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Ballad of the Fallen

Charlie Haden & Carla Bley

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Album Review

The second recording by Charlie Haden's Liberation Music Orchestra utilizes a few alumni (the bassist/leader, trumpeters Don Cherry and Mike Mantler, tenor saxophonist Dewey Redman, drummer Paul Motian and pianist Carla Bley), along with other musicians who rose to prominence since the 1969 debut album (Jim Pepper and Steve Slagle on reeds, trombonist Gary Valante, guitarist Mick Goodrick, Sharon Freeman on French horn, and Jack Jeffers on tuba). As with the first set, the music mixes together some melodic but avant-garde explorations with revolutionary themes including songs from the Spanish Civil War, El Salvador, Portugal and Chile. "Too Late," a duet by Bley and Haden, serves as a change of pace. The music is quite credible and emotional, and has dated well.

Biography

Born: 06 August 1937 in Shenandoah, IA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

As a member of saxophonist Ornette Coleman's early bands, bassist Charlie Haden became known as one of free jazz's founding fathers. Haden has never settled into any of jazz's many stylistic niches, however. Certainly he's played his share of dissonant music — in the '60 and '70s, as a sideman with Coleman and Keith Jarrett, and as a leader of the Liberation Music Orchestra, for instance — but for the most part, he seems drawn to consonance. Witness his trio with saxophonist Jan Garbarek...
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Ballad of the Fallen, Charlie Haden
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