Art Ensemble of Chicago -
1ST ISSUE 1970 STEREO AMERICA LP AMERICA 30 AM 6117.
Made in France/America Records
Vinyl: VG+ A couple light marks
Cover: Light wear on edges
NOTES ARE BY VALERIE WILMER!
SIDE ONE: PART ONE 'HOW STRANGE; PART TWO 'OLE JED'
SIDE TWO 'HORN WEB'
1ST EDITION COPY OF THIS HIGHLY COMBUSTIBLE FREE JAZZ CLASSIC.
Members of what was to become the Art Ensemble performed together under various band names in the mid-sixties, releasing their first album, Sound, as the Roscoe Mitchell Sextet in 1966. The Sextet included saxophonist Roscoe Mitchell, trumpeter Lester Bowie and bassist Malachi Favors Maghostut, who over the next year went on to play together as the Roscoe Mitchell Art Ensemble. In 1967 they were joined by fellow AACM members Joseph Jarman (saxophone) and Philip Wilson (drums), and made a number of recordings for Nessa.
In 1969 the band members (minus Wilson, who had left to join Paul Butterfield's band) travelled to Paris, where they became known as the Art Ensemble of Chicago. The immediate impetus for the name change came from a French promoter who added "Chicago" to the name for purely descriptive purposes, but the new name stuck because band members felt that it better reflected the cooperative nature of the group. In Paris the ensemble's distinctive music with percussion roles dispersed throughout among the quartet was documented in a range of records on the Freedom and BYG labels. They also recorded "Comme à la radio" with Brigitte Fontaine and Areski Belkacem as a drummerless quartet before welcoming percussionist Famoudou Don Moye to the group in 1970. The ensemble returned to the United States in 1972, and the quintet of Mitchell, Jarman, Bowie, Favors and Moye remained static until 1993.
In 1970 the ensemble recorded two albums with Fontella Bass, then Lester Bowie's wife. These were The Art Ensemble of Chicago with Fontella Bass and Les Stances A Sophie. The latter was the soundtrack from the French movie of the same title. Bass' vocals, backed by the powerful pulsating push of the band has allowed the Theme De YoYo to remain an underground cult classic ever since.