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Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Borgato handmade grand-piano


Proudly handmade, one at a time and accordingly priced, in Sossano, Vicenza (Italy).

These instruments represent the Zenith of piano making.

Happy 50th anniversary


Rarest 7” twins discs


Two pearls from the duo Andre Levy-Andre Collard on French Lumen LD1-432A and LD1- 433A, 45rpm, 7 inch Extended Plays (EP) original mono pressings from 1950, issued in two individual covers in rare design  couplings 

This is a rarest recital from them "Un Violoncelle Chante".

Andre Levy, cello, accompanied by Andre Collard at the piano. 

This is one of Holy Grails of French cello recitals on compact vinyl pressings.

Thanking Saulo Zucchello,

Sunday, March 21, 2021

John McLaughlin’s lesson 🥇


Good dog, happy man...

Stradivari’s strings


Traduction of the Stradivari text:’ these are the example of the three thick strings: the sample that shows between the wire turns  the gut core must be twisted in imitation of the vitalba plant’. The Vitalba plant goes around trees in a spiralized way.

Friday, March 19, 2021

Fred McDowell rests in peace, now...


... after his gravestone was (correctly) re-done, thanking Bonnie Raitt🥇🎶🎶🎶🥇

Thursday, March 18, 2021

RIP Marcel Roggero, audiophile extraordinaire


An HUGE inspiration for myself and cohorts of audiophiles, worldwide... his system and dedication were unique.

Sad news learning he passed away yesterday.

A lesser world, today.

Saturday, March 6, 2021

Enrico Rava’s NYC


New York, New York!

 I installed myself at the Barbieri's, on eighty-first street, between first and second avenue.  There are five of us in a studio: Gato, Michelle, daughter Rochelle, my wife Graciela and myself.  Too many.  We love each other, this is true, but living together in these conditions is not easy.  So I try to stay at home as little as possible and start doing my exploratory tours.

 The 81st horizontally crosses the island of Manhattan passing through Central Park right next to the Metropolitan Museum.  A few blocks north of the Met is the Guggenheim.  From that point of view we are in good shape.  Going north you arrive at the ninety-sixth which is the watershed between the German area (beer halls with music - alas - South Tyrolean - gastronomy with Bavarian and Westphalian products and excess blondes) and the Spanish Harlem (Puerto Ricans, Salvadorans, salsa, chillies, percussion  ).  A nice cultural contrast.

 There, on the corner of 96 with Lexington, is the house where Carla Bley, Mike Mantler and their daughter Karen live.  Karen is just over a year old and is the most beautiful girl in the world.  She looks a lot like her mother and more than she is dressed the same.  Seen together, they are an irresistible sight.  Carla was working on the music for Gary Burton's new album "Original Tong Funeral", putting the finishing touches on her opera "Escalator Over the Hill".

 Proceeding instead on 81, crossing Central Park, you come out on Central Park West, which runs along it as well as on the other side it is flanked by Fifth Avenue.  You are immediately in front of the Dakota Building which 15 years later the murder of John Lennon would have made sadly famous.

 A few blocks from there lives Paul Motian who will be on drums with me in Steve Lacy's new band.  Not far away lives Joao Gilberto with his wife Miucha (also a good singer and sister of Chico Buarque) and little Bebel.  A few blocks south we find Lee Konitz with his wife Victoria.

 Going south (downtown) on Broadway is the theater area.  Traffic, luminous signs, confusion and then, wonder of wonders, the musician's paradise: Forty-eighth street where, concentrated in one block, there are one after another the best-stocked musical instrument shops in the world.  When in Italy to buy a Martin or a Conn trumpet it was a question, at best, of waiting a month or two, in that street there was every good thing. In particular Manny's where, moreover, it was very likely to meet Rollins,  or Kenny Dorham or Joe Henderson.

 Going down 6th Avenue (Avenida Las Americas) you will arrive at the West Village.  We pass in front of another paradise, that of gluttons: Balducci’s where you can find everything that someone like me could want after taking out a mortgage.  Obviously, all this unfortunately no longer exists today, neither Balducci, nor the instrument shops of the 48th.  What a rip off!

 A small detour takes you to Seventh Avenue South.  The most loved and probably the oldest jazz club in the world: the Village Vanguard.  Founded in 1935 by Max Gordon, it is still there, where everyone, absolutely everyone, has played, from Coltrane to Rollins, from Bill Evans to Gil Evans.  I would have played there too sometime a couple of years later and I must say that playing where the history of great jazz has gone is an emotion for which I am short of adjectives.

 Always going south, passing through Little Italy, here we are in Soho.  Today one of the fashion districts.  Art galleries, prestigious restaurants, stylists, design, super chic shops.  In 1967, however, it was an area of ​​abandoned warehouses, completely uninhabited with non-existent night lighting.  With very few dollars he could rent a huge loft, in fact Steve Lacy had found a very large one in Church Street, where we would rehearse with the new band or sometimes jam where Don Cherry, Dollar Brand, Roswell would come and play with us.  Rudd, Andrew Cyrille and all the others.

 In the East Village, in St. Marks Place, on the other hand, there is the Five Spot.  Newer club run by the Termini brothers.  Opened by Cecil Taylor, it would host the Monk quartet with Johnny Griffin.  Then with Coltrane and for a couple of weeks with Lacy.  Next door the Public Theater, in Lafayette Street, where a few months later I would record the first part of Escalator Over the Hill with Carla Bley and La JCOA.

 A hundred meters further on “The Dom”, a huge club where at that time Tony Scott played almost permanently with Bill Evans and Paul Motian.  Immediately after the house where Ornette Coleman lived.

 More and more to the east one entered one of the most deprived neighborhoods of NY: the Lower East Side.  Houses in pieces, many windows with cardboard instead of glass, pantegane as large as this, piles of garbage and sidewalks dotted with beer bottles.  Toxic, alcoholics, homeless people, people without hope, this was the fauna of this neighborhood in 1967 and which obviously has become a very pleasant residential area for many years.

 Well, at 242 East 3rd Street, between Avenue B and C, right in the middle of this squalor, there was the "Slugs", the most interesting club of those years, where the most modern and most adventurous music was played.  The place was the least attractive you can imagine, but what wonderful music I heard in there!  Cecil Taylor, Archie Shepp with Gracham Moncur and Roswell Rudd, Jackie McLean, Lee Morgan, Sun Ra… what wonderful memories.

 Not far from Slugs, a little further north and a little further east, is Tompkins Square park, but I'll tell you about this next time.