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Sunday, September 2, 2007

The Art of the Duo : trumpet-drums duo and sax-drums duo

Since John Coltrane and Rashied Ali created "Interstellar Space" with only sax and percussion, opening through this limited line-up new realms of expression, often raw, hard, yet incredibly direct and open, many have seen the opportunities it offered and followed their example. Playing in a trio format is for many already a tough task, but relinquishing the typical role of the bass as melodic and rhythmic anchor point, offers a total freedom of interaction, but it's like poetry without rhyme, there is no comfort zone to fall back into, no safe haven, no safety net, it's swim or drown. Without technical mastery, creativity and close listening skills, it's hard to create anything meaningful at all.

Some memorable records :

Sax-percussion duo

John Coltrane &Rashied Ali : Interstellar Space
Daniel Carter & Ravi Padmanabha : Nivesana
Günter Baby Sommer & Raymond MacDonald : Delphinius & Lyra
John Surman & Jack DeJohnette : Invisible Nature
Fred Anderson & Hamid Drake : Back Together Again
Fred Anderson & Steve McCall : Vintage Duets
Robert Barry & Fred Anderson : Live Duets 2001
John Butcher & Paal Nilssen-Love - Concentric
Kahil El'Zabar & David Murray - Jazznacht Live
Kahil El'Zabar & David Murray - Live In Italy
Charles Lloyd & Billy Higgins : Which Way Is East
Frank Lowe & Rashied Ali : Duo Exchange
Joe McPhee & Hamid Drake : Emancipation/Proclamation
David Murray & Jack DeJohnette : In Our Time
Ellery Eskelin & Han Bennink : Dissonant Characters
Federico Ughi & Daniel Carter : Astonishment
Federico Ughi & Daniel Carter : Mountain Path
Ken Vandermark & Paal Nilssen-Love : Dual Pleasure
Ken Vandermark & Paal Nilssen-Love : Dual Pleasure 2
Ken Vandermark & Paal Nilssen-Love : Seven
Frode Gjerstad & Paal Nilssen-Love : Day Before One
Paal Nilssen-Love & Mats Gustafsson : Splatter
Paal Nilssen-Love & Mats Gustafsson : I Love It When You Snore
Peter Brötzmann & Yoshisaburo Toyozumi : Sabu Brötzmann Duo
Peter Brötzmann & Hamid Drake : The Dried Rat-Dog
Lou Grassi & Marshall Allen : Live At The Guelph Festival
Noah Howard & Bobby Kapp : Between Two Eternities
Steve Baczkowski & Ravi Padmanabha : Tongue Rust & Lead Moth
Steve Baczkowski & Ravi Padmanabha : Aqua Machine
Steve Lacy & John Heward: Recessional (for Oliver Johnson)
Steve Lacy & Steve Argüelles: Image
Steve Lacy & Andrea Centazzo: Clangs
Steve Lacy & Andrea Centazzo: TAO
Eddie Prevost & Alan Wilkinson : So Are We, So Are We
Hamid Drake & Assif Tsahar : Soul Bodies Vol. 1
Hamid Drake & Assif Tsahar : Soul Bodies Vol. 2
Assif Tsahar & Tatsuya Nakatani : Come Sunday
Assif Tsahar & Susie Ibarra : Home Cookin'

Anthony Braxton & Andrew Cyrille - Duo Palindrome, Vols. 1 & 2
Max Roach and Anthony Braxton - Two in One - One in Two

Glenn Spearman & Donald Robinson - Night After Night
Evan Parker & Paul Lytton - RA ; Collective Calls; At the Unity Theatre, Two Other Stories
Lou Gare & Eddie Prevost - At the Roundhouse, To Hear and Back Again
Dewey Redman & Ed Blackwell - Red Black
Jimmy Lyons & Andrew Cyrille - Burnt Offering

John Zorn & Milford Graves - 50th Birthday Celebration
Rashied Ali & Louie Belogenis - Rings of Saturn
Sabir Mateen & Ben Karetnick - Xing
Paul Flaherty & Chris Corsano - The Beloved Music

Willem Breuker & Han Bennink - The New Acoustic Swing Duo
Sabir Mateen
& Sunny Murray - We Are Not At The Opera
Sonny Simmons & Billy Higgins - Backwoods Suite
Daniel Carter & Andrew Barker - Common Soldier
Andrew Barker & Charles Waters - S/T
Andrew Barker / Charles Waters Duo - Dialogues In Now

I'm sure I forgot some memorable albums : please let me know!
Suggestions should be for entire albums of sax/drums.

(already many thanks to Tom, Stéphane, Clifford, Rosebud and anonymous)


Anonymous said...

From the top of my head, notable missing (and highly recommended)recordings are Assif Tsahar's pairings with Tatsuya Nakatani, "Come Sunday" on his own Hopscotch label, and the 2 volumes of "Soul Bodies" (recorded at Vision Festival and Glenn Miller Café respectively) with Hamid Drake on Ayler Records.

Stef said...

I added the Assif Tsahar/Hamid Drake the second before I opened your comment. Good catch!

I'll add "Come Sunday". I also forgot his duo with his wife Susie Ibarra!!!

Anonymous said...

Braxton has duo recordings with Max Roach and Andrew Cyrille

Clifford Allen said...

Sax and percussion

Rashied Ali & Frank Lowe - Duo Exchange - (Survival)
Glenn Spearman & Donald Robinson - Night After Night - (MusaPhysics)
Evan Parker & Paul Lytton - RA (Ring), Collective Calls (Incus), At the Unity Theatre (Incus), Two Other Stories (Emanem)
Lou Gare & Eddie Prevost (AMM) - At the Roundhouse (Incus), To Hear and Back Again (Matchless)

Trumpet & Drums

Toshinori Kondo & Paul Lovens - The Last Supper - (Po Torch)
I think Bill Dixon did some duos with Henry Letcher that appear on the Fore LPs (can't locate mine at the moment)

Anonymous said...

Dewey Redman/Ed Blackwell
Jimmy Lyons/Andrew Cyrille

Stef said...

Absolutely right - in the meantime I already added Braxton & Cyrille + Braxton & Max Roach.

Billy Dixon played with Tony Oxley (Papyrus 1 & 2) - I have those records - just forgot about them, same thing with Redman/Blackwell.
Thanks for the suggestions!

Anonymous said...

Don't tell me I forgot about the John Zorn/Milford Graves session during Mr. Zorn's 50th Birthday Celebration. Don't remember the vol. # on the series and am too lazy to reach the shelve it's on.

Unknown said...

Willem Breuker/Han Bennink : The New Acoustic Swing Duo (ICP 001, 1967) is great.

Anonymous said...

Sabir Mateen/Sunny Murray-"We Are Not At The Opera"


TWISDAY BC said...

Don't forget

Daniel Carter / Andrew Barker Duo
- "common soldier" QBICO records 2000

Andrew Barker / Charles Waters Duo
- s/t Earmark23 records. 1997

Andrew Barker / Charles Waters Duo
-"dialogues in now" QBiCO 2000

Anonymous said...

Arthur Rhames and Rashied Ali- "The Dynamic Duo Remember Trane and Bird"

Anonymous said...

Bill McHenry & Andrew Cyrille

Anonymous said...

Jackie McLean & Michael Carvin - Antiquity

Anonymous said...

Jackie McLean & Michael Carvin - Antiquity