FIRE OVER THE EARTH
Leo Smith Trio
The Mass on the World
Moers : 1978
LS, trumpet, flugelhorn, percussion; Dwight Andrews, reeds; Bobby Naughton, percussion.
We’re a bit slow in announcing the winner of our contest — but hopefully you won’t mind a few more moments of suspense. And we hope you’ll enjoy these tracks from Wadada Leo Smith’s rare 1978 album The Mass on the World. These stripped-down tunes find Wadada in an unusual trio format, a fluid group without any bass. Recorded at the 7th Moers Festival, May 15, 1978, the songs and album title borrow from Teilhard de Chardin’s Hymn of the Universe, a poetic and impressionistic account of the spiritual world first published in 1961. There is a spareness to the music that suits the material that (presumably) inspired it, a patient, probing quality typical of Smith’s output. The concert closer, “Kweli (Truth),” is the only tune not to take its title from the Hymn, and it contains the most sustained blowing — a fitting capper to a spellbinding set.
THE MAGIC NUMBER
For the giveaway of Wadada Leo Smith’s massive 4-CD Ten Freedom Summers, we were thinking of a number between 1 and 200. Or more accurately, we used the random number generator to pick those digits. And that number was… 147. Congratulation to Joe Higham from Belgium!
ABOUT THE WINNER
Joe says: “I must say I nearly didn’t bother entering, I thought it would be impossible to get ‘the’ right number. I’m one of the reviewers who’s been reviewing on ‘Free jazz blog‘ since quite a few years. I’d noticed Stef’s review of the album – which naturally he loves – and was extremely curious. I didn’t have a chance to hear that album as it wasn’t sent out to me, so now the problem is resolved, I can finally get to hear it for myself.” Joe chose Wadada’s Dark Lady of the Sonnets as a fave WLS, adding “but there’s so much to choose from, a very prolific performer.”
Many thanks to the kind folks over at Cuneiform Records for providing us with this prize. You can and should purchase a copy of the wonderful Ten Freedom Summers, over at Cuneiform, or the music purveyor of your choice.