"Some of the most exciting sounds to be heard in busy London in the early 1970s..." - Downbeat
"...a big band as sophisticated as Duke Ellington's, but as riotous as a New Orleans street parade." - Launch
Most folks reading this know the story of Chris McGregor and his magnificent, fun and wild big band, The Brotherhood Of Breath, comprised of fellow South African exiles as well as the cream of the early/mid 70s British jazz scene. During their heyday, they were only able to release three studio albums and all were out of print within a few years and despite the huge acclaim they received during from the period of about 1971-1975, Chris and the Brotherhood were basically forgotten by the time of Chris' death in 1990.
Luckily, the band performed many, many concerts and a good number of these concerts were recorded. With the release of our first archival album by Chris and the Brotherhood, huge acclaim for our releases and even better, notice for the band, began to happen and they are now rightly recognized as one of the major bands annd figures of Brit-jazz in the 1970s.
ECLIPSE AT DAWN
Eclipse at Dawn captures the band at an early peak, performing in front of a huge, rapturous crowd at the Berliner Jazztage on November 4, 1971. Recorded by German radio, this is probably the best live recording of the Brotherhood in existence! Included in the 16 page booklet are never-before published photos from the concert and liner notes.
BREMEN TO BRIDGEWATER
This release, Bremen to Bridgewater, contains two CDs of previously unreleased live recordings made in Germany and England during two very different periods of the band’s career. The German radio recordings were made on June 20th, 1971 at Lila Uele, a well known jazz club in Bremen. The English recordings were made at the Bridgewater Arts Center, during two tours that the band made with different lineups in February and November of 1975, and feature some of the very last recordings of trumpeter Mongezi Feza, who died in December of that year. The band’s lineups on these recordings are a veritable who's who of British free jazz, and include Harry Beckett, Marc Charig, Elton Dean, Nick Evans, Harry Miller, Louis Moholo, Mike Osborne, Evan Parker, Dudu Pukwana, Alan Skidmore, Gary Windo and others. In addition to the stunning music, this CD features a 12 page booklet with rare and beautiful photos and detailed liner notes by Francesco Martinelli.
"...a galaxy of talent, all playing with such ferocity and commitment." - The Wire
South African born and raised pianist/bandleader Chris McGregor formed the racially mixed Blue Notes in the early 1960's, touring and trying to get by in extremely difficult political circumstances as best they could. By 1964, facing continous government harassment, Chris & the Blue Notes fled their South African homeland, finally settling in London in 1966. They made a huge impact on London's jazz scene and befriended many in London's emerging avant-garde jazz community. By 1969, the Blue Notes had drifted apart. Not too long afterwards, Chris formed The Brotherhood Of Breath, which was essentially the Blue Notes, augmented by a large number of the friends that they had made in the British jazz community. The band toured constantly during their peak years of 1971-74, but they only released 3 albums in their lifetime. Travelling Somewhere was recorded at a well known jazz club in Bremen, Germany on January 19th, 1973 for radio broadcast, and is by far the best recorded live document of the Brotherhood. The 12 piece band is a who's who of many of the big names of British free jazz of the early/mid 1970's: Harry Beckett, Mark Charig & Mongezi Feza (trumpets), Nick Evans & Malcolm Griffiths (trombones), Mike Osborne, Evan Parker, Dudu Pukwana & Gary Windo (saxes), Chris McGregor (piano), Harry Miller (double bass) and Louis Moholo (drums). Called "One of the truly legendary modern jazz big bands" by The Penguin Guide To Jazz On CD, Travelling Somewhere adds to the band's still growing legacy, and will bring their music to a new generation of fans.