Abdullah Ibrahim – African Piano (1970/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 38:45 minutes | 772 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: HDTracks | Digital Booklet | © JAPO Records

Sometimes a musical message is so urgent that questions of recording quality are almost beside the point. Informally recorded in 1969 in a noisy club – Copenhagen’s famous Jazzhus Montmartre – the flavour of African Piano is ‘documentary’ rather than luxuriantly hi-fidelity, yet the essence of Abdullah Ibrahim’s communication comes through loud and clear. The listener is drawn into the robust rhythms of his solo piano style, as he re-examines the history of jazz from a South African perspective, with echoes of songs of the townships, and vamps that hint of Monk and Duke and much more. African Piano was a highly influential album, and it has lost none of its power.

Pianist Abdullah Ibrahim was still known as “Dollar Brand” when he recorded this solo piano set for ECM; it has been reissued on CD under his original name. The continuous live performance (which is under 39 minutes) explores eight of Ibrahim’s originals…Ibrahim was still in the process of finding his own sound at the time, although his improvisations (which use repetition and vamps effectively) have their interesting moments. Still, Ibrahim’s later work is more significant. ~~AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow

1. Bra Joe from Kilimanjaro 11:11
2. Selby That the Eternal Spirit Is the Only Reality 02:23
3. The Moon 08:08
4. Xaba 00:41
5. Sunset in Blue 04:25
6. Kippy 05:05
7. Jabulani – Easter Joy 02:07
8. Tintiyana 04:45

Abdullah Ibrahim, piano