André Hodeir (arr, dir), Roger Guérin, Jean Liesse, Buzz Gardner, Donald Byrd, Idrees Sulieman (tp), Nat Peck, André Paquinet, Frank Rehak (tb), Jean Aldegon, Hubert Rostaing, Hal McKusick (as), Raymond Guiot (fl), Bobby Jaspar, Georges Grenu (ts), Armand Migiani (bs), Martial Solal, Eddie Costa (p), Sadi, Jean-Pierre Drouet (vib), Pierre Michelot, George Duvivier (b), Jacques David, Christian Garros, Kenny Clarke, Bobby Donaldson (d), Christiane Legrand, Annie Ross (vcl)
Reference: FSRCD 945_2
Bar code: 8427328609456
André Hodeir (1921-2011) was one of the world’s most literate composers and working critics in the world of jazz. He began his career as a violin player, a path he abandoned three years after joining the Paris Conservatoire in 1942, to concentrate on his work as an arranger and writer.
For Hodeir, who had classic training but felt drawn to the aesthetic of jazz, the problem was how to transcend the frame of his technique and recreate it in jazz terms. So to figure it out, in 1949 he went into a long period of silence that would last until 1954, when he made his first recording with the Jazz Groupe de Paris. This opportunity gave him a chance to crystallize the concepts he had been working on for five years. “At the time of the creation of the Jazz Groupe de Paris, there was nothing set in stone in my writing, it was all sketches I needed to try out. That’s also the reason I gave the title Essais to the pieces resulting from this project.”
Hodeir wrote his most avant-garde work for the Jazz Groupe, among whose members were some of the best soloists in Paris. Their collective effort led them to become one of the most sought-after jazz units in Europe, and Hodeir’s recordings with them earned him a world following that led to his American debut for the Savoy label. For this new session, he put together an all-star jazz band that would revisit his first six Essais, as well as record three new original compositions.
In 1957, John Lewis best described Hodeir’s musical attitude in a Down Beat article, when he said: “He’s giving people ideas and directions and things to do. His work itself is of value, but he’s also showing others by his work what can be done in many areas.”
01. Cross Criss 3:57
02. Paraphrase 4:19
03. On a Standard 3:42
04. Esquisse (I) 2:35
05. Paradoxe (II) 3:27
06. On a Blues 4:01
07. Parisian Thoroughfare (Bud Powell) 3:52
08. Evanescene 4:02
09. Bicinium 3:11
10. On a Scale 4:21
11. Jordu (Duke Jordan) 3:50
12. Criss Cross (Thelonious Monk) 5:15
13. Tension détente 3:29
14. Paradoxe 2:05
15. Triads 5:20
16. Milano (John Lewis) 4:14
17. Trope a Saint-Trop 3:12
18. Osymetrios (I) 3:37
19. Osymetrios (II) 3:28
01. A Shout: Le rêve inviolable (The Inviolable Dream) 1:30
02. A Sketch: Souvenir de lui-même (Memory of Himself) 1:56
03. A Scat: Multiple et solitaire (Multiple and Solitary) 0:50
04. A Ballad: Connaît-il son désir? (Does It Know Its Desire?) 2:20
05. A Horn: Vivre encore une vie (To Live A Life Once More) 1:17
06. A Chord: Dans l’attente nocturne (In Nocturnal Expectation) 0:55
07. A Vocalizing: Déjà vit-il sa mort (He Is Already Living His Death) 1:09
08. La nécessité (The Necessity) 1:01
09. L’Obsession (The Obsession) 1:43
10. Le voyage (The Trip) 1:22
11. Les masques (The Masks) 2:28
12. Les miroirs (The Mirrors) 2:11
13. La solitude (Solitude) 2:59
14. Le tombeau (The Tomb) 0:59
15. Flautando 3:45
16. Jazz et jazz 3:03
17. Cross Criss 4:16
18. Paraphrase 4:13
19. Esquisse (I) 2:45
20. On a Blues 5:06
21. Make Up Your Mind 6:27
22. Esquisse (II) 2:59
23. On a Riff 2:54
24. On a Standard 3:45
25. Paradoxe II 3:44
26. The Alphabet 11:20
All titles composed by André Hodeir, unless indicated.
Sources CD 1:
Tracks #1-6, from the 10-inch album “Essais d’André Hodeir” (Swing M 33353)
Tracks #7-16, from the album “Le Jazz Groupe de Paris joue André Hodeir”
(Vega V 30 M 572)
Tracks #17-19, from the album “Jazz et Jazz – Nouvelles oeuvres d’André Hodeir”
(Fontana 680.208 ML)
Sources CD 2:
Tracks #1-16, from the album “Jazz et Jazz – Nouvelles oeuvres d’André Hodeir”(Fontana 680.208 ML)
Tracks #17-20 & 22-26, from the album “American Jazzmen Play Hodeir’s Essais”
(Savoy MG 12104)
Track #21, was included as a bonus on the album
“Billy Ver Planck and His Orchestra – Dancing Jazz” (Savoy MG 12101)
Personnel on CD 1:
Tracks #1-6: Le Jazz Groupe de Paris
“ESSAIS” Arranged and conducted by André Hodeir
Jean Liesse, Buzz Gardner, trumpet; Nat Peck, trombone; Jean Aldegon, alto sax; Bobby Jaspar, tenor sax; Armand Migiani, baritone sax; Sadi, vibes; Pierre Michelot, bass; Jacques David, drums.
Recorded in Paris, December 13, 1954
Roger Guerin, Jean Liesse, trumpets; Nat Peck, trombone; Jean Aldegon, alto sax; Georges Grenu, tenor sax; Armand Migiani, baritone sax; Sadi, vibes; Pierre Michelot, bass; Christian Garros, drums.
Recorded in Paris, June 26, 1956
Jean Aldegon and Nat Peck out on #12 & 14.
Recorded in Paris, June 27, 1956
Same as #7-10, but Sadi out.
Recorded in Paris, July 2, 1956
Roger Guérin, trumpet; Nat Peck, trombone; Georges Grenu, tenor sax; Martial Solal, piano; Pierre Michelot, bass; Kenny Clarke, drums.
Recorded in Paris, autumn 1960
Personnel on CD 2:
Tracks #1-7: Le Jazz Groupe de Paris
“JAZZ CANTATA” Arranged and conducted by André Hodeir
Roger Guérin, Christian Bellest, trumpet; André Paquinet, trombone; Pierre Gossez, alto sax; Georges Grenu, tenor sax; Armand Migiani, baritone sax; Jean-Pierre Drouet, vibes, perc.; Pierre Michelot, bass; Christian Garros, drums; Christiane Legrand, vocals.
Recorded in Paris, Autumn 1960
“LE PALAIS IDEAL” Arranged and conducted by André Hodeir
Roger Guérin, Christian Bellest, trumpet; Nat Peck, trombone; Hubert Rostaing, alto sax; Georges Grenu, tenor sax; Armand Migiani, baritone sax; Jean-Pierre Drouet, vibes, percussion; Pierre Michelot, bass; Christian Garros, drums.
Recorded in Paris, Autumn 1960
Raymond Guiot, flute (overdubbed four times); Martial Solal, piano; Pierre Michelot, bass; Kenny Clarke, drums.
Recorded in Paris, Autumn 1960
Roger Guerin, trumpet; Emmanuel Soudieux, bass; Richie Frost, drums.
Recorded in Paris, 1952
Tracks #17-26: American Jazzmen Play André Hodeir's “ESSAIS”
André Hodeir and His Orchestra: Donald Byrd, Idrees Sulieman, trumpet; Frank Rehak, trombone; Hal McKusick, alto sax, bass-clarinet; Bobby Jaspar, tenor sax, flute; Jay Cameron, baritone sax, clarinet, bass-clarinet; Eddie Costa, pianos, vibes; George Duvivier, bass; Bobby Donaldson, drums; Annie Ross, vocal on #26.
Recorded in Hackensack, New Jersey, March 4 & 5, 1957
Liner notes: André Hodeir, Gunther Schuller & Jordi Pujol
Produced for CD release by Jordi Pujol
Mono / Stereo · 24-Bit Digitally Remastered
"Here is some of the most intelligently conceived and entrancing music Hodeir committed to disc, graced by an extensive and informative essay from Fresh Sound's Jordi Pujol - who rightly observes that Hodeir (1921-2011) was “one of the world's most literate composers and working critics in the world of jazz”. The French polymath's Jazz: Its Evolution And Essence and Toward Jazz remain some of the most cogent and stimulating analyses of the music.
Hodeir studied with Messiaen and played violin with Django Reinhardt and Kenny Clarke. Such a distinctive background gave him a special aptitude for counterpoint and timbre and a particular sensitivity to the creative tension between compositional logic and improvisational élan (small wonder that Monk's Criss Cross and Lewis's Milano feature here). There is so much to enjoy in these cuts, from the brief, swinging serialism of the 1954 Paradoxe and the multi-tracked layering of Flautando (with Martial Solal, Pierre Michelot and Kenny Clarke accompanying flautist Guiot) to the mellow magic of, e.g., Bobby Jaspar, Hal McCusick, Frank Rehak and George Duvivier on the American Jazzmen Play sides.
While the tenor of Davis's Birth Of The Cool is at times present (Cross Criss) the originality of Hodeir is everywhere evident. Sample the seven-movement Cantata and relish both the soaring verve of vocalist Christiane Legrand and the chromatic subtlety of the broadly spread yet incisive mix of punchy swing and atemporal abstraction. Hear Jazz Et Jazz to see how Hodeir could blend jazz timbres and the pitch-bending world of musique concrete. Or turn to the blues-shot The Alphabet and enjoy the walking bass groove and increasingly potent voicings which underpin and enfold Annie Ross's sparely cast yet sensuous wordless vocal. All fabulous stuff - and just a small fraction of the delights on offer throughout this surpassing release."
Jazz Journal (February, 2017)
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