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As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Zakir Hussain, Dave Holland & Chris Potter @ Edinburgh Assembly Hall - July 22

(Review by Steve T).
One of my favourite musicians in the world, one of a diminishing number of jazz musicians who can unequivocally claim the status of living legend, and one of the hottest sax players on the planet.
Tabla, bass and sax: a dream set up for me, and I've just missed them at least three times in the past couple of years.
The first time I saw Zakir Hussain, he and John McLaughlin put Shakti back together, to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the partition of India and Pakistan. He's one of the few musicians who can hold his own and, on that showing, trump the guitar colossus. Two decades on, his technique is undiminished, but he's gained in stature and charisma.
This was the third time I'd seen Chris Potter: with Pat Metheny’s Unity Band/Group and his own quartet, so I was well aware that he was perfectly capable of standing with giants.
I'd never seen Dave Holland, though I've heard countless albums he's played on, including a number of major classics. He's the finest exponent I've ever heard to hold down the traditional bass function while simultaneously stepping way beyond that role.

A few seriously restricted viewing seats short of a sell-out, the anticipation was palpable and nobody left disappointed.
They shared the announcements: pieces from each of them, some written for each other, one by Hussain for McLaughlin, Hussain and Holland, the latter two both referred to as maestro during the set.
But titles of individual stretches of music and who wrote them wasn't the point; this was three master musicians, hanging together brilliantly and displaying dazzling levels of inventiveness and virtuosity.
I don't think anybody could have been disappointed when the lights came on, but the three returned to the stage for what I'm convinced was a genuinely unscheduled and unplanned encore; the only time I can remember a band returning and playing another after the lights had come on.
Gig of the year, any year. 
Steve T.

2 comments :

Hugh said...

Great review, Steve. Sounds like a gig not to be missed! The only one of the musicians I've had the privilege to see live is Dave Holland. Your description is spot-on. Cool (but with a small "c") and understated, but with great presence. I remember his bass as not being quite the traditional instrument, but having a slightly "cut-down" appearance.

Russell said...

I concur with Hugh's comments. One of Steve T's better reviews...that's a compliment, Steve!

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