Jazz legend Henry Grimes returned to the music world in 2003 after 35 years away, will perform with world renowned drummer Rashied Ali.
Master jazz musician (acoustic bass, violin) HENRY GRIMES will perform with world renowned RASHIED ALI on Saturday, February 7, 2009 at 8 pm at Rutgers-Camden Walter K. Gordon Theater located at 3rd & Pearl Street, Camden, NJ at the base of the Ben Franklin Bridge. Free Parking in Lot 14 on 3rd Street. Tickets only $20. General Admission. Call 856-225-2700 or www.rutgerscamdenarts.org.
HENRY GRIMES has played more than 3OO concerts in 23 countries (including many festivals) since May of 'O3, when he made his astonishing return to the music world after 35 years away. He was born and raised in Philadelphia and attended the Mastbaum School and Juilliard.
In the '5O's and '6O's, he came up in the music playing and touring with Willis Gator Tail" Jackson, Bullmoose" Jackson, Little" Willie John, and a number of other great R&B / soul musicians of that era; but drawn to jazz, he went on to play, tour, and record with many great jazz musicians of that era, including Albert Ayler, Don Cherry, Benny Goodman, Coleman Hawkins, Roy Haynes, Lee Konitz, Steve Lacy, Charles Mingus, Gerry Mulligan, Sunny Murray, Sonny Rollins, Roswell Rudd, Pharoah Sanders, Archie Shepp, Cecil Taylor, McCoy Tyner, and Rev. Frank Wright.
Sadly, a trip to the West Coast to work with Al Jarreau and Jon Hendricks went awry, leaving Henry in Los Angeles at the end of the '6O's with a broken bass he couldn't pay to repair, so he sold it for a small sum and faded away from the music world.
Many years passed with nothing heard from him, as he lived in his tiny rented room in an S.R.O. hotel in downtown Los Angeles, working as a manual laborer, custodian, and maintenance man, and writing many volumes of handwritten poetry. He was discovered there by a Georgia social worker and fan in 2OO2 and was given a bass by William Parker, and after only a few weeks of ferocious woodshedding, Henry emerged from his room to begin playing concerts around Los Angeles and shortly afterwards made a triumphant return to New York City in May, 'O3 to play in the Vision Festival.
Since then, often working as a leader, he has played, toured, and / or recorded with many of today's music heroes, such as Rashied Ali, Marshall Allen, Fred Anderson, Marilyn Crispell, Ted Curson, Andrew Cyrille, Bill Dixon, Dave Douglas, Andrew Lamb, Joe Lovano, David Murray, William Parker, Marc Ribot, and Cecil Taylor.
Henry has also given a number of workshops and master classes on major campuses, released several new recordings, made his professional debut on a second instrument, the violin, at the age of 7O, has now published the first volume of his poetry, Signs Along the Road," and has been creating illustrations to accompany his new recordings and publications.
He has received many honors in recent years, including four Meet the Composer grants and a grant from the Acadia Foundation. He can be heard on more than 8O recordings on various labels, including Atlantic, Ayler Records, Blue Note, Columbia, ESP-Disk, Impulse!, JazzNewYork Productions, Pi Recordings, Porter Records, Prestige, Riverside, and Verve. Henry Grimes now lives and teaches in New York City.
RASHIED ALI, a Philadelphia native, was an early progenitor and remains a leading exponent of multi-directional rhythms and polytonal percussion. As a youngster, he was a student of Philly Joe Jones and admirer of Art Blakey. Rashied began his percussion career in the U.S. Army and started working with R&B and rock groups when he returned from the Service, then began working with Philadelphia jazz musicians such as Lee Morgan, Don Patterson, and Jimmy Smith. Moving on to New York City, Rashied became a key figure of the jazz avant-garde in the 196O’s, backing up the excursions of such musical visionaries as Albert Ayler, Paul Bley, Don Cherry, Bill Dixon, Pharoah Sanders, and Archie Shepp.
It was during this period that Rashied Ali made his first major recording, Archie Shepp’s “On This Night,” with a group that also included Henry Grimes. Mr. Ali’s renowned musical relationship with John Coltrane began in 1965 when he started sitting in with Mr. Coltrane’s group at the Half Note and other clubs around Manhattan.
Late that year, John Coltrane decided to use a two-drummer format for a gig at the Village Gate, the percussionist he chose to complement Elvin Jones was Rashied Ali, and thus began a musical odyssey whose reverberations are still felt in the music today:
Trane probing the outer harmonic limits and changing the melodic language of jazz, while Rashied Ali turned the drum kit into a multi- rhythmic, polytonal propellant, helping fuel Coltrane's ecstatic musical flights. The rolling, emotion-piercing music generated by the Coltrane/ Ali association is still being discussed, analyzed, reviewed, and enjoyed in awe and wonder all over the world.
Following Mr. Coltrane's death in 1967, Rashied continued playing music with pianist Alice Coltrane. In the 197O’s, he formed his own record label, Survival, and opened his own now-legendary performance venue, Ali's Alley. In the '8O’s and '9Os, he performed with Charles Gayle, David Murray, William Parker, Jaco Pastorius, Carlos Santana, James Blood Ulmer, and many others. Today, Rashied Ali continues to perform regularly with his own quintet, as well as with Reggie Workman, Sonny Fortune, and lately, Henry Grimes. For further information about Rashied Ali: www.myspace.com/rashiedali.
Rutgers-Camden Center for the Arts (RCCA) is South New Jersey’s premier performing arts, visual arts and arts education institution and has been designated a Major Arts Organization of New Jersey" by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State.
RCCA’s mission is to provide performances, exhibitions, education programs, and community projects, that inspire a full appreciation and enjoyment of the arts, create meaningful opportunities to participate in the arts, advance the central role of the arts in preK-12 education, and increase awareness of the arts as essential to cultural, economic, and community vitality.
Located on the Camden waterfront, the RCCA venues include the Walter K. Gordon Theater, Stedman Gallery, and Black Box Studio.