perspective have brought a vibrant sense of individuality to the music.
Trilek Clubs: making a splash
McLaughlin Trio. In both settings. his immense rhythmic vitality and unique
Ills kit Is a unique combination . . . irom snare
drum and tom-tom through to a gong Immersed In a bucket
the ﬁrst time, with Daniel Goyone on
may have heard him tour with his brother Niels for the Scottish Jazz Network a couple of years back) on bass. Their music is a genuinely cosmopolitan mixture, reﬂecting the
The percussionist now brings his own recently-formed tn'o to this country for
keyboards and Chris Minh Doky (you
leader's characteristic fusion of Indian and Western styles.
Both players are featured on his third album, Crazy Saints. but each of the tracks they play on has other guests as well (Pat Metheny, Louis Sclavis, Emst Reijseger), making it a little difﬁcult to gauge just how they will sound. The album also features a couple of cuts with Joe Zawinul (Trilok has also toured in a duo with the keyboard maestro), and there is a lot of the colouration and harmonic texture associated with Weather Report in the music.
Gurtu grew up in a musical family - his mother, singer Shoba Gurtu, is featured on a couple of his albums) — in Bombay, and began playing in the strict discipline of Indian classical forms, but acquired a liking for Western music while still at an early stage of his development. The broad base of Gurtu's cunent style was laid as a teenager in the late 605 and early 70s,
when he was exposed to a range of
music which included not only Elvin Jones and Tony Williams. but also James Brown, King Crimson, Jimi Hendrix and Yes.
‘It was the age of the hippies and all of that, and there was a lot happening in India, and I got into that whole rock and pop scene, with Hendrix and Cream and so on. I had to really search around to hear these records, but I grabbed anything I could get, and then somebody played me Coltrane, and from there I started hearing Miles and Cannonball and Monk, and I loved that music, and I felt I really wanted to learn about it as a way to express myself.‘
Frustrated by the conservative Indian jazz scene, Gurtu moved to Europe in I973, and settled in Hamburg, where he began to play in all kinds of contexts, including a productive collaboration with another much-travelled musical eclectic, trumpeter Don Cherry (‘Don taught me a lot about the African side of the music, and about Omette Coleman‘). As word spread, he began to get more and more calls for sessions, tours, and teaching, and his reputation has grown steadily ever since.
He joined Oregon in I984 after the
tragic death of Collin Walcott, and g McLaughlin's Trio in I988, and has
undoubtedly beneﬁted from the
exposure gained in such high-proﬁle
l bands, but has repaid that favour with a i highly positive musical contribution.
. His kit is a unique combination of
Indian and Western instruments, from
snare drum and tom-toms through to all
manner of ‘little instruments’, and a gong immersed in a bucket of water, a trick he picked up while playing a composition by John Cage.
‘The kit evolved over a long period,
? and as I got a little money, I would add
things to it. The snare drum helped me a lot, because it allowed me to express myself as a drummer, as well as a percussionist. The water thing came from when I was playing with a percussion group in Germany, which used to play a lot of really out contemporary music. This particular thing came from a Cage piece, and I liked it, so I kept it.‘
The Trilok Gurtu Group play at The Queen 3' Hall. Edinburgh on Fri 12. The Lemon Tree. Aberdeen on Sat 13. and the RSAMD, Glasgow on Sun [4.
Raising the roof
its they have become more successiul over Europe, much oi the Crowded lleuse ianbase has begun to resemble the target audience oi the Bob llarris show. And last year, ‘0’ readers voted the low Icelanders best live band in the magazine’s Ileaders’ Poll.
But don’t be tooled. Although more mature listeners were drawn to the band by melody, wit and angst which harkened back to the likes oi The Beatles and The Byrds, Crowded llouse have never had the kind oi audience that REM or 02, say, have enjoyed.
All that could be set to change. The new album, ‘Together Alone’, recorded in a low lealand beach house, is experimental and eclectic. It’s more personal and low-key than previous work, yet could make them much bigger.
‘We came straight oil the road with this album,’ drawls bassist Illck Seymour. ‘We are all so determined to get it right with this album. We all got
journey. But there are some fairly standard Crowded llouse singles.’ Much oi the record’s success is due to producer Youth, the ex-Kllling Joke man whose client range irom Bananarama to James. ‘lle’s quite dliierent on the normal role oi production,’ says Seymour. ‘On the one
so pissed oii between the disparity oi hand, he’s totally into money and whatwearellve andwhatweareon career movesandontheotherhe’son record.’ some sort oi hippy trip.’
Anyone who has seen the House llve Which is exactly what the twelve- wlll know already that their month Crowded llouse tour will be conservative Image is nonsense. In like. ‘I’ve rented out my house tor the concert, they have sung songs nude, next year. The social liie is great but perionned irom the mixing desk and your iamlly llie is hell. It tdtes it even launch Into impromptu covers toll.’
(‘The lady In lied’, ‘llivers Oi Babylon’ Still, it’s not as bad as promotion. ‘A and ‘You Sexy Thing’ to name but recent show we did, we went on three). between a Japanese drum ensemble
‘Our records used to be a bit and a man who hypnotised chickens. precious,’ admit Seymour. ‘But with And they take it so seriously . . .’ this record it’s hard to listen to it song (Johny Hollie) by song. I hear the end oi a song and Crowded llouse play Glasgow Iloyal the beginning oi another. It’s more oi a Concert Hall on Tue 9 and Wed 10. Noble virtues While many music competitions may is open to young singers who have a otter either a substantial cash prize or close association with Scotland by an enviable addition to a CV, the birth, residence or training. ‘lt’s very Scottish Opera John Ioble Bursary Important that there is a competition Competition combines both with a like this In Scotland,’ continues major incentive tor the mainly student McCormack, ‘becaese it does competitors: the opportunity to land encourage singers to keep going, and principal or understudy roles with the the bursary money can be a great help company. ‘There is a major perk In ior young singers who are just about that Scottish Opera have heard you,’ to iinish studying in Scotland and says Elizabeth hicConnack, a iormer move onto post-graduate things In winner. ‘You’ve done, basically, a: london.’ audition tor the company. In my case, The semi-iinals and ilnals will tdte it has been very beneiicial because, place In the Theatre lleyal, Glasgow, a since the competition, I’ve worked splendid venue for one oi Britain’s with Scottish Opera almost every year. most respected singing competitions. It’s great irom the singer’s point oi ‘lt’s a wonderful place to sing in,’ view, and also irom the company’s agrees McCormack. ‘The acoustics point oi view in that they can hear the are really lovely and, tor a lot oi home-grown talent.’ student, it’s their iirst time
McCormack is currently appearing as periorming In a theatre. When I took Varvara in Scottish Opera’s Katya part, we sang the ilnal with the Kabanova, and made her debut with orchestra, which was really exciting; the company (her ﬁrst proiessional but even with piano accompaniment, role, while still a student) in a it’s still a great occasion.’ (Alan Christmas production oi Iolanthe. Monk")
Other winners have Included the The semi-ilnals oi the John Ioble Internationally acclaimed baritone Bursary Competition take place at Cordon Sandison, Clare Shearer and 3|)! III F" 5 '0' 8' "I M W. last year’s winner Lisa Milne, who will 3M". W "I! "I!!! ﬂ “I 8.. appear in a new production oi L’Ellslr time on Sun 7. Ticket are free. Ii mm |. “M1994, m available irom the Box Oitice an M1 Bursary, which brlngswlthltanaward 332m- ei£2lllOtoputtowardstralning cost,
The List 5—I8 November I993 31