STLJN Audio Archive: Oliver Nelson - Black, Brown and Beautiful


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This week's StLJN Audio Archive post comes once again via the Flying Dutchman blog, which has preserved most of the output of that once vibrant, now defunct jazz imprint of the 1960s and 1970s.

Saxophonist, arranger/composer and St. Louis native Oliver Nelson made a number of albums for Flying Dutchman, and today we feature Black, Brown and Beautiful, an ambitious effort composed and arranged entirely by Nelson and recorded in October, 1969 in Los Angeles. Here's what the website Dustygroove had to say about it:
“One of Oliver Nelson's hippest albums! The record is sort of an Ellington suite of tracks for the post-60s years—complete with some sound effects of rioting and urban strife at the beginning, and a mix of modern, modal, and compositional styles. Soloists include John Klemmer, Frank Strozier, and Nelson—and the overall tone of the album is pride in the face of struggle, with some killer compositions by Nelson that really rank with his best work ever. Titles include “Self Help Is Needed," “I Hope In Time A Change Will Come," “Requiem, Afterthoughts," “Lamb Of God," and “Martin Was A Man, A Real Man.""
Nelson's arrangements are performed by an orchestra along with featured performers including John Gross (tenor sax), John Klemmer (tenor sax), Frank Strozier (alto sax), Bobby Bryant (trumpet), Pearl Kaufman (piano), Roger Kellaway (piano), Chuck Domanico (bass), John Guerin (drums), Roy Haynes (drums) and Stanley Wilson (conductor).

To download a copy of Black, Brown and Beautiful, go here, clink on the word “LINK" at the bottom of the post, and follow the instructions.

The StLJN Audio Archive links only to recordings that are out-of-print or that never have been commercially available. The purpose of the Audio Archive is encourage discussion, appreciation and knowledge of St. Louis jazz artists, and we encourage you to support them (or their estates) by purchasing authorized recordings and merchandise or, whenever possible, attending live performances.

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This story appears courtesy of St. Louis Jazz Notes by Dean Minderman.
Copyright © 2020. All rights reserved.

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