George Gruntz – Monster Sticksland Meeting Two (Live) (1974/2017) [Qobuz FLAC 24bit/88,2kHz]

George Gruntz – Monster Sticksland Meeting Two (Live) (1974/2017) 
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/88,2 kHz | Time – 53:17 minutes | 1 GB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz | Front Cover | © MPS

In 1974, some seven years after the first Basel ‘Sticksland’ meeting, a 36-man percussion extravaganza took place that once again featured a top-flight jazz ensemble together with the Basel drum and fife corps of Alfred Sacher and Georges Mathys. Now add a Scottish drum and fife corps with the former and reigning Scottish drumming champions Jimmy Catherwood and Joe Noble, kilts and all, as well as some 300 fifers hidden in the audience of a theater packed to overflowing. The results: a Carnival Happening!

Once again Gruntz masterfully ‘mediates’ the affair with his arrangements and conducting; on the jazz side, drummer Daniel Humair returns, joined by the British percussion free spirit Tony Oxley, master saxophonists Charlie Mariano and John Tchicai, and bassist JF Jenny-Clark. Intercourse II finds the jazz sextet in collaboration with the Basel tambour drummers, with Mariano and Tchicai supplying the fiery dialogue on sopranos, while Drum Fanfare highlights the masterful precision of Scottish drumming. Scottish bagpipes and Basel fifes march together on Whisky on the Rocks, as the jazz sextet steps along with the Scottish drummers on Tribute to Jimmy. The Scottish and Basel drummers battle it out on Düse Strasphey, and on Gruntz’s haunting High, Higher, Highlands the sextet blends with the Scottish pipes. The Basel fifes march in concert with the jazz rhythm section on Fudiweggli, whereas Antipodes is a masterclass in drum styles, with Catherwood (Scott.), Humair (jazz), Sacher(Scott.), Oxley(Jazz), and Noble (Basel tambour) the inspiring instructors. The traditional General-Arabi tops off the concert with everyone, including hundreds of fifers among the audience, joining in on the grand finale. A brilliant meld of diverse rhythmic traditions makes for a once-in-a-lifetime musical experience!

01 – Intercourse 2
02 – Drum Fanfare
03 – Whiskey on the Rocks
04 – Tribute to Jimmy
05 – Düse Strasphey
06 – High, Higher, Highlands
07 – S Fudiweggli
08 – Antipodes Commonplace
09 – General Arabi

Recorded live on March 31, 1974 by Tonstudio Bauer, Basler Stadtheater, Basel, Switzerland.
Digitally Remastered.

George Gruntz – Piano
Charlie Mariano – Soprano Saxophone
John Tchicai – Alto & Soprano Saxophone
Jean Francois Jenny-Clark – Bass
Daniel Humair – Drums
Tony Oxley – Electronic Percussion
The British Caledonian Airways Renfrew Pipe Band (Bob Stewart – conductor)
Basel Drum Corps (Alfred Sacher – conductor)
Basel Fife Corps (Georges Mathys – conductor)