Timeless Gems: Tom's Personal Selection Pt. 3

We present the last installment of just a partial sampling of my favorite music. It’s eclectic, all over the place, which is just the way I like it.

We begin with the short-lived sensational pan-Francophone band Orchestre National de Barbès, named after a North African/Arab neighborhood in Paris. It is the carrefour, or crossroads, where the 9th, 10th, and 18th arrondissements meet. The group made one appearance in L.A. on Bastille Day, July 14, 1998, the very same night that I was awarded the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government. It was an evening that I’ll never forget.

French guitarist/oud player Thierry Robin is next, with a lilting song from his album Un Ciel de Cuivre (Copper Sky). Then some salsa grooves from the great Tito Puente follows, from a recording of a 1966 concert in Puerto Rico.

We continue with two great cuts from iconic jazz artists: “On Green Dolphin Street” by Miles Davis and his quintet from December 1965 at Chicago’s Plugged Nickel club (great solo by Wayne Shorter), followed by a mystical song from John Coltrane, “Tunji,” named after Nigerian percussionist Michael Babatunde Olatunji, with whom Coltrane studied.

Turkish musicians Erkan Ogur and Ismail Demircioglu are next, with an entrancing song that’s always captivated me.  Ditto for Algerian-born, Paris-based bass player Michel Benita, whose album River Silver was one of my favorite albums over the past year.

We finish the show this week with some vocals. First, an old English mining ballad sung by Maddy Prior and June Tabor, “The Old Miner,” and Norwegian composer Ola Gjielo, whose last name I’m at a loss to pronounce!

If you like what you hear, I hope you’ll come follow us on Rhythm Planet’s Facebook page!

Rhythm Planet Playlist for 9/23/16:

  1. Orchestre National De Barbes / “Alaoui” / En Concert / Tinder
  2. Thierry Robin / “Petite-mère Sultane” / Un Ciel de Cuivre / Naive
  3. Tito Puente / “Babarabatiri” / In Puerto Rico / Tico
  4. Miles Davis / “On Green Dolphin Street” / Live at the Plugged Nickel / CBS Sony Music
  5. John Coltrane / “Tunji” / Coltrane / Impulse
  6. Erkan Ogur & Ismail H. Demircioglu / “Zeynep” / Gulun Kokusu Vardi / Kalan Muzik
  7. Michel Benita & Ethics / “Off the Coast” / River Silver / ECM
  8. Maddy Prior & June Tabor: Silly Sisters / “The Old Miner” / No More To The Dance / Shanachie/Topic
  9. Ola Gjeilo & Voces8 / “Ubi Caritas” / Ola Gjeilo / Decca/London

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Tom Schnabel