Wednesday, November 11, 2009

MIXING IT UP

I told my friend, William, Justin Time, the label you're signed to, released your new album "The Devil Tried to Kill Me" November 3rd. William joked you've made more albums than any jazz saxophonists dead or alive. I wanted to know how many recordings you’ve made as a leader. So I searched the web. In three decades, you've made over a hundred albums. That number ballooned when I included your work with the World Saxophone Quartet. The "Dave Murray Octet Plays Trane" and “Sacred Ground" are my favorites. William said he planned to buy your new album. I gave him my take of it. "The Devil Tried to Kill Me" is a mix of jazz, poetry, hip-hop, the blues and world music. Mixing different music forms has become your thing. Sometimes mixing things up work, this time it did not. Making this recording an ode to Africa was thoughtful, but on "Africa" TAJ Mahal comparing the continent to a hospice patient, and wishing he had the means to nurse it back to good health sounded silly. David, including rapper Sista Kee on "Southern Skies" messed up the magic you and Mahal had. "The Devil Tried to Kill Me", David, needed some heavy editing. William dismissed my comments about “The Devil Tried to Kill Me”, saying I was being too mean, and he’s still going to buy your album.
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