Blues For Allah (Live) CD (1996)

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Product Overview


Label Knitting Factory Works
SKU 60121639
UPC 035828018821
UPC 14 00035828018821
Format CD
Release Date 5/21/1996
Author Joe Gallant & Illuminati
Associated Artist/Work Kelsey, Chris
Technical Info
Engineer Alec Head; Brett Heinz
Producer Joe Gallant; Mark Perlson
CatalogID KFR 188
Lable Name Knitting Factory Works
Released 05/21/1996
Original Release 1996
Number of Discs 1
SPARE Code n/a
Length 72m : 38s
Mono/Stereo Stereo
Studio/Live Live
UPC 00035828018821
Musical Guests
Tom Constanten
Henry Kaiser
Album Notes and Credits
THE BLUES FOR ALLAH PROJECT features jazz arrangements of the Grateful Dead's entire BLUES FOR ALLAH album.
Personnel: Joe Gallant (contrabass guitar); David Gans (vocals, guitar); Ellen Christi, Jenna Mammina, Tony Mammina (vocals); Ralf Sturm (guitar); Todd Reynolds, Patti Weiss (violin); Robin Bonnell (cello); Bobby Strickland (soprano saxophone); Mike Sim (alto saxophone); Michael Blake (tenor saxophone); David Randall (trumpet); Steve Swell (trombone); Tom Constanten (piano); Evan Gallagher (organ); Bob Bralove (keyboards); Diana Herold (vibraphone, percussion); Grisha Alexiev (drums); Daniel Sadownick (percussion).
Recorded live at Knitting Factory Studios, New York, New York.
Joe Gallant is a New York-based bassist and composer, known to free jazz fans as a member of drummer Rashied Ali's Prima Materia group; however, Gallant's principal musical activity is as the leader of Illuminati, an unconventional big band. On Illuminati's earlier albums, Gallant's quirky original compositions carried the day. One gets a sense of where Gallant is coming from by simply looking at the instrumentation; Illuminati is no five saxes/trombones/trumpets blare-fest. Gallant prefers a more subtle palette. Illuminati cuts down on the brass, and adds strings, vibes, and electric keyboards. While the sound itself is markedly different from the typical big band, this CD takes the concept even further afield, as the band plays Gallant's ingenious arrangements of tunes from the Grateful Dead's classic album Blues for Allah. Gallant shows a real affinity for rock-based improv. His arrangements are meaty, yet leave plenty of room for jamming. The rhythm section cooks, the soloists are fine (soprano saxophonist Bobby Strickland reminds one of the rock tenorist Bobby Keyes, who in the '60s played an exciting riff-based sax with Joe Cocker). Indeed, this album -- recorded live at New York's Knitting Factory -- shares the same loose, ecstatic spirit as the best '60s R&B and rock, and Gallant's imaginative orchestrations lend contemporary relevance. A really fun album. ~ Chris Kelsey
Professional Reviews
JazzTimes (11/96, p.82) - "...Gallant breathes a whole other vitality into the Dead's innovative BLUES FOR ALLAH album with an exciting big band arrangement. He's made it horn driven, bluesy and gospel-tinged....The energy of it practically leaps off the CD at you..."
Option (9-10/96, pp.106-107) - "...I would regard many of Gallant's interpretations to be improvements on the originals....the project as a whole receives my vote as a solid success..."
Disc 1
1 Invocation
2 Help On The Way / Slipknot! / Franklin's Tower
3 King Solomon's Marbles
4 Music Never Stopped, The
5 Crazy Fingers
6 Sage And Spirit
7 Prelude
8 Blues For Allah

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