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Teaim asked in Entertainment & MusicMusicJazz · 1 decade ago

Avant Garde jazz suggestions? "Outside" jazz suggestions?

Please suggest any albums that YOU HAVE HEARD and enjoy listening to. I know how to search for music on the computer, but I would much rather have PERSONAL suggestions from people who listen to the music they are suggesting.

Anything you want to suggest is good for me to know. However, if you want to fine tune your suggestion for me, you can read what I have entered below, but like I said, anything is good.

I prefer the kind of exploratory music, rather than the kind that builds and builds (cresendo). Maybe something like Anthony Braxton's album called 3 Compositions of New Jazz.

Also, any great music with melodies would be great. Albums where the music has melody but the playing gets "outside". For example, Sam River's album Contours.


10 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    Here are some of the most avant-garde selections from my personal collection:

    Anthony Braxton - Piano Quartet, Yoshi's 1994: Braxton on piano? Maybe he should stick to his woodwinds. For the most part, this sounds more like someone playing the piano wearing boxing gloves. However, there are a few moments of relative lucidity where you can catch a pretty decent vibe.

    Sun Ra and his Arkestra - Out There a Minute: The title explains it all!

    Medeski, Martin and Wood - The Dropper: Think of Jimmy McGriff on LSD. Highly avant-garde, innovative and creative. This is NOT your father's organ trio!

    Karlheinz Stockhausen - Aus den seiber Tagen: 47 minutes of pure genre-defying beauty - but then again, avant-garde defies genre and labeling anyway. Granted, this is not for everyone, but you asked for 'outside', right?

    Michal Urbaniak - Urb Symphony: This is somewhat avant-garde, but mostly a fusion of jazz, rock, hip-hop and eastern European world music. This is a live recording with Urbaniak leading an orchestra, fusion combo, chorus and soloist (who I believe is his wife, Urzsula Dudziak). This is amazing!

    Steve Turre - Sanctified Shells: Conch shells played by four trombonists with Afro-Cuban rhythms? That's definitely out there, but it is also a thing of beauty. Turre has Robin Eubanks as a guest on this collection.

  • 1 decade ago

    I love Conference of the Birds, a Dave Holland led ECM record with the aforementioned Sam Rivers and Anthony Braxton. I've always considered it the Roseta Stone of Free Jazz. Listen to it and learn how to play inside and outside the melody, how to take it apart and put it back together.

  • 1 decade ago

    Max & Dizzy Paris 1989

    Ornette Coleman - Song X

    Max Roach, Cecil Taylor

    Miles Davis Live at the Filmore East

    John Coltrane Don Cherry

    Old And New Dreams , Playing

  • 1 decade ago

    I dig the Art Ensemble of Chicago, whose manifesto was "great black music from the ancient to the future"- and they weren't kidding. I saw them in 1986; during the course of the lengthy concert they managed to do African percussion ensembles, work songs, ragtime, swing, parade marches, reggae, and even rap. Check out a George Russell piece called "Electronic Sonata for Souls Loved by Nature"; I prefer the 1968 version which features Jan Garbarek and Terje Rypdal). Other group that comes readily to mind is Hal Russell's (no relation; the group lives in Germany) NRG Ensemble.

    My nominee for the "inside-out" approach would have to be Bennie Wallace, a Tennessee native who sounds like Sonny Rollins crossed with Boots Randolph during a freak multiphonics accident. Two recordings readily coming to mind are "Big Jim's Tango" (with Elvin Jones drumming) and "Twilight Time" (one of the first recordings on the revived Blue Note label with the likes of Dr. John, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and John Scofield; I especially dig the "New Orleans on LSD" tunes with trombonist Ray Anderson that are faintly reminiscent of the Anthony Braxton collaborations with George Lewis on trombone). Honorable mention to "Trilogue", a European recording that I had a cassette of with Albert Mangelsdorff on trombone, Jaco Pastorius on bass, and Alphonse Mouzon drumming- that's the biggest sound texturally I've ever heard from a trio without a chordal instrument.

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  • 1 decade ago

    how familiar are you with altoist/flautist/etc. Henry Threadgill's work? if "outside" yet still somehow melodic jazz is what you're looking for, his work is well worth your better examining. to that end, I believe that only 2 cds of his are currently in print, these being "Everybody's Mouth's a Book" and "Up Popped the Two Lips." I recommend both titles, which I do own myself, highly. likewise, I recommend any of his prior, now out-of-print releases on Columbia and Axiom ("Where's Your Cup," "Carry the Day," and "Too Much Sugar for a Dime" being the ones that I own of these) and also the earlier "Just the Facts and Pass the Bucket" (own it). his work with Air is nearly as impressive; if you can track it down cheap, "Live Air" (again, own it) is also certainly worth your checking out. thanks for reading!

  • 1 decade ago

    Ornette Coleman's Lonely Woman.

    Anything by Charles Mingus.

    Bit.h's Brew by Miles Davis.

    I have nothing from newer players. Jazz radio has left this town and I haven't spent much time listening to internet radio.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    What a bunch of squares have answered this question - apart from the person who mentioned Henry Threadgill, a great player.

    Have you listened to Braxton's amazing early solo album 'For Alto'? Incredible stuff.

    Check out Cecil Taylor, stunning piano player. His very earliest stuff is more like conventional jazz, but albums for Blue Note such as 'Unit Structures' and 'Conquistador' show the true Cecil breaking through. By the time of 'Silent Tongues' he is totally mature and doing his best work.

    Derek Bailey was an incredible English guitarist (he died a couple of years ago) who recorded with both Braxton and Taylor at different times. Try his albums 'Improvisation' and 'Aida' - the second one is acoustic and he mostly played electric, but it's great. To hear his most characteristic playing, check out CDs like 'Incus Taps' and 'Domestic and Public Pieces'. He also made a lovely and unexpected late album of standard tunes, called 'Ballads', as if to prove to anyone who doubted him that he could play absolutely beautiful conventional jazz guitar if he wanted to.

    Peter Brötzmann is a German sax player who is one of the major figures in free jazz in Europe. His most famous recording is 'Machine Gun', made in 1968 with seven other guys, mostly Dutch, German and English. The most earthshaking acoustic jazz recording I have ever heard. Always a tonic in the morning.

    Then of course, there's Coltrane's more avant-garde stuff, such as 'Ascension', 'Interstellar Space', 'Meditations'...it's all great, but then Coltrane is one of those guys who for me is beyond anything but the most informed kind of criticism.

    And yes, there's Ornette Coleman, although compared to someone like Braxton Ornette is positively mainstream. He's still great though. One of his most underrated albums is the soundtrack he did with Howard Shore to the movie 'Naked Lunch'. It's worth getting.

    If you like outside playing in a melodic context, one guy who should be right up your alley is Duke Ellington's later tenor man Paul Gonsalves. Gonsalves played a 27-chorus solo during an Ellington concert at the 1956 Newport Jazz Festival that did much to revive interest in Ellington's then-flagging career. He was a fabulous player, very inventive, very forward-looking, very subtle when he was allowed to be - a terrible drinker and inclined to nod off on the stand, but get yourself 'Ellington at Newport' and you will hear him in all his glory. It's one of the greatest live albums ever in any genre, btw, now that the full concert has been restored by Columbia's production team.

    Blivet - I take it back, you are not a square either. But I live in Ireland, we don't have PBS and I have never seen anything by Ken Burns, whoever he is. I just listened to the album. And Gonsalves plays wonderful stuff on Ellington's Far East and New Orleans Suites, doesn't he? So blah to you. :)

  • 1 decade ago

    Thinking Plague

    Hamster Theater

    'Nough said.

    *3/25 Why is it that not a single answer has gotten a thumbs-up? Has avant-guarde sunk so low that just answering a question about it gets that negative of a response? There's either too much vibe or not enough jive where avant-guarde is concerned.

  • 1 decade ago

    Amon Tobin - Bricolage

    Squarepusher - Do You Know Squarepusher

    Not really jazz, but idm music with jazz influence...

  • 1 decade ago

    if you're one jazz music lover try listening to tony bennett's songs... or paul anka's new album - rock swings

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