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Riley, Howard

Constant Change 1976-2016 [5 CDs]

Riley, Howard : Constant Change 1976-2016 [5 CDs] (NoBusiness)

Pianist Howard Riley in a 5 CD box of absolutely impressive solo piano never before released on CD, including festival recordings in Paris & Debrecen, a 1987 cassette-only release, and three new albums from 2014, 15 & 16 titled as "Longer Story" "One", "Two" & "Three"; esssential!

Price: $49.95


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product information:

Includes 12 page color booklet with liner notes and photos.

Label: NoBusiness
Catalog ID: NBCD 91-95
Squidco Product Code: 23028

Format: 5 CDs
Condition: New
Released: 2016
Country: Lithuania
Packaging: Box Set
Tracks 1-1 to 1-6 recorded live in Paris, France, on March 7th, 1976.

Tracks 1-7 to 1-9 recorded live during Debrecen Jazz Days, Hungary, September 12th, 1986.

Tracks 2-1 to 2-3 recorded on 29th June 1983, tracks 2-4 to 2-6 on 28th June 28th, 1985.

Tracks 2-7 to 2-13 on 21st July 1987 at Porcupine Studios, London.

Track 3-1 recorded at Porcupine Studios, on July 3rd, 2014, in London.

Track 4-1 recorded at Porcupine Studios, on April 29th, 2015, in London.

Track 5-1 recorded at Porcupine Studios, on April 6th, 2016 in London


Howard Riley-piano

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Artist Biographies:
"John Howard Riley (born 16 February 1943) is an English jazz pianist and composer. Riley was born in Huddersfield. He began learning the piano at the age of six, and began playing jazz as early as the age of 13. He studied at the University of Wales (1961-66), Indiana University in America under Dave Baker (1966-67), and then at York University (1967-70). Alongside his studies he played jazz professionally, with Evan Parker (1966) and then with his own trio (1967-76), with Barry Guy on bass and Alan Jackson, Jon Hiseman, and Tony Oxley for periods on drums. Additionally he worked with John McLaughlin (1968), the London Jazz Composers Orchestra (1970-1980s), and with Oxley's ensemble (1972-81). He and Guy worked in a trio with Phil Wachsmann from 1976 well into the 1980s, and played solo piano throughout North America and Europe. From 1978 to 1981 he played in a quartet with Guy, Trevor Watts, and John Stevens; in the early 1980s he did duo work with Keith Tippett, with Jaki Byard, and with Elton Dean. From 1985 he worked in a trio setting with Jeff Clyne and Tony Levin. Riley has taught at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and currently teaches at Goldsmiths, University of London, where he has taught continuously since the 1970s."-Wikipedia (

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track listing:


1. Ice 9:24

2. Boeotian 11:43

3. Seven Imprints Of One 9:05

4. Inside 2:42

5. Gypsum 3:11

6. Project 7:21

7. The Furthest Point 7:17

8. Zones 19:43

9. Deflection 7:51


1. Fingerprints 6:10

2. T.S.M. (With Thanks) 3:51

3. Two-Hander 6:08

4. Eleven In Three 4:55

5. In Repose 5:29

6. Circling 2:25

7. Imprint Eleven 2:20

8. Blue On Blue 5:46

9. Inner Minor 4:20

10. Inside Out 4:45

11. Imprint Seventeen 3:49

12. Dusty Douglas 2:42

13. Serene 3:44


1. Mutability One (LongerStory) 1:01:21


1. Mutability Two (Longer Story) 59:13


1. Mutability Three (Longer Story) 1:03:22
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Paris / Debrecen are both Festival performances recorded at a period when I was concentrating on developing my own material / compositions, and before I had evolved my 'with or without repertoire' approach to solo playing, which explained in the 'sleeve-note' to Live With Repertoire on NoBusiness Records CD 58 (briefly: some performances are with repertoire, some are without and some utilise both).

Fingerprints album was released in 1987 on MC cassette only (Wondrous WM 0102) and contains 13 short pieces of 'Fingerprints'. It awakened my interest in short forms and let to the 6-CD box The Complete Short Stories 1998-2010 on NoBusiness Records CDs 21-26.

The most recent recordings are third, fourth and fifth CDs in this box set, entitled Longer Story One, Longer Story Two and Longer Story Three from 2014, 2015 and 2016 respectively. There is one piece or 'single story' on each of these CDs with duration of approximately one hour. It was perhaps inevitable that the 79 'Short Stories' comprising the first box set would be followed by these 'Longer Stories'. The main difference from my point of view as a performer / composer is that the former needed one idea per piece that was capable of being developed, whereas the longer pieces require a multiplicity of ideas and material that are capable of being interrelated either compositionally or spontaneously.

That's the only information needed, along with a willingness to listen uninterruptedly for one hour (I know it requires effort!). Perhaps I should add that I deliberately varied my approach in each of the three 'Longer Story' pieces. The first has a pre-conceived form. The second starts with pre-conceived form, but ends with a long Coda, which emphasises whatever the performer wishes to emphasise. The third one is totally improvised in one take."-Howard Riley, 2016

Includes 12 page color booklet with liner notes and photos.
Related Categories of Interest:

Box Sets
Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
Piano & Keyboards
Solo Artist Recordings
London & UK Improv & Related Scenes
Staff Picks & Recommended Items

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