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Duets 1995

$ 8.90

Anthony Braxton / Joe Fonda

Anthony Braxton C melody & alto saxophones, contrabass & B flat clarinets / Joe Fonda double bass

Available on Amazon and iTunes


This is a reissue of the long disappeared CD on Konnex recorded by multi-instrumentalist Anthony Braxton with one of his most notable pupils, Joe Fonda. “Duets 1995” is a remarkable item of the duo series from this frontline figure of avant-garde jazz. If in that series we find two other Braxton partnerships with bassists, namely Mario Pavone and the late Peter Niklas Wilson, this is far from being more of the same. Even the conservative jazz fans will find here something to deal with. The renditions of two precious standards, Cole Porter’s “All of You” and Vernon Duke’s “Autumn in New York,” show the obvious admiration Anthony Braxton has for Paul Desmond. Both Fonda’s and Braxton’s compositions and improvisations are angular, complex, and tricky in terms of tonality and rhythm, but it would be unfair to say that this kind of approach to the jazz idiom is “cerebral”. This music has such a human dimension and feeling that any liberty taken appears to be natural in the continuum of African-American music. “Ancient to the future” it is, and with a fine level of communicability. As Joe Fonda once put it, “we live in a time of evolution”, and nothing can be taken out of the referred continuum: “For me there’s no separation between Bill Evans and Cecil Taylor or Sun Ra and Charlie Parker.” All of them communicated in different ways, but it always was understood. This Braxton / Fonda collection is also highly likeable.


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