Track Selection: Piger, which apparently translates as “Girls” in ..umm.. Scandinavian. (Shihab)
Incredible music, amazing, Danish jazz from 1962, Sahib Shihab, improbably on alto, but Lars/Lasse Gullin pushes him off baritone as the local star on the big beast and the tenor position already taken by the leader, Moore.
Sahib Shihab (as) Brew Moore (ts) Lars (or Lasse) Gullin (bars) Louis Hjulmand (vibs) Bent Axen (p) Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen (b) William Schiopffe (d) recorded Copenhagen, Denmark, September 26, 1962
Brew Moore bio Probably more commonly known as Brew-who? Moore played tenor in the manner of Lester Young, and was famously quoted for saying “Anyone who doesn’t play like Lester Young is wrong“, a statement which any astute publicist would conclude was not a helpful signpost to their future career. A talented musician, constantly on the move, but dogged by bad timing.
A regular on the 50’s Greenwich Village scene, he sat in with Charlie Parker, and recorded as a leader for Savoy then Fantasy, but never managed to capture the attention of the big New York labels like Blue Note or Prestige that would have propelled his career into the limelight. In the mid Fifties, just as the New York jazz scene was hotting up, Brew moved west, to San Francisco.
In 1961, three or four years ahead of the curve, Moore left the States for Scandinavia, finding work in Sweden and Denmark, in the company of other Americans who had taken up residency there. In the years that followed, he moved between the US and Europe, recording for Debut, Steeplechase, Sonet, and Storyville,
His career ended abruptly after a gig in Copenhagen on March 19th 1973, when he fell down a restaurant flight of stairs and died in the ambulance on the way to hospital, just one week short of his forty-ninth birthday. A tragedy, but a less exotic jazz exit compared with bad drugs, cheated girlfriends with guns, and more mundanely, other people’s bad driving.
Beat Generation guru Jack Kerouac lionized the tenor man in great detail in his novel ‘Desolation Angels.’ Brew’s is music is found on only a few recorded works, but his saxophone, like that of Charlie Parker, lives on as a collector’s item.
A fabulous pot-pourri of three stunning energetic brass players underpinned by the Scandinavian rhythm section of choice. On bass, the man with too many names, Niels-Henning Orsted-Pedersen (or N-hop), on piano, the man with a name straight from a collision damage report, Bent Axen, and on drums, a man whose name even he has difficulty spelling, William Schiopffe. (Apologies to our Scandinavian friends, a litttle harmless fun. Please don’t go). The Danish Radio Jazz Orchestra, a great ensemble, included some of the players here.
Vinyl: originally released as Debut DEB 137 and Fantasy LP (8)6013
A Japanese reissue by Trio Electronics, of Trio-Kenwood Hifi, in conjunction with Alan Bates’ UK label Black Lion Records, founded in 1968, which also licensed the later works of Thelonious Monk and Ornette Coleman among others.
Weight 120gm vinyl, Stereo, typical of Japanese pressings of the Seventies and Eighties, though no indication when this was pressed .Fascinating that the label design should acknowledge the Black Lion provenance, perhaps indicating a complex licensing arrangement to bring this recording legally to the Japanese market. Its not a bad pressing, but has to be said, it could be a better pressing.
Sellers Description STEREO JAPANESE ISSUE ON TRIO RECORDS/BLACK LION. RECORDED 1962. Vinyl LP. FEATURES MODAL DANCE TRACK ‘PIGER’ PERFORMED AND WRITTEN BY SAHIB SHIHAB.
Grading: Vinyl: MINT- Cover: EX+
I can recall chasing an original copy a few years back, making a laughable bid as the price shot into the stratosphere. Now I know why. Amazing record I had a tough fight on my hands even for this modest little Japanese press (eight bidders)
I suspect it’s the “Modal Dance” handle that spiked interest. Suddenly it’s afternoon, the DJ Tendancy wake up in their East End DJ Collective commune, break open the aluminium 12″ record case they keep their sandwiches in (it’s the New Tupperware), fire up their smartphone’s Ebay app and get bidding on any permutation of the words Modal, Jazz, and Dance in the description. Good company to be in, eh?
You have not heard the last of Brew. A very tasty Savoy is winging its way from the Netherlands to the UK at this very moment. For one, I can’t get enough of this American/
Swedish Danish jazz, it’s great. May be there’s a word in Scandinavian for that?
PARENTAL ADVISORY: This post includes childish and mildly offensive references to: inhabitants of Nordic countries with funny names, Disc Jockeys and possibly other minority groups in need of taking down a peg, and a tangental reference to San Francisco. If you want to see other groups of people, cities or countries slighted or mocked, please be patient, I’ll get round to you.
Original Debut just came, and went. £300+ out of my league, shame. Real nice condition too