Jazz Bonus: Joachim Kühn – Scream For Peace

Between May 1968 and the end of 1969, Paris became the Mecca of new jazz. Many American musicians who struggle to make a living from their activity in the United States stay in the capital. Thus: Don Cherry, Sunny Murray, Marion Brown, Anthony Braxton, Alan Silva, Chicago Art Ensemble … Next to them, the new French Guard gained confidence and liberated themselves with Jef Gilson, Michel Portal, Bernard Vitet, François Tusques, Jean- François Jenny-Clark, Henri Texier, Jacques Thollot …

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Under their fingers, free jazz takes shape: musical structures implode, raw energy is in order, the use of poly-instrumentalism becomes widespread, the duration of the pieces explodes, African but also oriental roots reappear, and for some musicians political discourse is insoluble intertwined with the music; from the black panthers to the cobblestones of Paris, freejazz has resonated with current events. Pianist Joachim Kühn, who had fled East Germany since May 1966, quickly identified the problems at stake here and moved to Paris in June 1969 to mingle with the joyous surrounding clutter. It was also at this time that he adopted the alto saxophone in addition to the piano, an instrument that was more conducive to the aesthetics of the shout.

The New Thing then invites to many Parisian clubs, to theaters, to the American Center, to the Parc Floral de Vincennes, to the Museum of Modern Art and of course to the Maison de la Radio, where André Francis is widespread, “Mister Jazz” from the airwaves. It was he who recorded this concert of the Joachim Kühn Trio on October 12, 1969 at the Museum of Modern Art on the occasion of the Paris Biennale.




54 min

Among the pianist’s many musical archives, our choices were jointly determined with him at this concert, perfectly illustrating what the trio was playing live at the time, highly improvised and hyperexpressive music. The sound restoration work was carried out in collaboration with INA for this vinyl “Scream for peace”, The first stone of the collection. Each page opens with a long piece that makes us feel all the fever, all the intoxication from freejazz, and ends with a ballad of crazy lyrics. And you will understand how urgent the cry is driven by a cruel saxophone, to give us this cry for peace. A cry that is unfortunately still relevant today.

Joachim Kuhn
Born in Leipzig in 1944, Joachim Kühn is at the beginning of the new jazz in East Germany with his trio formed with double bassist Klaus Koch and drummer Reinhard Schwartz, sometimes amplified by his brother clarinetist Rolf Kühn or by Ernst-Ludwig Petrowsky, a formation that began in 1964. After his flight to the West in 1966, the pianist lived in West Germany, California, New York, Paris (1969-1971 then 1984-1993) before settling in Ibiza from 1993. A great agitator for free jazz the revolution in Europe, which at the time was a leading player in the jazz-rock epic of the seventies, Kühn has liberated the solo piano for fifty years, tamed the alto saxophone, traveled the world as the leader of one of the most prestigious jazz trios with Daniel Humair and Jean-François Jenny-Clark. His encounters are innumerable, from Michel Portal to Stan Getz, from Don Cherry to Louis Sclavis, from Barney Wilen to Chet Baker, from the Gnawas of the Desert to Carolyn Carlson, passing through the great American champions with whom they play in the duet (Ornette) . Coleman, Archie Shepp, Pharoah Sanders …).




54 min

Jean-Francois Jenny-Clark
In the 1960s, the double bassist Jean-François Jenny-Clark (known as JF), sometimes with Jacques Thollot, sometimes with Aldo Romano, formed a rhythm that quickly became the most popular on the Parisian scene. All traveling American musicians visit her for their concerts in clubs, whether they are free jazzmen or hard-boppers. Thus we will find JF together with Don Cherry, Steve Lacy, Nathan Davis, Slide Hampton, Charles Tolliver, Keith Jarrett … At the same time he won the first prize for double bass from the Versailles Conservatory, then in Paris (1968) and is actively involved in contemporary music through the ensemble Musique Vivante created in 1966 by Diego Masson. Jenny-Clark works with Karlheinz Stockhausen, John Cage, Maurizio Kagel and records under the direction of Luciano Berio, Pierre Boulez or Vinko Globokar. Over the following decades, thanks to his playing of incredible finesse, he became one of the most sought after double bassists by jazzmen around the world. Unfortunately, death cut him off at the age of 54.

Jacques Thollot
Drummer prodigy trained with Kenny Clarke, Jacques Thollot finds himself in accompanying the big names passing through Paris (Chet Baker, Bud Powell …) on Blue Note or on Caméléon: he is not yet fifteen years old. He resolutely opened up to modernity in the early 1960s in Jef Gilson’s orchestra, then with Eric Dolphy, with whom he performed at Chat qui Pêche. With JF, he formed big trios with Jean-Louis Chautemps and Barney Wilen, but especially with Joachim Kühn at the end of the decade. His career will then include a few crosses of the desert, but Jacques Thollot will leave us a handful of lavish albums recorded as a lead, as well as his solo album: When the Sound Gets Acute, Throw the Giraffe Into the Sea, released the Futura brand in 1970, a unclassifiable and glorious monument.
(excerpt from the press release)





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