Billy Bang's final studio album, a quintet with Dick Griffin (trombone), Andrew Bemkey (piano), Hilliard Greene (bass) and Newman Taylor-Baker (drums) performing works from Bang, Barry Altschul, Don Cherry, Ornette Coleman, Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins.
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Catalog ID: TUM 34
Squidco Product Code: 17822
Recorded by Nikopetri Paakunainen at Studio MI, Finnish Broadcasting Company, in Helsinki on February 2nd and 3rd, 2011.
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1. Da Bang 8:20
2. Guinea 12:31
3. Daydreams 13:57
4. Law Years 7:53
5. All Blues 10:11
6. St. Thomas 5:14
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"Da Bang! was recorded in February 2011, just two months before the master violinist Billy Bang (1947-2011) succumbed to cancer. In this final session, the Billy Bang Group featured one extended composition by Bang, "Daydreams," as well as compositions by some of Bang«s favorite musicians, including Barry Altschul, Don Cherry, Ornette Coleman, Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins.
For Da Bang!, the Billy Bang Group featured legendary trombonist Dick Griffin as well as Bang«s regular accompanists in his final period, pianist Andrew Bemkey, bassist Hilliard Greene and drummer Newman Taylor-Baker.
During his career, Billy Bang recorded almost 30 albums as a leader, another dozen or so with various co-operative groups and many more as a sideman. In addition to being a beautiful recording in its own right and a stellar addition to his discography, Da Bang! serves as an ample reminder of why Billy Bang was considered a true master of his chosen instrument and one of the undisputed leaders of his generation of improvising musicians."-Tum Records
• Show Bio for Billy Bang
"Billy Bang (September 20, 1947 Đ April 11, 2011), born William Vincent Walker, was an American free jazz violinist and composer.
Bang's family moved to New York City's Bronx neighborhood while he was still an infant, and as a child he attended a special school for musicians in nearby Harlem. At that school, students were assigned instruments based on their physical size. Bang was fairly small, so he received a violin instead of either of his first choices, the saxophone or the drums. It was around this time that he acquired the nickname of "Billy Bang", derived from a popular cartoon character.
Bang studied the violin until he earned a hardship scholarship to the Stockbridge School in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, at which point he abandoned the instrument because the school did not have a music program. He had difficulty adjusting to life at the school, where he encountered racism and developed confusion about his identity, which he later blamed for his onset of schizophrenia. Bang felt that he had little in common with the largely privileged children at the school, who included Jackie Robinson, Jr. (son of baseball star Jackie Robinson) and Arlo Guthrie, and he struggled to reconcile the disparity between the wealth of the school and the poverty of his home in New York. He left the school after two years and attended a school in the Bronx. He did not graduate, decided not to return to school after receiving his draft papers, and at the age of 18, he was drafted into the United States Army.
Bang spent six months in basic training and another two weeks learning jungle warfare, arriving in Vietnam just in time for the Tet Offensive. Starting out as an infantryman, he did one tour of combat duty, rising to the rank of sergeant before he mustered out.
After Bang returned from the war, his life lacked direction. The job he had held before the army had been filled in his absence. He pursued and then abandoned a law degree, before becoming politically active and falling in with an underground group of revolutionaries. The group recognized Bang's knowledge of weapons from his time in the Army, and they used him to procure firearms for the group during trips to Maryland and Virginia, buying from pawnshops and other small operators who did not conduct extensive background checks. During one of these trips, Bang spotted three violins hanging at the back of a pawnshop, and he impulsively purchased one.
He later joined Sun Ra's band. In 1977, Bang co-founded the String Trio of New York (with guitarist James Emery and double bassist John Lindberg). Billy Bang explored his experience in Vietnam in two albums: Vietnam: The Aftermath (2001) and Vietnam: Reflections (2005), recorded with a band which included several other veterans of that war. The latter album also features two Vietnamese musicians based in the United States (voice and ˆn tranh zither).
Bang died on April 11, 2011. According to an associate, Bang had suffered from lung cancer. He had been scheduled to perform on the opening day of the Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival on June 10, 2011. He is buried at Woodlawn Cemetery, Bronx, New York."-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billy_Bang)
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