Dorothy Ashby – Concierto De Aranjuez (1983)

FrontCover1.jpgDorothy Jeanne Thompson (August 6, 1932 – April 13, 1986) better known as Dorothy Ashby, was an American jazz harpist and composer. Hailed as one of the most “unjustly under loved jazz greats of the 1950’s” and the “most accomplished modern jazz harpist,”[6] Ashby established the harp as an improvising jazz instrument, beyond earlier use as a novelty or background orchestral instrument, proving the harp could play bebop as adeptly as the instruments commonly associated with jazz, such as the saxophone or piano.

Ashby had to overcome many obstacles during the pursuit of her career. As a black woman musician in a male dominated industry, she was at a disadvantage. In a 1983 interview with W. Royal Stokes for his book Living the Jazz Life, she remarked of her career, “It’s been maybe a triple burden in that not a lot of women are becoming known as jazz players. There is also the connection with black women. The audiences I was trying to reach were not interested in the harp, period—classical or otherwise—and they were certainly not interested in seeing a black woman playing the harp.” Ashby successfully navigated these disadvantages, and subsequently aided in the expansion of who was listening to harp music and what the harp was deemed capable of producing as an instrument.

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Ashby’s albums were of the jazz genre, but often moved into R&B, world music, and other styles, especially her 1970 album The Rubaiyat of Dorothy Ashby, where she demonstrates her talents on another instrument, the Japanese koto, successfully integrating it into jazz.

Dorothy Thompson grew up around music in Detroit, where her father, guitarist Wiley Thompson, often brought home fellow jazz musicians. Even as a young girl, she would provide support and background to their music by playing the piano. She attended Cass Technical High School, where fellow students included such future musical talents and jazz greats as Donald Byrd, Gerald Wilson, and Kenny Burrell. While in high school she played a number of instruments (including the saxophone and string bass) before coming upon the harp.

DorothyAshby4.jpgShe attended Wayne State University in Detroit, where she studied piano and music education. After she graduated, she began playing the piano in the jazz scene in Detroit, though by 1952 she had made the harp her main instrument.[15] At first her fellow jazz musicians were resistant to the idea of adding the harp, which they perceived as an instrument of classical music and somewhat ethereal in sound in jazz performances. So Ashby overcame their initial resistance and built support for the harp as a jazz instrument by organizing free shows and playing at dances and weddings with her trio.[15] She recorded with Jimmy Cobb, Ed Thigpen, Richard Davis, Frank Wess and others in the late 1950s and early 1960s. During the 1960s, she also had her own radio show in Detroit.

Ashby’s trio, including her husband, John Ashby, on drums, regularly toured the country, recording albums for several record labels. She played with Louis Armstrong and Woody Herman, among others. In 1962, Ashby won Down Beat magazine’s critics’ and readers’ awards for best jazz performers. Extending her range of interests and talents, she also worked with her husband in a theater company, the Ashby Players, which her husband founded in Detroit, and for which Dorothy often wrote the scores. In the 1960s Dorothy Ashby, together with her husband, formed a theatrical group to produce plays that would be relevant to the African-American community of Detroit. This production group went by several names depending on the theater production.

They created a series of theatrical musical plays that Dorothy and John Ashby produced together as this theatrical company, the Ashby Players of Detroit.[17] In the case of most of the plays, John Ashby wrote the scripts and Dorothy Ashby wrote the scores.[16] Dorothy Ashby also played harp and piano on the soundtracks to all of her plays. She DorothyAshby5starred in the production of the play “3–6–9” herself. Most of the music that she wrote for these plays is available only on a handful of the reel to reel tapes that Dorothy Ashby recorded herself. Only a couple of the many songs she created for her plays later appeared on LPs that she released. Later in her career, she would make recordings and perform at concerts primarily to raise money for the Ashby Players theatrical productions.

The theatrical production group “The Ashby Players” not only produced black theater in Detroit and Canada but provided early theatrical and acting opportunities for black actors. Ernie Hudson (of Ghostbusters 1 actor, credited as Earnest L. Hudson) was a featured actor in the Artists Productions version of the play 3–6–9. In the late 1960s, the Ashbys gave up touring and settled in California, where Dorothy broke into the studio recording system as a harpist through the help of the soul singer Bill Withers, who recommended her to Stevie Wonder. As a result, she was called upon for a number of studio sessions playing for more pop-oriented acts.

Ashby died from cancer on April 13, 1986, in Santa Monica, California. Her recordings have proven influential in various genres. The High Llamas recorded a song entitled “Dorothy Ashby” on their 2007 album Can Cladders. Hip-hop artists have sampled her work often, including Jurassic 5, on their album Feedback, as well as Andre Nickatina on his song “Jungle”. Bonobo included the track “Essence of Sapphire” on his mix album Late Night Tales.

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Concierto de Aranjuez is a studio album by jazz harpist Dorothy Ashby released via the Philips Records label in 1984. The record is her final album as a leader. (by wikipedia)

The harp is such a phenomenally beautiful instrument and I don’t understand why it isn’t much more prominent in jazz, or music in general. Dorothy Ashby plays with grace and feeling. Listening to this album feels like being swept away into some mystical fairy tale land. It’s soothing but also kind of melancholy in a way that I don’t think can really be described properly with words. (ClipsMcGrips)

And this is a very intimate, quit album and this fits to my sad mood today …

A great album … if you would like to relax …

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Personnel:
Dorothy Ashby (harp)

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Tracklist:
01. Concierto de Aranjuez (Rodrigo) 9.26
02. Gypsy Airs (de Sarasate) 3.50
03. Green Sleeves (Traditional) 4.31
04. Gershwin Melody (Gershwin) 7.45
04.1. Summer Time
04.2. Someone To Watch Over Me
04.3. Porgy
05. Autumn Leaves (Kosma) 5.15
06. Dear Old Stockholm (Traditional) 4.15
07. Yesterday (Lennon/McCartney) 2.54

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Dorothy Ashby (August 6, 1932 – April 13, 1986)

Roger McGuinn – 67th Birthday Concert (2009)

RogerMcGuinnFrontCover1Roger McGuinn (James Roger McGuinn, born James Joseph McGuinn III; July 13, 1942), is an American musician. He is best known for being the frontman of the Byrds. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for his work with the Byrds.

After the break-up of the Byrds, McGuinn released several solo albums throughout the 1970s. In 1973 he collaborated with Bob Dylan on songs for the sound track of the Sam Peckinpah movie Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid including “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door”. He toured with Bob Dylan in 1975 and 1976 as part of Dylan’s Rolling Thunder Revue, cancelling a planned tour of his own in order to participate. In late 1975, he played guitar on the track titled “Ride the Water” on Bo Diddley’s The 20th Anniversary of Rock ‘n’ Roll all-star album.

In 1977, he released an LP titled Thunderbyrd, which was also the name of his contemporaneous band. Other members included future John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers and Fleetwood Mac guitarist Rick Vito, future Poco bassist Charlie Harrison and drummer Greg Thomas.

In 1978, McGuinn joined fellow ex-Byrds Gene Clark and Chris Hillman to form McGuinn, Clark and Hillman. The trio recorded an album with Capitol Records in 1979. They performed on many TV rock shows, including repeated performances on The Midnight Special, where they played both new material and Byrds hits. McGuinn’s “Don’t You Write Her Off” reached #33 in April 1979. While some believe that the slick production and disco rhythms didn’t flatter the group, it sold well enough to generate a follow up. McGuinn, Clark and Hillman’s second release was to have been a full group effort entitled “City”, but a combination of Clark’s unreliability and drug problems resulted in the billing change on their next LP City to “Roger McGuinn and Chris Hillman, featuring Gene Clark.”

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Since 1981, McGuinn has regularly toured (primarily playing clubs and small theaters) as a solo singer-guitarist.

In 1987 Roger McGuinn was the opening act for Dylan and Tom Petty. In 1991, he released his comeback solo album, Back from Rio, to successful acclaim. It included the hit single “King of the Hill,” written together with, and featuring, Petty.

On July 11, 2000, McGuinn testified before in a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on downloading music from the Internet that artists do not always receive the royalties that (non-Internet based) record companies state in contracts, and that to date, the Byrds had not received any royalties for their greatest successes, “Mr. Tambourine Man” and “Turn, Turn, Turn” – they only received advances, which were split five ways and were just “a few thousand dollars” per band member. He also stated that he was receiving 50 percent royalties from MP3.com.

RogerMcGuinnHe was also part of an author/musician band, Rock Bottom Remainders, a group of published writers doubling as musicians to raise proceeds for literacy charities. In July 2013, McGuinn co-authored an interactive ebook, Hard Listening, with the rest of the group

Roger McGuinn has used the Internet to continue the folk music tradition since November 1995 by recording a different folk song each month on his Folk Den site. The songs are made available from his Web site, and a selection (with guest vocalists) was released on CD as Treasures from the Folk Den, which was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2002 for Best Traditional Folk Album. In November 2005, McGuinn released a four-CD box set containing one hundred of his favorite songs from the Folk Den.[9]
Personal life

When he originally started with the Byrds, he used the name Jim, which he thought to be too plain. McGuinn became involved in the Subud spiritual association in 1965 and began to practice the latihan, an exercise in quieting the mind. He changed his name in 1967[10] after Subud’s founder Bapak told him it would better “vibrate with the universe.” Bapak sent Jim the letter “R” and asked him to send back ten names starting with that letter. Owing to a fascination with airplanes, gadgets and science fiction, he sent names like “Rocket”, “Retro”, “Ramjet”, and “Roger”, the latter a term used in signalling protocol over two-way radios, military and civil aviation. Roger was the only “real” name in the bunch and Bapak chose it. While using the name Roger professionally from that time on, McGuinn only officially changed his middle name from Joseph to Roger.

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McGuinn married Susan Bedrick in 1963; however, the marriage was subsequently annulled. From December 1966 to November 1971, he was married to Dolores DeLeon. A fellow adherent of Subud, DeLeon changed her name to Ianthe in 1967 before reverting to her original name after the dissolution of their marriage. With DeLeon, McGuinn fathered two sons, including filmmaker Patrick McGuinn. Immediately following their divorce, McGuinn was married for a third time to Linda Gilbert in November 1971; this marriage also ended in divorce in June 1975.

McGuinn left Subud in 1977, the same year that he met his fourth and current wife and business manager, Camilla; they married in April 1978. Since that time, the McGuinns have practiced evangelical Christianity.

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A registered member of the Republican Party, McGuinn donated $2,000 to the Ben Carson presidential campaign in 2015 and refused to endorse Donald Trump. He also opposed Florida Amendment 1 (2016) (an initiative pertaining to the solar energy industry, of which McGuinn is a longtime advocate) and endorsed Florida Amendment 2 (2016) (a medical marijuana legalization initiative). (by wikipedia)

And here´s a damn good solo concert from 2009,which was broadcasted by “Deutschland – Radio/Kultur)

… Oh yes, this man has to tell many stories and hast to sing many songs … because he was a very important part of the US Folk-Rock history.

Such a beautiful sound, such important lyrics ! An album in a very pensive mood.

Recorded live at the Pfandhaus, Köln, Germany, July 13, 2009
excellen broadcast quality

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Personnel:
RogerMcGuinn (vocals, guitar, banjo)
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Camilla McGuinn (vocals on 26.)

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Tracklist:
01. Introduction (in German) 1.20
02. My Back Pages (Dylan) 2.15
03.  Mr. Spaceman (McGuinn) 2.25
04. Pretty Boy Floyd (Guthrie) 3.09
05. You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere (Dylan) 2.50
06. Well Well Well (Camp/Gibson) 1.59
07. Ballad Of Easy Rider (McGuinn/Dylan) 2.19
08. Wasn’t Born To Follow (Goffin/King) 1.48
09. You Showed Me (McGuinn/Clark) 2.19
10. All I Really Want To Do (Dylan) 2.15
11. Chestnut Mare (McGuinn/Levy) 6.18
12. American Girl (Petty) 2.27
13. King Of The Hill (McGuin/Petty) 3.10
14. The Trees Are All Gone (McGuinn/C.McGuinn) 3.40
15. Interview (with German voice over) 2.48
16. 5D (Fifth Dimension) (McGuinn) 2.56
17. Lover Of The Bayou (McGuinn/Levy) 2.25
18. Just A Season (McGuinn/Levy) 3.45
19. The Bells Of Rhymney (Seeger) 3.50
20. Turn! Turn! Turn! (Seeger) 3.55
19. He Was A Friend Of Mine (Traditional) 2.28
20. So You Want To Be A Rock ‘n’ Roll Star (Hillman/McGuinn) 2.44
21. Eight Miles High (Clark/McGuinn/Crosby) 5.12
22. Mr. Tambourine Man (Dylan) 3.15
23. I’ll Feel A Whole Lot Better (Clark) 1.47
24. Chimes Of Freedom (Dylan) 3.06
25. Happy Birthday (crowd) 1.15
26. May The Road Rise To Meet You (Traditional) 2.46
26. Don’t You Write Her Off (Hippard/McGuinn) 2.49

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I dedicate this entry to a good girlfriend of my wife,
she died today and she was only 57 years old:

Summertime – the sun would shine
We’d lay across the field
Sheltered in the shadow of a tree
We’d write our poems to take along
To sing out on the road
And you would always sing this song to me

May the road rise to meet you
May the wind be at your back
May the sun shine warm upon your land
May the rain fall soft upon your face until we meet again
May God hold you in the palm of His hand

Autumn leaves would change our trees
To colors on the ground
Swirling patterns beautiful to see
I’d lay my head down on your lap
I wouldn’t make a sound
nd you would always sing this song to me

May the road rise to meet you
May the wind be at your back
May the sun shine warm upon your land
May the rain fall soft upon your face until we meet again
May God hold you in the palm of His hand

Through the winter days our tree
Would shiver in the wind
Waiting for the warning touch of
Spring I’d hold you in the firelight-
We’d stare into the flame
And this is what you always used to sing

May the road rise to meet you
May the wind be at your back
May the sun shine warm upon your land
May the rain fall soft upon your face until we meet again
May God hold you in the palm of His hand