  1. Miles Davis – Its About that Time/The Theme
  2. Patrice Rushen – 7/73
  3. Terry Callier – No More Blues
  4. Jack de Johnette – Silver Hollow
  5. Jack de Johnette – Indigo Dreamscapes
  6. GoGo Penguin – Seven Sons of Bjorn
  7. Matthew Halsall – Fletcher Moss Park
  8. ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins – Anomalous Monism
  9. The Jazz on the Latin Side All-Stars – Mujer Chicana
  10. Wayne Shorter – Night Dreamer

Playlist – 25 October 2012

Sometimes things don’t go according to plan – but no email, internet or phone services for listeners could not prevent some great music this week. There was more music from Manchester’s Gondwana label, another track from Larry ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins, some typical ‘ECMery’ from bassist Eberhard Weber – the title track from his first 1973 album for the influential German label – and something from Space is Only Noise, the 2011 release from American-Chilean beats artist Nicholas Jaar.

  1. Charlie Haden Liberation Orchestra – El Quinto Regiemento/Los Cuatro Generales/Viva La Quince Brigada
  2. Matthew Halsall – Fletcher Moss Park
  3. GoGo Penguin – HF
  4. ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins – Anomalous Monism
  5. Joe Henderson – Tres Palabras
  6. Wayne Shorter – Yes or No
  7. Oliver Nelson – Stolen Moments
  8. Eberhard Weber – The Colours of Chloe
  9. Nicholas Jaar- Variations

Video this week had to come from tenor saxophonist David S Ware, whose quartet was one of the most consistently exciting in jazz. With the great William Parker anchoring the sound on bass and the endlessly inventive Matthew Shipp on piano, the quartet is completed in this live performance by drummer Guillermo Brown.

Ware was one of the few current saxophonists who could truly be an inheritor of Coltrane’s sound. Never a Coltrane clone, Parker had a raw lyricism that was ‘trane-like in its scope and power. Here he is in a live performance of one of his signature pieces Aquarian Sound:



Playlist – 18 October 2012

Tonight’s show featured more new British jazz and some music that was truly ‘cosmic’ in its feel. The new release from CJ favourite Matthew Halsall – Fletcher Moss Park – is a calm, spiritual and modal piece. Former Working Week sax and flute player Larry ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins also has an excellent release entitled Transcendental featuring another CJ fave, pianist Zoe Rahman. All the musicians are members of Jerry Dammers’ Spatial AKA Orchestra, whose performance in May of this year in Norwich was one of the most spectacular I have ever seen.

There were more modal, cosmic sounds on the show, plus a bonus from a new UK trio. Fanfares by the group GoGo Penguin, is on the Manchester-based Gondwana label, which also releases the records of Matthew Halsall and Nat Birchall. From this release you got hard-driving trio jazz, with influences ranging from EST to classical and electronica. It seemed appropriate to pair this with a track from EST’s Seven Days of Falling release before going into a truly cosmic section with Saturnian Sun Ra. And as a final extra, more new British jazz from rising star Trish Clowes.

  1. Matthew Halsall – Cherry Blossom
  2. Nat Birchall – Sacred Dimension
  3. Matthew Halsall – The Sun in September
  4. GoGo Penguin – Seven Sons of Bjorn
  5. EST – Elevation of Love
  6. Sun Ra – Images
  7. Kelan Philip Cohran and the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble – Frankincense and Myrrh
  8. ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins – Africa
  9. Zoe & Idris Rahman – Sanctuary
  10. ‘Stonephace’ Stabbins – Transcendental Euphoria
  11. Trish Clowes – Atlas