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Thread: The best from ECM label

  1. #1
    Lieutenant, Associate Concertmaster Progger58's Avatar
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    Arrow The best from ECM label

    I tend to like the typical music from this German label a lot: avant-garde jazz/fusion at the best, with great instrumentists and high quality recordings.

    Some of my favorite artists from this label:

    - TERJE RYPDAL
    - KETIL BJÖRNSTAD
    - DAVID TORN
    - JAN GARBAREK
    - STEVE TIBBETTS
    - ARILD ANDERSEN
    - NILS PETTER MOLVAER
    - JOHN SURMAN
    - BUGGE WESSELTOFT
    - EGBERTO GISMONTI

    Which other great ECM artists can we add to this list?

    Kind regards,
    Demetrio.

  2. #2
    Captain of Water Music Art Rock's Avatar
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    I would have put in Garbarek, Rypdal and Surman, so nothing to add here - except, well, why is Keith Jarrett not in yours?

    But you are right, great label, I don't think I ever got a CD from ECM that was not satisfactory.

  3. #3
    Lieutenant, Associate Concertmaster Progger58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Art Rock View Post
    I would have put in Garbarek, Rypdal and Surman, so nothing to add here - except, well, why is Keith Jarrett not in yours?
    My fault, sorry. Keith Jarrett, of course!!

  4. #4
    Ensign, Principal Deeru Piotr's Avatar
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    some coming to my head right now

    John Abercrombie/Dave Holland/Jack Dejohnette Gateway 1976
    Chick Corea Return to forever
    ARC Chick Corea/Dave Holland/Barry Altschuul

    and of course a lot of Jarrett recordings

    but then I should say that there is a number of ECM records that I found boring and disappointing

  5. #5
    Rear Admiral Appassionata (Ret.) intet_at_tabe's Avatar
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    Some people have Christianity for a religion, some have Buddhism or Islam.

    My religion is the ECM Records (ECM = european contemporary music), created by the german classical educated musician and producer Manfred Eicher.

    End of story!!
    Last edited by intet_at_tabe; Jan-01-2008 at 15:55.

  6. #6
    Rear Admiral Appassionata (Ret.) intet_at_tabe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deeru Piotr View Post
    some coming to my head right now

    John Abercrombie/Dave Holland/Jack Dejohnette Gateway 1976
    Chick Corea Return to forever
    ARC Chick Corea/Dave Holland/Barry Altschuul

    and of course a lot of Jarrett recordings

    but then I should say that there is a number of ECM records that I found boring and disappointing
    Hi Deeru Piotr.

    I read your post, and specificly the last line. Would you please elaborate on which musicians and their albums you do not like and find boring?

    I am a regular visitor at the www.ecm.com

    I began buying from music shops and borrowing ECM records from my local library in the old vinyl days, some 35 years ago (while we were young(-er)). The ones you have mentioned Abercrombie/Holland/Dejohnette equals the band GATEWAY, but then they each of them have recorded with the ECM in each their own name, like Keith Jarrett and hundreds of other later distinguished musicians from all over the world.

    My very first album bought with the ECM was by KENNY WHEELER, a canadian born, now living in England trumpet and flugelhorn player. The album titled "Gnu High" on which he only plays the flugelhorn, with Jarrett/Holland/DeJohnette as co-musicians.

    First I borrowed it because of the mysterious red cover, which I found beautiful, which has become another plus with the ECM - the covers often with strange but beautiful photos or paintings.

    I soon became addicted to the special ECM sound, even in the old vinyl-record days. The inventor and producer behind ECM Records the german Manfred Eicher had a plan, being a classical educated musician himself. He felt the sound on most records then in the late 1960´s to be terrible on any label. Often the bass and the sound of cymbals from drums sounded like had it been played on a tinpot. Manfred´s idea was to create a recording studio, where each instrument in the band became equally important and equally clear in it´s own sound to the listenor.

    You know the excentric american Keith Jarrett (pianist, soprano saxophonist, percussionist, composer, bandleader etc.etc.) has been with the ECM Records since his first studio recorded solo-piano album "Facing You" released in 1972. According to Manfred Eicher he has more than 150 hours of solo-piano-concerts on stock mostly from Japan, where Jarrett seems to feel better working than anywhere else, never released so far. I have more than 60 albums with Keith Jarrett in different connections and bands and different record labels before he joined the ECM. Though mostly with Gary Peacock and Jack Dejohnette. I still can´t pick only one of these more than 60 albums, and definitely say - This is the best of all at the ECM. Remember the "Køln" solo-piano-concert from 1975, the one ECM production that has sold most albums world wide and second in line is the Pat Metheny Group "Travels" a double album from different live concerts around the USA from 1983. I love both of these albums, but I can´t decide which of them are the best.

    I don´t think it is possible to pick one album out of mayby a 1000 albums by various artists produced by Manfred Eicher on the ECM Records, recorded either at Rainbow Studio, Oslo, Norway or at The Power Station, N.Y.C., USA - sound-engineer Jan Erik Kongshaug for both these studios, or at the Ton-Studio-Bauer, Munich, Germany - sound engineer Martin Wieland - and then decide which album is the best - musically or the recording itself. I also believe your own mood on the day is important.

    But I do know that the breakthough for the ECM Records and Manfred Eicher as the producer came in the beginning of the 1970´s world wide, and much later in time with digital recording, and mostly every other record label around the planet copied his ideas for jazz production and have done ever since.

    But please let me hear from you.

    Best regards,
    intet-at-tabe
    Last edited by intet_at_tabe; Jan-03-2008 at 16:25.

  7. #7
    Ensign, Principal Deeru Piotr's Avatar
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    Hi intet-at-abe

    I'll try to be more specific but I always found hard to talk about what one likes or dislikes in music.
    The record you mention Gnu High by Wheeler is by the way one of the records I didn't like. I bought it immediatly when I saw the players on it, and then I listened to it three or four times the first days but invariably it failed to keep my attention after say ten minutes, the playing is great, but it seems just too lyrical to me, I give this record a listen each now and then, waiting to see if I get into it but always happens the same thing. It happened to me with some other records one by Eberhard Weber (sorry, can't remember the title), some recordings by Terje Rypdal (which I find too repetitive, sorry)
    I don't know I guess it is just a question of taste, that's not my cup of tea (those particular records)
    On the other hand David Holland Conference of the birds (what a wonder!) or some other records by the ECM are magical, yes

  8. #8
    Rear Admiral Appassionata (Ret.) intet_at_tabe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deeru Piotr View Post
    Hi intet-at-abe

    I'll try to be more specific but I always found hard to talk about what one likes or dislikes in music.
    The record you mention Gnu High by Wheeler is by the way one of the records I didn't like. I bought it immediatly when I saw the players on it, and then I listened to it three or four times the first days but invariably it failed to keep my attention after say ten minutes, the playing is great, but it seems just too lyrical to me, I give this record a listen each now and then, waiting to see if I get into it but always happens the same thing. It happened to me with some other records one by Eberhard Weber (sorry, can't remember the title), some recordings by Terje Rypdal (which I find too repetitive, sorry)
    I don't know I guess it is just a question of taste, that's not my cup of tea (those particular records)
    On the other hand David Holland Conference of the birds (what a wonder!) or some other records by the ECM are magical, yes
    Hi Deeru Piotr

    Thank you for your reply. That is the good thing about music, we can´t/or should not always agree, bacause TASTE varies. Like opinions. I believe it was the editor of the male magasin Hustler Larry Flynt, who once said: Opinions are like assholes, everyone has one. I believe his remarks then were pointed at Jerry Farwell (USA) from the Moral Majority organisation.

    Some like it hot some don´t. Some like a stake, some don´t (can´t figure out why though regarding the stake)

    So you don´t have to appologise, I am flattered you took the time to answer, thinking of all that snow in Maine. Also I am a bit way off about the ordinary with the ECM Records. Dave Holland is one of my addmost favourites too. I have the one you mentioned in order, seems very difficult to get, it´s been almost 6 months since I ordered it. I have all his albums from "Jumping In" 1984 to "Overtime" (Big band) 2006.

    The trio Gateway feat. Abercrombie/Holland/DeJohnette made all together 4 albums as the trio in question. I believe you mentioned "In The Moment" from 1996 (album 4 of 4). First album Gateway 1, 1975. Gateway 2, 1978. Gateway 3 "Homecoming" 1995.

    Have you listened to "Selected recordings", ECM Records 2004. Dave Holland does an incredible cello solo on track 3 "Inception".

    How is your generel opinion on Chick Corea? Did you enjoy the Return To Forever albums? One of my all time fav albums is "The Mad Hatter" from the late 1970´s feat. Farrell/Gadd/Gomez and a brass band? Not to mention "Three Quartets" with the late Michael Brecker (tenor saxophone) replacing Joe Farrell.

    Best regerds,
    intet-at-tabe

  9. #9
    Rear Admiral Appassionata (Ret.) intet_at_tabe's Avatar
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    Deeru Piotr

    About record labels in general. None of them are basicly in work to serve us. It is a billion dollar buisness - like the Columbia Jazz/CBS. CBS who works in every other department of the intertaining and news industry.

    When Miles Davis (birth name Miles Dewey Davis, III) passed away 09/28/1991 his record contract with Columbia Jazz meant that the company released more than 10 albums in the next 18 months, often only 3-4 tunes on one album, total playing time 19 minutes or so, but for the same prize as a normal CD in Denmark, which is around 139,00 danish kroner, equals 23 dollars.

    This was the side effect of the legend Miles Davis in jazz passing away. It´s called greed. Simply use his death to make money or as we say in Denmark, press the lemon dry.

    Generally, I am not much for albums where different songs from different albums are, like "The Best Of" or "Collection". It´s too much sellout to my taste. If perhaps the muscians have a block, no new material. It happened to Carlos Santana some 12 years ago, perhaps more. Like a writer can have a block. But at the same time the record labels releasing such albums, get in touch with new customers, people who would not buy 5 albums with Miles Davis or another big seller. But to have his best well known songs, they would probably buy such one. You know people like yours truely, who is not so much, to say the least, into pipe organs or classical music, but has some classical music anyway.

    Many years ago at 17 or so I met a girl, and she was infatuated about Beethoven´s 5th Symphony. So what does a teenage gentleman do. He buys her the lot 9 Symphonies, conductor Herbert Von Karajan and the Berlin Symphony Orchestra. However I had got it all wrong. She would not take this majestic gift "men want all the same", she said. This only to get to talk to her. I guess I should have bought flowers. I kept Beethoven´s 9 symphonies.

    Back to the record labels. I guess that´s why the record labels genrerally try to fight the internet, because the access to music today are for everyone with a PC. On the other hand distributors of music on the internet are clever, you can download any song you want and pay for it.

    Best regards,
    intet-at-tabe
    Last edited by intet_at_tabe; Jan-11-2008 at 08:00.

  10. #10
    Rear Admiral Appassionata (Ret.) intet_at_tabe's Avatar
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    Deeru Piotr.

    A minor correction on my former post. It was not "conductor Herbert Von Karajan and the Berlin Symphony Orchestra". It should have read "conductor Herbert Von Karajan and the Berlin Philamonic.

    But then you know, like the title from an old american movie with Jack Lemon and Tony Curtis, dressed up as women: No one is perfect.

    Best regards and hopefully a very sunny wekend for you,
    intet-at-tabe

  11. #11
    Commander, Assistant Conductor Fretless's Avatar
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    I own a few ECM discs, my recent favorite being Arild Anderson Group--Electra. But he's already on your list. One that I've been enjoying since last summer is Miroslav Vitous--Universal Syncopations.

    The only ECM disc that I have that I don't really care for is Mnemosyne--with Garbarek and the Hilliard Ensemble. There are a few selections on the double disc that are fairly heavenly, but overall I find the saxophone improvs to be a little too "new-agey". I'm still glad I have it, and still listen to it on occasion, and I love the Bergman photos.

  12. #12
    Rear Admiral Appassionata (Ret.) intet_at_tabe's Avatar
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    Hi Fretless

    "Mnemosyne"--with Garbarek and the Hilliard Ensemble". I am with you on this one. Not a favourite ECM disc of mine either. It represents the new line with the ECM. The Hilliard Ensemble and Jan Garbarek, some of the music we now title as "cross over", which can be interesting.

    Arild Andersen (double bass), another norwegian top notch jazz musician like JG on the other hand - one of my favourite scandinavian double bass players and composers. The other one being the swede Palle Danielsson from Keith Jarrett´s Scandinavian Quartet back in the 1970´s. Arild Andersen has been with the ECM since the dawn of time, or at least since the dawn of the ECM Records.

    The album in question "Electra", ECM records 2005. The title represents a greek figure from the mythology. The instrumentation on the AA album quite different from the other albums I have sitting on my music shelves.

    Can I help you in any way Fretless?. Not being an expert on anything whatsoever, but having lost, nada - rather giving my heart away to the ECM production and Manfred Eicher a lifetime ago. Did you listen to some of Arild Andersen´s earlier work?

    Best regards,
    intet-at-tabe
    Last edited by intet_at_tabe; Jan-15-2008 at 09:29.

  13. #13
    Rear Admiral Appassionata (Ret.) intet_at_tabe's Avatar
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    Hi Fretless

    "Mnemosyne"--with Garbarek and the Hilliard Ensemble". I am with you on this one. Not a favourite ECM disc of mine either. It represents the new line with the ECM. The Hilliard Ensemble and Jan Garbarek, some of the music we now title as "cross over", which can be interesting.

    Arild Andersen (double bass), another norwegian top notch jazz musician like JG on the other hand - one of my favourite scandinavian double bass players and composers. The other one being the swede Palle Danielsson from Keith Jarrett´s Scandinavian Quartet back in the 1970´s. Arild Andersen has been with the ECM since the dawn of time, or at least since the dawn of the ECM Records.

    The album in question "Electra", ECM records 2005. The title represents a greek figure from the mythology. The instrumentation on the AA album quite different from the other albums I have sitting on my music shelves.

    Can I help you in any way Fretless?. Not being an expert on anything whatsoever, but having lost, nada - rather giving my heart away to the ECM production and Manfred Eicher a lifetime ago. Did you listen to some of Arild Andersen´s earlier work?

    Best regards,
    intet-at-tabe
    Last edited by intet_at_tabe; Jan-15-2008 at 09:28.

  14. #14
    Rear Admiral Appassionata (Ret.) intet_at_tabe's Avatar
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    Fretless, you see how happy I felt with your entry on Arild Andersen www.ecm.com , I simply had to write the same post twice, so at your convienience Fretless? Now how did that happen?

    Fretless let me throw in a couple of Arild Andersen´s albums from the ECM stock for free, being thrilled by your entry:

    "Masqualero - Aero" and "Masqualero - Re-Enter" almost the same instrumentation, except for the guitar, feat. Niels Petter Molvaer (trumpet), Tore Brunborg (tenor and soprano saxophone) Rune Alnaes (guitar) and Jon Chruistensen (drums).
    "Lifelines" feat. Kenny Wheeler (trumpet, flugelhorn), Steve Dobrogozs (piano) and Paul Motian (drums). Awesome album.
    "A Molde Concert" LIVE feat. Bill Frisell (guitar), John Taylor (piano) and Alphonzo Mouzon (former Weather Report drummer).
    "If You Look Far Enough" feat. Ralph Towner (acoustic 6-12 string guitars), Audun Kleive (snare drum) and Nana Vasconcelos (percussion).
    "Hyperborean" feat. Bendik Hofseth (tenor saxophone), Tore Brunborg (tenor and soprano saxophone), Kenneth Knudsen (keyboards), Paolo Vinaccia (drums, percussion) and The Cikada String Quartet.

    There ar two older albums with Arild Andersen from a group called Vangelis, quite new to me. The title is "Through The Dark", Lyra Records 1996 feat. Markus Stockhausen (trumpet, flugelhorn), David Lynch (tenor and soprano saxophone), Savina Yannatou (voice), Yorgus Kontrafouris (piano), Spyros Panagiotopoulos (drums, percussion) and Nicos Touliatos (percussion) and the other album:

    "Kristin Lavransdatter" FXCD Records 1995 feat. Tore Brunborg (saxophones), Reider Skår (piano, keyboards) and Paolo Vinaccia (drums, percussion).

    Finally the trio Dahl/Andersen/Heral on the two albums "The Sign" Stunt Records 2002 and "Moon Water" Stunt Records 2004 feat. Carsten Dahl (piano, marimba, vibes), Arild Andersen (bass) and Patrice Heral (drums, percussion, voice).

    Should keep you busy and thrilled for a couple of hours, however please keep coming back!!

    Best regards,
    intet-at-tabe
    Last edited by intet_at_tabe; Jan-15-2008 at 09:25.

  15. #15
    Commander, Assistant Conductor Fretless's Avatar
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    Thanks intet-at-tabe--

    Wow, that's a lot of stuff! I will put those on my list of recordings to seek out.
    The Electra disc is the only Arild Anderson I've heard, and I bought it as a "blind" purchase--once in a while I go to the store and pick a disc that just looks intriguing by an artist I've never heard. Electra didn't do much for me the first couple of listens while driving, and I put it away for a few months. Then I transferred it to my headphones and listened without distractions and it really became fascinating and very cool.

    I do have some other ECM releases that I haven't been able to listen to yet--Scelsi's Natura Renovatur, Kurtag's string music, and Nik Bartsch's Ronin: Stoa.
    I, um, tend to buy more than I have had time to listen over the last year.

    And even though it's not ECM, Patrice Heral's cool vocal/percussion work on "Electra" led me to the album "Triangulation", which is also on my waiting list--I'm actually stuck about which to listen to first. I like to absorb and take my time with each album and let them reveal their secrets over time.

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