Made in Chicago – Jack Dejohnette, Muhal Richard Abrams, Larry Gray, Roscoe Mitchell, Henry Threadgill

I purchased this audio CD recording through an Amazon secondary supplier. It is an amazing concert with many unique textures of sound that envelop the listener.

The 50th anniversary celebration of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians continues to flourish with Made In Chicago, an exhilarating live album.

Henry Threadgill: alto saxophone, bass flute
Roscoe Mitchell: alto, soprano and sopranino saxophones, bass recorder, baroque flute
Muhal Richard Abrams: piano
Larry Gray: double bass, cello
Jack DeJohnette: drums

Jack DeJohnette celebrates a reunion with old friends. In 1962, DeJohnette, Roscoe Mitchell and Henry Threadgill were all classmates at Wilson Junior College on Chicago’s Southside, pooling energies and enthusiasms in jam sessions. Shortly thereafter Jack joined Muhal Richard Abrams’ Experimental Band, and Roscoe and Henry soon followed him. When Abrams cofounded the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians in 1965, DeJohnette, Mitchell and Threadgill were all deeply involved from the outset, presenting concerts and contributing to each other’s work under the AACM umbrella.

Jack brought them together again for a very special concert at Chicago’s Millenium Park in August 2013, completing the group with the addition of bassist/cellist Larry Gray. The concert recording featuring compositions by Roscoe, Henry, Muhal and Jack, plus group improvising was mixed by Manfred Eicher and Jack DeJohnette at New York’s Avatar Studio.

Pi Recordings

I gravitate towards recording labels that increase my musical awareness. I enjoy having my musical consciousness raised. A record label I continually draw innovative knowledge from is Pi Recordings.  Nate Chinen, jazz music journalist for the New York Times, wrote an authoritative column yesterday about Pi Recordings. (see link below) Their record label is furthering and shaping avant-garde jazz with the talent they are molding through collaborative support. This year marks Pi Recordings 10th anniversary.

Pi has forged a symbiotic relationship with the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM). Together they are forming key foundation building blocks that increase avant-garde jazz’s reach to new, accepting audiences.

The mission statement for Pi Recordings, crafted by visionary founders Seth Rosner and Yulun Wang states prophetically:

Pi Recordings is a New York-based record label dedicated to releasing innovative music by artists with unique and defining voices. Founded in 2001 with the release of two recordings of new music by Henry Threadgill, we have since been fortunate to work with some of the most influential composers and musicians in American music such as Muhal Richard Abrams, Roscoe Mitchell, The Art Ensemble of Chicago, Wadada Leo Smith, Anthony Braxton, Leroy Jenkins, James Blood Ulmer and Marc Ribot. At the same time, we are helping to nurture the voice of the best of this century’s young musicians. Artists like Vijay Iyer, Rudresh Mahanthappa, Liberty Ellman, Steve Lehman, Amir ElSaffar, and Corey Wilkes have all released CDs on Pi Recordings that document their growth as composers, improvisers and bandleaders.

We spotlight composers, improvisers and bandleaders who are pushing music in new, groundbreaking ways. Jazz artists have never had a wider musical palette at their disposal than now, and they are using it to create music that is more varied, profound and vibrant than ever before. Pi Recordings is here to capture what we recognize as the high points of these developments. The best of the best.