ETERNALLY FLOWING WATER - YOU CAN’T GET EVER HAVE ENOUGH !
It’s now over seven years ago that the jazz world lost one of its most original voices: Jim Pepper, the saxophonist with an unmistakeably own individual sound, with original compositions and an ardent voice. Tutu Records has the good fortune to possess a few live recordings. Here’s a selection from them! The Flying Eagle made a stop-over at the New Morning in Paris to create a scintillating live ambience…Not just a casual jam based on stale jazz standards with never-ending solos, as so often is the case, but an improvising ‘working band’, with a comcept that just keeps the sparks flying!
Too often, Jim Pepper’s music was patronisingly entitled Red Indian jazz. With the present album, it becomes abundantly clear once again, that this is very short of the truth. Not just the other personalities who’re involved are a guarantee for the consistently high artistic standard of the improvisation: Mal Waldron with a typically light hand on the piano, as also the utterly appropriate rhythm section with Ed Schuller on bass and John Betsch on the drums, “swinging’ as swing can”; and of course, first and foremost, Jim Pepper himself, that great tylist and improvisor!
In the “Pep” classic, Three-Quarter Gemini, all the particpants leave you their visiting cards. And in addition to this, two ballads: In Paris, Pepper seemed to find himself repeatedly Somewhere Over The Rainbow; and then there’s the original Mal Waldron ballad, Soul Mates, in this live quartet set-up, the studio version of which the composer once spontaneously dedicated to his duo partner, Jim Pepper. A very special surprise is Ski-Jumpin’ Blues, with verses about Jim Pepper’s highly personal grappling with the border zones of living, his crazy life! And of course, what can’t be left out, as a starter, that vergreen, Witchi Tia To, trimmed with a medley that picks up the most popular Pepper tunes, robust and poetic at once; a catchy tune - but also a litany - to that “eternally flowing water” - which you can’t ever get enough of.