MAL WALDRON — What It Is

Jazz music community with review and forums

MAL WALDRON - What It Is cover
4.40 | 2 ratings | 1 review
Buy this album from MMA partners

Album · 1982

Tracklist

A1 Charlie Parker's Last Supper 7:10
A2 Hymn from the Inferno 11:55
B1 What It Is 17:53

Total Time: 37:13

Line-up/Musicians

Bass – Cecil McBee
Drums – Dannie Richmond
Piano – Mal Waldron
Tenor Saxophone – Clifford Jordan

About this release

Enja Records – 4010 (Germany)

Recorded on November 15th, 1981 at Vanguard Studio, New York

Thanks to snobb for the updates

Buy MAL WALDRON - WHAT IT IS music

Amazon (logo)
What It IsWhat It Is
Enja 1994
$91.29
$16.18 (used)
Showing 1 items | Cache expiring in 64h | Keyword-based search | Best seller rank | More results on Amazon.com
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
0 results found for "mal waldron" what it is
Retry your search with "mal waldron" on eBay.com website
No items found | Keyword-based search | Ordered by ending time | See results on eBay.com

MAL WALDRON WHAT IT IS reviews

Specialists/collaborators reviews

snobb
Mal Waldron was best known in the States as Billie Holiday's regular pianist and one time Charles Mingus collaborator. Later, he had a strong following in Europe (where he lived for decades) and was a cult figure in Japan as well. Although rooted in hard bop during the early part of his career, Waldron began to experiment over the years. This was especially true during his stay in Europe, where he was apt to take part in free type sessions. Waldron's work with Steve Lacy, in particular, is well regarded among fans of the avant-garde. Waldron's playing has its own quirks, including an almost droneish approach at times, as well as a 'less-than-swing' feel for rhythm, that can be a make-or-break for possible fans.

Even knowing all of Waldron's playing, "What It Is", released on the German Enja label in 1982, is a stand-alone unique album. Unfortunately, it is not always well accepted by casual Waldron fans and critics. The all-star line up on here includes bassist Cecil McBee, former Mingus drummer Dannie Richmond and sax player Clifford Jordan. Even if all of these members in one or another way had some relations with avant-garde jazz, it's possible people expected well-cooked post-bop from a quartet like this, and possibly that is why this album has been in a shade for decades.

Just three long compositions, and all are real hell! High energy free jazz running ahead pushed by Waldron's repetitive drones and almost rock like heavy rhythm section with thunder-like drumming in front of the mix. Clifford Jordan, known generally as a mainstream sax player, demonstrates his freest playing ever, fast, aggressive and melodic all at the same time. In many ways, this quartet sounds ahead of their time and could be easily confused with the next century's young angry heavy free jazz team. It's interesting that this music, recorded in the 80s, demonstrates an alternative to the usual fusion/rock/RnB approach, an alternative which unfortunately has been never developed.

It's not strange that Waldron's earlier fans never accepted this release. Unfortunately, it hasn't been noticed by free jazz listeners as well, since they didn't expect such music coming from Waldron and Co. As a result, one of the greatest albums coming from the often "fruitless 80s" stays unknown for a wider audience until now.

Members reviews

No MAL WALDRON WHAT IT IS reviews posted by members yet.

Ratings only

  • Sean Trane

Write/edit review

You must be logged in to write or edit review

JMA TOP 5 Jazz ALBUMS

Rating by members, ranked by custom algorithm
Albums with 30 ratings and more
A Love Supreme Post Bop
JOHN COLTRANE
Buy this album from our partners
Kind of Blue Cool Jazz
MILES DAVIS
Buy this album from our partners
The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady Progressive Big Band
CHARLES MINGUS
Buy this album from our partners
My Favorite Things Hard Bop
JOHN COLTRANE
Buy this album from our partners

New Jazz Artists

New Jazz Releases

The Literature Post Bop
RICH HALLEY
Buy this album from MMA partners
Neocortex Nu Jazz
LOOP VERTIGO
Buy this album from MMA partners
Nyeusi Nu Jazz
JUSTIN BROWN
Buy this album from MMA partners
More Jazz Related RnB
ERIC ESSIX
Buy this album from MMA partners
Prismatic Colours 21st Century Modern
VOLKER ENGELBERTH
Buy this album from MMA partners
More new releases

New Jazz Online Videos

Loop Vertigo//Will
LOOP VERTIGO
js· 12 hours ago
Lots for Nothin'
JUSTIN BROWN
js· 14 hours ago
jazzahead! 2015 - Peedu Kass Momentum
PEEDU KASS
js· 20 hours ago
Shake It Up
ERIC ESSIX
js· 1 day ago
"Tuljak" Sooäär-Vaigla-Ruben trio
JAAK SOOÄÄR
js· 1 day ago
More videos

New JMA Jazz Forum Topics

More in the forums

New Site interactions

More...

Latest Jazz News

members-submitted

More in the forums

Social Media

Follow us