"COXHILL ’85." SLAMCD 2114
Soprano and sopranino saxophones.
Lol Coxhill was a unique entertainer, and this is a unique performance from a musician whose music truly knew no stylistic boundaries. There was no such thing as a typical Coxhill gig. Anything could happen at any time, and frequently did. Although primarily regarded as a free improvisor, Lol never really fitted in with the improvised music scene. If indeed he drew from this particular musical well, he also drew from many other sources and would introduce these into an improvisation at any point that he felt was appropriate, moving in an instant from fierce abstraction to a remembered melody or song.
The music here was recorded informally, in June 1985, at Gibbs Jazz Club, Cardiff where Lol was booked for two nights. Throughout the concert Lol was perched upon a stool, looking relaxed and ready to play. If some of the audience were not quite sure what to expect, Lol won them over at first with his ability as natural raconteur and then with his music. In the programme Lol also plays some delightful solos on sopranino saxophone, something he did far too infrequently.
It’s a real privilege for SLAM to release this recording of a classic Lol Coxhill solo gig. Lol has been a regular artist on SLAM dating back to the second SLAM CD issued in 1990. We are indebted to Nick Lea for recording the concert, preserving it for 36 years and offering it to SLAM, also to Ulrike Coxhill-Scholz for her help and cooperation.
Gibbs was a very active Cardiff jazz club back in the 1980’s – I remember playing there myself once – must have been around the same time as Lol’s concert. A good atmosphere and keen audience, Lol was clearly feeling very comfortable there. This CD has preserved his informal dialogue during the concert – I always felt this was an important element of any Lol performance.
COXHILL 85 is the final CD scheduled for release on the SLAM label, founded in 1989.
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