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Archie Shepp – Attica Blues

Archie Shepp
Attica Blues
Style: Jazz
Label: Blue Note
Catalog Number: AS-9222
Released: 1972, 70's
Stream:

Archie Shepp’s Attica Blues is a multi-faceted jazz masterpiece. Musically, it represents a departure in Shepp’s music from the free jazz leanings of his previous output to cohesively span jazz, funk, soul, r&b, and gospel with a large ensemble of musicians and vocalists. Politically, the record functions as a powerful piece of social commentary, a cry for justice, and an ode to fallen heroes.

The title track is a funk bomb in the style of Sly Stone and references the Attica Prison Uprising of 1971 which began as prisoners demanded an end to the horrible conditions they were forced to live in and took control of the prison, holding 42 staff members hostage. Following days of fruitless negotiations, the governor of New York ordered law enforcement to storm the prison, resulting in the death of 33 inmates and ten civilian employees and correctional officers.

Other tributes include “Invocation To Mr. Parker,” an homage to Charlie Parker, “Blues for Brother George Jackson,” an activist and author who was also killed attempting escape from terrible prison conditions, and “Goodbye Sweet Pops,” dedicated to Louie Armstrong.

– Cole Kinnear

Recommended: A1 Attica Blues, B1 Blues for Brother George Jackson, B5 Quiet Dawn

 

Tags: Funk / Political / Soul-jazz
Tracklist:

A1 Attica Blues
A2 Invocation: Attica Blues
A3 Steam, Part 1
A4 Invocation To Mr. Parker
A5 Steam, Part 2
B1 Blues For Brother George Jackson
B2 Invocation: Ballad For A Child
B3 Ballad For A Child
B4 Good Bye Sweet Pops
B5 Quiet Dawn

Credits:

Alto Saxophone – Clarence White, Marion Brown
Backing Vocals – Albertine Robinson, Joshie Armstead
Baritone Saxophone – James Ware
Bass – Jimmy Garrison
Bass [Fender] – Jerry Jemmott, Roland Wilson
Cello – Calo Scott, Ronald Lipscomb
Conductor – Romulus Franceschini
Cornet – Clifford Thornton
Design – Clyde Gilliam
Drums – Beaver Harris, Billy Higgins
Electric Piano – Dave Burrell, Walter Davis Jr.
Engineer – Tony May
Engineer [Assisted] – Eddie Sepanski
Euphonium – Hakim Jami
Flugelhorn – Cal Massey
Flute – Marion Brown
Flute [Bamboo] – Marion Brown
Guitar – Cornell Dupree
Narrator – Bartholomew Gray, William Kunstler
Percussion – Juma Sutan, Marion Brown, Nene DeFense, Ollie Anderson Piano –Walter Davis Jr.
Soprano Saxophone – Archie Shepp
Tenor Saxophone – Archie Shepp, Billy Robinson, Roland Alexander
Trombone – Charles Greenlee, Charles Stephens, Kiane Zawadi
Trumpet – Charles McGhee, Michael Ridley, Roy Burrowes
Violin – John Blake, Leroy Jenkins, Shankar
Vocals – Henry Hull, Joe Lee Wilson, Waheeda Massey
Producer – Ed Michel

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