Paul Plimley & Trichy Sankaran - Ivory Ganesh Meets Doctor Drums (CD)

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SKU: SGL1523-2

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A collaboration between two eminent Canadians, masters of different traditions: jazz piano and Karnatak percussion.

This is a collaboration between two eminent Canadians who are masters of different traditions. Plimley is well known for his ecumenical style, involving jazz, improv, and western classical elements among others, as documented on his 1996 solo record Everything in Stages (Songlines) - and he brings it all to the table here. Sankaran is one of the most celebrated practitioners of Karnatak music, the rhythmically complex classical tradition of South India. The result of their meetings is this program of duos, some compositionally based and others improvised, in which the musicians explore the various ways their instruments and musical knowledge can relate.

For example, Sankaran's composition 'Jhampalaya II' sets the Indian mood immediately with a tamboura drone which continues during his solo on mrdangam (double-headed drum), then lays out as Plimley's solo pulls the piece back into jazz territory. 'Sevens and Eights', a joint composition characterized by Cecil Taylorish tone clusters and alternating segments of 7/8 and 4/4, reverts to a freeish 4/4 during the improvised section, a witty stop-start conversation that keeps both players on their toes. Paul's 'Skipping' has a syncopated, oddly bluesy feel, while his 'Many Happy Returns' contains echoes of stride piano and Schubert; these are tunes that could work equally well in a more conventionally jazzy context but gain in piquancy for their Indian dialect. The other pieces are all improvised, with Sankaran acting as a highly responsive accompanist, displaying a flexible time sense which uses the building blocks of tala but doesn't lock the dialogue within rhythmic cycles, drawing a remarkable range of timbral and dynamic shading from his kanjiras (tambourines), and occasionally taking the lead in shaping the music's development.

Track Listing

    • Would You Like To Start'
    • Sevens and Eights
    • Voyage On Waters West And East
    • Three Sighs to The Moon
    • Tambouree
    • Conversation Between Two Dancers
    • Jhampalaya II
    • Skipping
    • Thrashcan Delight
    • Semi-Subliminal
    • Many Happy Returns

    Additional Details

    Label: Songlines

    Genre: Jazz

    Run Time: 51 mins

    Release Date: 09/01/98

    UPC: 774355152324

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