SONNY ROLLINS at Montreux + KYOTOGRAPHIE 015 + KYOTO JAZZ SEXTET

Sonny Rollins at Montreaux pg

Don’t you just love a good photo? This one comes via Shuya Okino’s instragram and it was taken by one Giussepe Pino at the Montreux Jazz Festival. It immediately had me rummaging through the vinyl for a trio of Sonny Rollins albums…. ‘Our Man in Jazz’ with Don Cherry, ‘3 Giants’ with Clifford Brown and Max Roach, … and the Milestone LP with ‘Reflections In A Golden Horn’… I’ve got deep memories of that band at Ronnie’s in the early Seventies. The inimitable Rufus Harley, who played on the follow up LP – ‘The Cutting Edge’ – was in the mix on bagpipes… amazing session.

KJSI’ve just downloaded the the brand new album by the Kyoto Jazz Sextet that Okino san has just sent me. It’s called ‘Mission’ and it’s on Blue Note records – so, more on that in the near future. Also, if you are lucky enough to be in Kyoto in April check out this year’s KYOTOGRAPHIE which features the exhibition – A Vision of Jazz : Francis Wolff and Blue Note Records. The show combines Wolff’s photographic prints with the work of seminal graphic designer Reid Miles. This is the first time that this precious visual archive has journeyed from its home in New York to Japan. The Kyoto Jazz Sextet will launch the ‘Mission’ album at the Festival.

Kyotographie 2015

Kyotographie 2015

KYOTOGRAPHIE http://www.kyotographie.jp

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COSMIC FLUSH PT. 2: FUTURA meets RAMMELLZEE

Futura meets Rammellzee

Futura meets Rammellzee

Rammellzee passed away in 2010, but before he left us he recorded his magnum opus, ‘Cosmic Flush’ with producer Jonah Mociun. Unreleased, eight years have passed. The collection of breakcore and speed metal-influenced rap tracks stand as a futuristic relic which is just now about to see the light of day.

Available from the excellent Gamma Proforma, ‘Cosmic Flush’ fully realises Rammellzee’s complex philosophy and unique vision of futuristic hip hop, apocalyptic science fiction, and extreme sonic exploration.

To celebrate the life of one of our culture’s great minds Rob Swain of Gamma is proud to present ‘Cosmic Flush’ as a commemorative series of records and prints. There are 7 core tracks, each will be reinterpreted and remixed by a visual and audio artist. We can also look forward to these artworks forming part of an exhibition which will take place in New York & London.

This release is Part 2 in the set, ‘How’s My Girlfriends’ has been visually reinterpreted by the NYC street art legend that is Futura, a contemporary of Rammellzee’s, and remixed by Mr Len (Company Flow/LenCo), a pioneering left filed Dj & producer who cites Rammellzee as a serious influence.

The man formerly known as Futura 2000

The man formerly known as Futura 2000

Check it!

PRE ORDER HERE: http://www.gammaproforma.com/index.php/ecwid#!/THE-RAMMELLZEE-HOWS-MY-GIRLFRIENDS-VINYL+/p/49228113/category=758346

All orders include the digital download. Pre-orders access the downloads before the official release date.

Please note: This release is limited to a max of 2 copies per customer!

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Human Rights Human Wrongs @ the Photographers Gallery

"A brigade of Vietcong women soldiers in gala-uniform stand in formation with Type 56 rifles during a victory parade. Vietnam, no date / Bollinger." (C) Black Star Publishing Co. Inc.

“A brigade of Vietcong women soldiers in gala-uniform stand in formation with Type 56 rifles during a victory parade. Vietnam, no date / Bollinger.” (C) Black Star Publishing Co. Inc.

Last Thursday, we wandered into The Photographer’s Gallery in Soho to check two exhibitions – Charlotte Dumas’ Anima and The Widest Prairies and HUMAN RIGHTS HUMAN WRONGS.

Upon entering HUMAN RIGHTS HUMAN WRONGS I was confronted with 316 original prints, from the prestigious Black Star Collection, that presented a mirror to my own life on this planet. The black and white reflections that bounced back to me revealed decade upon decade of global conflict, images that revealed the dark side of humanity and proved that despite the millions who had died between 1939-1945 no lessons had been learned. In fact, that war simply created a host of others as people demanded social and economic justice – freedom from colonialism and imperialism. These were the struggles that I and my friends sought to understand, learn from and supported – from Algeria to Vietnam to South Africa and Angola to Nicaragua and Chile. Today, we have new wars – religious, ideological, ethnic and economic, the fragmenting of empires, the combined threat of climate change and the control of energy sources. We need to grasp that bigger picture right now.

HUMAN RIGHTS HUMAN WRONGS uses the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights as a point of departure “to examine whether images of political struggle, suffering and victims of violence work for or against humanitarian objectives, especially when considering questions of race, representation, ethical responsibility and the cultural position of the photographer.”

Curated by Mark Sealy – Director of Autograph ABP – HUMAN RIGHTS HUMAN WRONGS commences circa 1945 and in timely fashion, considering the recent events in Ferguson and other cities in the USA, includes some poignant and resonant images of Dr Martin Luther King and Civil Rights Movement march from Selma to Montgomery.

Selma or Ferguson?

Selma or Ferguson?

Biafra - Pic by Carlo Bavagnoli

Biafra – Pic by Carlo Bavagnoli

The exhibition also features incredible images – often accompanied by revealing notes, written at the time, by the photographer – of the independence and liberation movements in both Latin America and Africa ( including Kenya, Algeria, Chad, and Congo). Portraits of Nobel Peace Prize winners Lester B. Pearson, Yasser Arafat, and René Cassin sit alongside images of war and genocidal conflict from Vietnam to Rwanda and protest movements in Berkeley/California, Chile, and Argentina.

These photographic images are at times harsh, sickening and inevitably disturbing. Time after time they reveal humankind in abject, euphoric or violently explicit conditions that force us, the viewer, to reflect and dig deeper, thereby confirming an understanding that it is our duty, in 2015, as global citizens, to reaffirm the case for human and civil rights.

Will it take another exhibition like Human Rights Human Wrongs – in 10 or 50 years time – to make us regret not doing more right now?

In the Beginning....

In the Beginning….

Mark Sealy Interview: HUMAN RIGHTS HUMAN WRONGS from The Photographers' Gallery on Vimeo.

As it went, our first stop in the Photographer’s Gallery was on the top floor and Charlotte Dumas’ images of wild horses in Nevada. The viewer is transported to cowboy country and a land that remains as wild and untamed as the quiet, tough looking horses that freely roam the landscape. It’s ironic that the one institution which interacts with these animals is the local penitentiary. There is something primal about horses. I can understand how people like to be in their presence and even find it healing. As a species they are ancient and it’s that primal physicality that comes across in Dumas’ short film of the horses, who draw the gun carriage carrying coffins at Arlington cemetery, going to sleep. It was quite calming and a welcome contrast to what was to emerge a couple of floors below.

© Charlotte Dumas

© Charlotte Dumas

More Info: http://thephotographersgallery.org.uk/

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THE FINAL CHAPTER: RAMMELLZEE – ‘COSMIC FLUSH’ / ‘Pt. 1 BRAINSTORM’

RAMMELLZEE: COSMIC FLUSH – Pt. 1 BRAINSTORM is released on the 30th March 2015 by Gamma Proforma and it comes hard on the heels of other mutually ambitious 21st century projects that inludes SHEONE’s BLACKATELIER, DIVINE STYLER’s ‘DEF MASK’ and the REWIRE Box Set

ian-kualii-rammellzee

Rammellzee

Rammellzee

Rammellzee passed away in 2010, but before he left us he recorded his magnum opus, ‘Cosmic Flush’ with producer Jonah Mociun. Unreleased, eight years have passed. The collection of breakcore and speed metal-influenced rap tracks stand as a futuristic relic which is just now about to see the light of day.

‘Cosmic Flush’ fully realises Rammellzee’s complex philosophy and unique vision of futuristic hip hop, apocalyptic science fiction, and extreme sonic exploration.

To celebrate the life of one of our culture’s great minds Gamma Prorma are releasing ‘Cosmic Flush’ as a commemorative series of records and prints. There are seven core tracks, each will be reinterpreted and remixed by a visual and audio artist. The works will also form part of an exhibition which will take place in New York and London.

This release is Part 1 in the set, ‘Brainstorm’ has been visually reinterpreted by Ian Kuali’i, a disciple of Rammellzee’s inner circle, and remixed by Divine Styler who cites Rammellzee as one of his key influences.

Celebrate the groundbreaking influence and genius of the artist, The Rammellzee.

rammellzee

http://www.gammaproforma.com/index.php/ecwid#!/THE-RAMMELLZEE-BRAINSTORM-VINYL+/p/47504162/category=758345
Please note: All orders include the digital download.

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A New Year Approaches – Enter The Four Dragons of Dao Yin

Four-Dragon-Cover-400x253

Enter The Four Dragons of Dao Yin – a set of Baguazhang related, moving, stretching exercises which focus on clearing the meridians and awakening the spine during the process of developing “internal skill”/Nei Gong – and our guide is the West Country based writer, martial artist and nu-generation Daoist, Damo Mitchell.

Damo Mitchell has practiced martial arts since childhood and has recently emerged as a leading light and author amongst a new generation of teachers who have trained extensively in China and are more than adept at explaining classical concepts while evolving a clear methodology for teaching traditional forms.

The Four Dragons is the third volume in a trilogy of books, written by Damo Mitchell and published by Singing Dragon, that deal with Daoist Nei Gong – a set of internal practices or “energy work” which are more often referred to a Qi Gong. However, this book is specifically focused on Dao Yin, a set of exercises aimed at improving a person’s psychological and physical health,and developing martial skills. The origin of Dao Yin goes back a couple of thousand years. They were originally developed Daoists practitioners to purge stagnant energy which had invaded the body from outside.

The roots of this book lies in a visit Damo Mitchell made to Shandong. While there he encountered Dragon Dao Yin through an early morning circle walking Baguazhang group who practiced it as muscle softening, spine strengthening, health exercise as well as through an elderly crew of mostly female Medical Dragon Dao Yin practitioners. Since then it has become a key element within the syllabus of his Lotus Nei Gong school.

I like the fact that you don’t have to read his other books to get into The Four Dragons. He more than adequately elucidates the historical, philosophical and medical context in which Nei Gong theory and practice have evolved and then clearly explains the important distinction between Qi Gong and Dao Yin.

From thereon in he deals with the The Four Dragons – Awakening, Swimming, Soaring and Drunken – “a set of short sequences designed to work with the subtle energies of the spine and lead pathogenic energies out of the body.” At the core of these four sequences is the spine and how to wake it up. He also deals with stagnation and chi flow, opening the joints and the energy gates as well breathing patterns and Yi (intention).

There is a compelling clarity to this work overall – whether through the text or the illustrations – and I believe The Four Dragons are a set of free flowing exercises well worth adding to your exercise routines (running, yoga, taiji… whatever!) and working on. Basically, by taking on the Four Dragons you are engaging with a process and embarking on a journey.

There’s a lot to take on board in this book and if you decide to dip in and enjoy the movements of The Four Dragons you may want to go deeper and check out Damo’s 3 DVD set or attend one of his workshops. Alternatively, depending on where you live, you may need to seek out another Nei Gong teacher.

Finally, here’s one Damo Mitchell’s top students Roni Edlund doing the Drunken Dragon… I can identify with that!

For more info on Damo Mitchell & other Singing Dragon Publications:

http://lotusneigong.net/
http://www.scholarsage.com/
http://singingdragon.com/

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OUT NOW! Dogwoof present NAS: ‘Time is ILLMATIC’

OUT NOW on DVD and on demand – ‘Time is ILLMATIC’

Twenty years after its release, ‘Illmatic’ has become a hip-hop benchmark that encapsulates the socio-political outlook, enduring spirit, and collective angst of a generation of young black men searching for their voice in America.

Nas_-_Time_Is_Illmatic_3D_DVD_grande‘Time is Illmatic’ tracks the musical legacy of the Jones family, handed down to Nas from his jazz musician father, Olu Dara. It also examines the social conditions and environmental influences that contributed to Nas’ worldview.

Along the way, ‘Time Is Illmatic’ shows how Nas – with the support of his Queensbridge neighbourhood crew, the loyalty of his younger brother Jabari “Jungle” Jones, and sacrifices of his mother, Ann Jones – overcame insurmountable odds to create the greatest work of music from hip-hop’s second golden era.

Nas Dogwoof_Documentar(l to r) Wiz, Nas, Jungle - 1993 Photography: _Danny_Clinch

(l to r) Wiz, Nas, Jungle – 1993 Photography: _Danny_Clinch

Nas Illmatic Lp

Following a fantastic theatrical run in UK cinemas last year – which I sadly missed! – documentary label Dogwoof is proud and delighted to bring the ultimate hip-hop doc to Steelbook, DVD and On Demand. Directed by One9, this is the quintessential companion piece to the 1994 album that changed the landscape of rap and became the benchmark for all rap artists to follow. In the mix: interviews with a host of players including Alicia Keys, Pharrell Williams, Swizz Beatz, Q-Tip and Jabari ‘Jungle’ Jones.

Check it! http://shop.dogwoof.com/collections/new-releases/products/nas-time-is-illmatic-dvd-pre-order

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GARY CROSBY is 60: Groundation at The Cockpit

jazz in the round

GARY CROSBY – bassist and the driving force behind Tomorrow’s Warriors and Dune records – continues to celebrate the big Six-O with a session at Jez Nelson’s Jazz In The Round next Monday.

Together with new generation players Moses Boyd (drums), Nathaniel Facey (sax) and Shirley Tetteh (guitar) he introduces us to his latest small band – Groundation – a gathering, a coming together, synonymous with the Rastafari.

“It’s a kind of ‘group discussion’ between some of my musical friends and me. Each of us has a contribution to make to this discussion, to this creative conversation, and can choose to ‘say’ as much or as little as we feel.”

I’m vibin’ on that and wish The Man may more earth-days to come.

Joining Groundation at the Cockpit will be my good friend and eminent flautist Rowland Sutherland who promises to drop some ethereal solo flute inspired by a recent visit to Japan and his encounters with the shakuhachi masters.

Add to the mix the Sam Eagles Quartet, who apparently combine post pop sensibilities with Noir-ish atmospherics, and you have yet another eclectic night at Jazz In The Round.

Tickets are £12 in advance and FREE to all Supporters Of Sound

http://thecockpit.org.uk/show/jazz_in_the_round_0

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