The Jazz Show Episode November 9, 2009

Broadcast on 09-Nov-2009

9:00pm - 12:00am

Prince Lasha (William Lawsha) is the leader on this date and it features his close associate, alto saxophonist Sonny Simmons, one of the most distinctive voices on that horn. This album, done for the Contemporary label in November of 1962 and was their recording debut.It was called "The Cry!". Lasha (pronounced Lashay) and Simmons had struggled to get into Jazz clubs and perform their music and as it was a departure from the mainstream of the time it wasn't accepted with open ears. Lasha, from Fort Worth, grew up and went to school with Ornette Coleman and the music here reflects some of Coleman's influence. The compositions are all collaborations by Lasha and Simmons. Like Coleman's early recordings, no piano is used and the rhythm section here for most part is provided by two bassists and drums. Gary Peacock is one of the bassists and is very well known and the other is Mark Proctor. The creative drumming is by the unknown Gene Stone. Lasha, who plays flute throughout the session died last summer. He also played alto and baritone saxophones and a variety of clarinets, including the rare alto clarinet. Simmons is still with us and travels the world playing anywhere he can with a variety of players and is still a mighty voice on the alto saxophone. After this recording took place, Lasha and Simmons headed for New York and were embraced by John Coltrane and sat in with his band a lot. They recorded with Eric Dolphy and Herbie Hancock and did a great album with Coltrane's rhythm section of McCoy Tyner, Jimmy Garrison and Elvin Jones called "Illumination" on Impulse. They also embarked on separate careers but re-united off and on into the 1980's. "The Cry! was the debut for Prince Lasha and Sonny Simmons and it's a minor classic and very accessible and creative.

Track Listing:

Harlem Nocturne
Eddie Harris · Jazz Dance
Lee Morgan · Take Twelve
Philly J.J.
Philly Joe Jones · Big Band Sounds
Kinda Vague
Blue Mitchell · Blue's Moods
I'll Close My Eyes
While Were Young
Helen Merrill · The Dick Katz Sessions
A Lady Must Live.
Lonely Woman
The Blue Book
Booker Ervin · The Book Cooks
Git It!
R.B.'s Line.
Mike Rud · Live From Lotusland
Congo Call
Prince Lasha/ and · The Cry!
Green and Gold
Sonny Simmons
Ghost of the Past
Red's Mood
Lost Generation.