Sunday, November 23, 2008

Ernest Dawkins - Jo'burg Jump (Delmark, 2000)

I came across this album while listening to Pandora, and was really impressed so I clicked the link, bought the album through iTunes, and I was glad I did. This is a very good mix of AACM style Chicago jazz, blues and South African township music like the legendary Blue Notes. The group is made up of Ernest Dawkins on tenor and alto saxophones, Ameen Muhammad on trumpet, Steve Berry on trombone, Yosef Ben Israel on bass, Avreeayl Ra on drums and Jeff Parker on guitar. Each of the tracks on this disc was impressive, but "Shorter Suite" which uses the enigmatic nature of the music of Wayne Shorter as a starter as a starting point, and "Turtle Island Dance" adds flute and exotic instruments to great effect. Apparently Dawkins and the band were inspired by the warm reception they received during a South African tour, and that enthusiasm is palpable. At the heart of it all is the earthy core of jazz that makes all of the music here accessible and enjoyable.
Jo'burg Jump -

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