A last-minute contribution from a Rifftides reader who identifies himself only as John.
Worked: Don Pullen and the Chief Cliff Singers.
(Sacred Common Ground, a collaboration between the pianist’s avant garde African Brazilian Connection and a Native American vocal group. DR)
Didn’t (at least for me): Louis Armstrong and Leon Thomas.
(Louis Armstrong and Friends, a 1960s album including Thomas, a sort of free jazz yodeler; Ornette Coleman, Miles Davis, Tony Bennett and others in a small choir. The musical direction, sort of, is by Oliver Nelson, who on other occasions exercised control. The phrase “herding cats” has rarely been more appropriate. It’s a bit of a mess, but Armstrong’s warmth and charisma come through the melee. DR)
Thanks for fleshing out my notes. A quibble: Louis Armstrong and Friends is actually from 1969 or ’70, not 1960. Armstrong doesn’t blow on it, just sings. “Give Peace a Chance” is an unexpected cover. His remake of “What a Wonderful World” on it is great.
Remembering the duet with Thomas again — it’s on a Thomas song, “The Creator Has a Master Plan.” Armstrong makes fun of the song, slyly. In a way, it does work. I read that Thomas’s vocal was overdubbed later. “Works as bizarre kitsch” might be how I feel about it.
Anyway — thanks. Interesting topic.
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