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Frank Gratkowski & Hamid Drake

Artist: Frank Gratkowski
Frank Gratkowski / Hamid Drake - Live in New Orleans CD
Label: Valid Records
Regular Price: $14.95
On Sale For: $12.97 
Year: 2010
Format: CD


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Hamid Drake and Frank Gratkowski first performed together in Georg GrŠweÕs Quartet in 1996. Since then they have become fast friends and occasional collaborators, but not until their long weekend visit to New Orleans in March, 2009 did they have an opportunity to record together. New Orleans may have little standing in the ÒCreative MusicÓ world, other than as the home of free jazz icon Kidd Jordan, but over the last 15 years it has become a favored destination for all sorts of performers from this world. Not only are they as likely to find an audience here as anywhere else, they respond to the improvisatory and creative spirit of AmericaÕs most Afro-centric metropolis. Hamid and Frank have both been frequent visitors these past 10 years. [Hamid recorded a memorable New Orleans cd with Rob Wagner and Nobu Ozaki shortly after Hurricane Katrina (Valid VR-1013.)] Their joy in being in New Orleans hanging out together is captured by this spirited recording.

Drake has been a frequent collaborator in free improv drum/reed settings with Fred Anderson, Peter Brštzmann, and Mats Gustafson, and Gratkowski is an award winning solo performer. Their experience, and their formidable array of extended techniques, served them well in this expansive display. The concert was recorded at Piety Street Recording in front of 60 souls, but the musicians were in no way inhibited by the presence of the microphones; Hamid was so comfortable he held a 20 minute conversation with the audience in the middle of the second setÐ something that would probably not occur in New York or Berlin but didnÕt raise an eyebrow in more spacious New Orleans.
Frank Gratkowski (alto saxophone, clarinet, bass clarinet); Hamid Drake (drums, percussion)
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