04 junio 2011

Dorothy Ashby - 1958 - In A Minor Groove


Dorothy Ashby - 1958 - In A Minor Groove

Hip Harp, Prestige PRLP-7140


In A Minor Groove, Prestige PR/NJ-8209

Recorded by Rudy Van Gelder in Hackensack, N.J.

March 7, 1958 (Tracks 1 to 7) And September 19, 1958 (Tracks 8 to 15)

Digital Remastering, 1992 Joe Tarantino (Fantasy Studios, Berkeley)


Dorothy Ashby (Harp)
Frank Wess (Flute)
Herman Wright (Double Bass)
Arthur Taylor (Drums) - 1-7 
Roy Haynes (Drums) - 8-15


Dorothy Ashby

De nombre real Dorothy Jeanne Thompson y nacida en Detroit, Michigan, U.S. el 6 de Agosto de 1932. Fallecida por cáncer el 13 de Abril de 1986 en (con 53 años) en Santa Monica, California, U.S., fue compositora e intérprete de harpa y piano, en el género del Jazz. Aunque yo no conozco otro artista especializado en este instrumento, parece no ser el primer intérprete (hombre o mujer) de arpa en jazz, según nos cuenta Michael G. Nastos un poco más abajo, ya que Casper Reardon (de las bandas de Jack Teagarden) Adele Girard (actuando con su marido Joe Marsala) o Hale Corky fueron precedentes. Pero parece ser que Dorothy Ashby fue la artista con más swing y en esta reedición en CD, que contiene sus dos mejores discos para los sellos Prestige y Prestige/New Jazz en 1958, “Hip Harp” e “In a Minor Groove”, quedan demostradas sus excepcionales facultades. Con los sonidos de flauta de Frank Wess cuidando el entorno, Ashby suena elegante y con frescura. Y sorprende su habilidad para conseguir una sonoridad tan peculiar y tan Jazzy, utilizando en nuevos contextos un instrumento muy poco dado, en principio, a la música de improvisación. 


Review by Michael G. Nastos

While not the first male or female jazz harp player (Casper Reardon of Jack Teagarden's bands, Adele Girard performing with her husband Joe Marsala, or Corky Hale set precedents), Dorothy Ashby was the very best and most swinging performer on the multi-stringed instrument associated with the gates of heaven. Here on Earth, Ashby adeptly plucked and strummed the harp like nobody else, as evidenced on this single CD reissue containing her two best LPs for the Prestige and Prestige/New Jazz labels from 1958 -- Hip Harp and In a Minor Groove. Alongside her prior efforts for the Savoy label, they collectively represent a small but substantive discography for the Detroit native in small group settings. With the exceptional flute sounds produced by Frank Wess, the combo plays music that is oriented via a unique sonic palate, further enhanced by the principals in the standards and originals they have chosen. Fellow Detroiter Herman Wright is here on bass, with duties split between legendary drummers Art Taylor and Roy Haynes, who place particular emphasis on subtle brushwork. Of course, the watchword of Ashby's sound is elegance, as she and Wess weave magical threads of gold and silver through standards like the circular and pristine "Moonlight in Vermont," the dramatic, slow "Yesterdays," or the sad "Alone Together." In a more Baroque or chamber setting, "Charmain" and "It's a Minor Thing" have Wess and Ashby thinking on a regal or Grecian platform. PortadaThe variety on this collection is impressive, as you hear cinematic bluesy proclamations on "Autumn in Rome," striking mystery in "Taboo," mischievous and sly winks during "Rascallity," and a sexy calypso-to-swing beat as "You'd Be So Nice to Come Home To" unfolds. Two originals of Ashby's stand out -- the well swung, blues based yet exotic "Pawky" with the singularly unique flute of Wess, and the delicate but decisive "Jollity" that moves along nicely. Of course these are straight-ahead mainstream jazz musicians, and you also get a soaring, clean version of the tricky "Bohemia After Dark" and "Dancing in the Dark," where Ashby's harp acts like a rhythm guitar. In fact, it is this aspect of Ashby's performing style that sets her apart from being a singular or simplistic crystalline melodic implement. Then add to this element that Wess is so acutely fine tuned to pure tonal discourse simply by the nature of his instrument, and can carry the load by himself. This is a delightful package that deserves further recognition as a project unique to jazz and modern music, perfectly showcasing Dorothy Ashby as an individualist for the ages.

Dorothy Ashby — Hip Harp ... LP Prestige

Great stuff by the grooviest artist ever to play a harp! Dorothy Ashby had a unique soul jazz harp sound, and although the instrument she used is probably more thought of in terms of bedtime lullabies, she actually makes it swing nicely, and with a soulful sound that draws back to traditions of African stringed instruments. Ashby was part of the same scene as Yusef Lateef, and like Lateef, she managed to use odd instrumentation in new contexts, to get a very unique jazz sound. This set's got harp and flute in the lead, and features the tracks "Pawky", "Charmaine", "Jollity", and "Back Talk". Also reissued with the original cover art!




Listado de Temas: 

Hip Harp:
01 - Pawky - 07:04 min. - 33,12 mb
02 - Moonlight In Vermont - 05:14 min. - 14,60 mb
03 - Back Talk - 05:04 min. - 23,72 mb
04 - Dancing In The Dark - 04:43 min. - 21,96 mb
05 - Charmain - 04:01 min. - 19,82 mb
06 - Jollity - 03:35 min. - 17,04 mb
07 - There's A Small Hotel - 05:51 min. - 27,58 mb

In A Minor Groove:
08 - Rascallity - 03:52 min. - 18,50 mb
09 - You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To - 03:56 min. - 19,48 mb
10 - It's A Minor Thing - 03:53 min. - 19,93 mb
11 - Yesterdays - 04:20 min. - 19,44 mb
12 - Bohemia After Dark - 06:17 min. - 29,40 mb
13 - Taboo - 06:13 min. - 31,14 mb
14 - Autumn In Rome - 05:30 min. - 27,48 mb
15 - Alone Together - 04:59 min. - 22,73 mb

15 Temas - Tiempo Total: 01:14:32 - 345,93 MB – Flac @655     


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