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African Cookbook Import

3 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

Price: £19.95
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£19.95 Only 1 left in stock. Dispatched from and sold by EliteDigital UK.

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Product details

  • Audio CD (23 Mar. 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Koch Jazz
  • ASIN: B00000I9EP
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,748,506 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
  • Sample this album Artist (Sample)
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Product Description

Featuring the band and material that played the group's send-off at the Monterey Jazz Festival in 1966 (resulting in the long-overdue issue of the Monterey '66 CD in 1993), this Randy Weston band held solid ground in the space between a small ensemble and a big band. African Cookbook gets at least some of its name--and its spiritedness--from tenor saxophonist Booker Ervin, who takes the album's best solos in his Texas-tenor, blues-soaked style. The band plays at a slow simmer for much of the set, recorded in 1964 but unreleased until 1972, gliding into Weston's open architecture and effusive, Pan-African melodies. There's generous percussion here, much of it coming from the rarely heard Lennie McBrowne (who, by the way, stirs it up brilliantly on Ervin's Booker and Brass), with the frequent addition of Big Black and Sir Harold Murray on small and handheld percussion. Unlike hosts of his contemporaries, Weston survived this period and created awesome works--not the least of which is 1998's Khepera--but it's always great to hear material, like this, that barely saw light even when it was recorded. --Andrew Bartlett

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a record of two very distinctive halves. "Berkshire Blues" and "Portrait Vivian," are pretty standard model numbers, the latter being the more atmospheric.
The congos come out for "Niger Mambo." We have lift off. This is where Weston goes into overdrive. Snappy, with a devilish trumpet section in the middle; this track has all you could want and more.
The title track is a stonewall classic, steady build up, that percussion that just grates on you, bringing you hypnotically into the track - pure genius.
"Congelese Children," is a slightly quick yet enjoyable ditty.
Worth buying for the title track on its own
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x903a472c) out of 5 stars 5 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x902993fc) out of 5 stars synthesis of two styles coming together 14 Sept. 2007
Format: Audio CD
Randy Weston, has basically had two different phases of his musical career: his earlier work, which is more hard bop, bluesy kind of jazz, and his later work which is caharcterized by his emphasis on African beats, rhythms and melodies. The music recorded on this CD came at a time (1964) when he was basically transitioning from one style to the other one, and as a result, there are elements of both here but I would say there is more emphasis on the former than the latter. His forthcoming output would be a lot more deeply steeped in African music. And on this CD, there is great sax playing by Booker Ervin, who was a mainstay in Weston's band at that time (The much later album Khepara, features another great sax player, Pharoah Sanders, and it is interesting to note the contrast in their styles).
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x90988150) out of 5 stars Tasty and timeless! 3 Mar. 2011
By twistyhair - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I'm embarrassed to admit that I did not realize this album was over 40 years old, but I guess that's a testimony to Randy Weston. I couldn't stop listening to this CD once it arrived. There's so much good music here and it all sounds fresh to my ears. The compositions are unique in the way they draw on a variety of traditions.

Mr. Weston is a generous performer too - allowing the other musicians on this album to shine. This is a good addition to your collection and a great starting place for an introduction to Randy Weston's music.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By David Keymer - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
RW, comp, p; Booker Ervin, ten sx; Ray Copeland, tpt; Vishnu Bill Wood, b; Big Black, perc, voc; Lenny McBrowne, Sir Harold Murray, perc.

Cookbook is an early album by Weston from 1964. It was retitled some time in the 70s -which is confusing because there's another Weston album out that is also entitled African Cookbook. The basic format is piano-horns quintet -Weston with trumpeter Ray Copeland and tenor sax player Booker Ervin plus bass and drums on the first four cuts, the same group with two African drummers added on cuts 5-7. It's vintage Weston --starts with a jazz waltz, a patented specialty of Weston's (think "Little Niles"), continues with a plaintive ballad that showcases Ervin, and so on. Percussinist Big Black takes a vocal on "Congolese Children" that adds little to the song but doesn't detract from the song, which, like all of the pieces, all by Weston, is good. Weston writes good music, his orchestrations are simple but effective, and he's as good an accompanist as he is a soloist -and he's a fine soloist. Weston has always been one of the more interesting composer-performers to come out of the fifties, part Ellington, part Monk, but all his own man in how he melds the pieces. He's also the real thing when it comes to African musical influences in his music. In short, this is not an essential album, nor is it even without its shortfalls (Black's vocal) but the overall quality of this offering is high and Weston's music is, as always, infectiously listenable.
HASH(0x907f324c) out of 5 stars This is a real treasure by a consummate jazz musician ... 21 July 2014
By Robin G. Miller - Published on
Format: Audio CD
This is a real treasure by a consummate jazz musician. I think it's out of print, so if you have the opportunity to get a copy. don't hesitate. The one I got was printed in Japan.
HASH(0x90606114) out of 5 stars Five Stars 30 July 2015
By Npoet9 - Published on
Verified Purchase
One of the great jazz recordings ever.
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