Ahmed Abdul-Malik, Spellbound
Of Sudanese heritage, the bassist Ahmed Abdul-Malik (1927-1993) was born Jonathan Timms in Brooklyn. After working with Art Blakey and Thelonious Monk, among others, Abdul-Malik studied music of other cultures. He was among the first to incorporate Middle Eastern and Indian influences into jazz. Except for a straight-ahead blues, this 1965 album consists of themes from movies: “Spellbound,” “Never on Sunday,” “Body and Soul” and “Delilah.” Sudanese oud player Hamza el Din enhances the melding of musical dialects. As mentioned in passing
here a few weeks ago, Abdul-Malik and saxophonist Lucky Thompson had in common an appreciation for Paul Neves, a pianist whose work on Spellbound
makes it all the more regrettable that he died little known in the 1980s. Neves, cornetist/violinist Ray Nance
and saxophonist Seldon Powell are quite at home in the exotic mix. It’s good to have this available again.
This story appears courtesy of Rifftides by Doug Ramsey.
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