Oliver Lake: Fire Waltz

14 Sep

Oliver Laker

Oliver Lake's 1976 album on the Black Saint record label Holding Together. We're glad he is.

Birthday greetings to saxophonist Oliver Lake, who celebrates No. 69 today.

His website calls him a Renaissance Man because of the variety of his interests beyond playing and composing music — writing poetry, painting, performing, etc. Lake is nothing if not unorthodox, and often he’ll combine his music and his poetry; whatever he does, and however he does it, he’ll evoke a reaction from his audience. Whatever it is.

Best known for his work in the World Saxophone Quartet, Lake certainly hasn’t been limited by it, and has worked with a diverse group of artists, some only once, and some regularly, like the group Trio 3 he formed with Reggie Workman and Andrew Cyrille. All are undaunted.

“We’ve tried to disintegrate the boundaries of the music,” Lake said, in an interview with New Jersey Public Television, of Trio 3, “while trying to move the music forward in the spirit of someone (like) Coltrane, in the spirit of Miles Davis, in the spirit of Duke Ellington . . . All of these musicians before us were striving to get to the next level. And I think each one of us has that same concept, and that’s what people come to us for. They know they’re going to hear something different. They’re not going to hear traditionally sounding jazz.”

Often it can sound like his poetry, or even be his poetry. Lake’s poem separation, from his website and off the back of the album NTU: Point From Which Creation Begins:

first it’s the salad
then the meat
then the vegetables

“WAIT”

bring all my food at one time one the same plate!
dixieland, be-bop, soul, rhythm & blues, cool school, swing, avante-
garde, jazz, free jazz, rock, jazz-rock

WHAT KINDA MUSIC U PLAY?

“GOOD KIND’

Aretha franklin & Sun Ra is the same folks
Coltrane & the Dixie humming birds same folks
Miles & muddy waters same, there is no …….. there is no ……..

LABELS DIVIDE! SEPARATE
THE ORAL AND THE LITERARY

One music–diff feelings & experience, but same. . . .the total
sound–mass sound–hear all the players as one

THE HISTORY OF AFRICA WAS MEMORIZED, LIVED EXPERIENCED, NOWED!
“WE DIDN’T READ IT WE DID IT!”

A link to Lake’s quintet playing the Mal Waldron piece Fire Waltz below:

Sources: Oliverlake.net

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