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Phillips, Barre / Motoharu Yoshizawa: Oh My, Those Boys! [VINYL] (NoBusiness)

Two bass players--European free improv legend Barre Phillips and Japanese master Motoharu Yoshizawa--met at Cafe Amores in Yamaguchi, Japan in 1994, with Phillips on an amplified acoustic upright and Yoshizawa using an electric vertical 5-string bass of his own design, as the two weave and merge their unique sounds and approaches in a brilliant concert.

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product information:

300 LP copies limited edition

Label: NoBusiness
Catalog ID: NBLP 111
Squidco Product Code: 25340

Format: LP
Condition: New
Released: 2018
Country: Lithuania
Packaging: LP
Recorded live at Cafe Amores, in Hofu, Yamaguchi, Japan, on April 5th, 1994, by Takeo Suetomi.


Barre Phillips-bass

Motoharu Yoshizawa-bass

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Artist Biographies:

"Barre Phillips (born October 27, 1934 in San Francisco, California) is a jazz bassist. A professional musician since 1960, he migrated to New York City in 1962, then to Europe in 1967.[1] Since 1972 he has been based in southern France where in 2014 founded the European Improvisation Center

He studied briefly in 1959 with S. Charles Siani, Assistant Principal Bassist with the San Francisco Symphony During the 1960s he recorded with (among others) Eric Dolphy, Jimmy Giuffre, Archie Shepp, Peter Nero, Attila Zoller, Lee Konitz and Marion Brown.[1]

Phillips' 1968 recording of solo bass improvisations, issued as Journal Violone in the USA, Unaccompanied Barre in England, and Basse Barre in France, is generally credited as the first solo bass record. A 1971 record with Dave Holland, Music from Two Basses, was probably the first record of improvised double bass duets.[2]

In the 1970s he was a member of the well-regarded and influential group The Trio with saxophonist John Surman and drummer Stu Martin.[1] In the 1980s and 1990s he played regularly with the London Jazz Composers Orchestra led by fellow bassist Barry Guy. He worked on soundtracks of the motion pictures Merry-Go-Round (1981), Naked Lunch (1991, together with Ornette Coleman) and Alles was baumelt, bringt Glück! (2013).[3]

He has also worked with (among many others) bassists Peter Kowald and Joëlle Léandre, guitarist Derek Bailey, clarinetists Theo Jörgensmann and Aurélien Besnard, saxophonists Peter Brötzmann, Evan Parker and Joe Maneri, and pianist Paul Bley.

Barre is the father of rock guitarist Jay Crawford from the band Bomb, of the bassist Dave Phillips and of singer Claudia Phillips, who was a one-hit wonder in France in 1987 with "Quel souci La Boétie". "

-Wikipedia (

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"Motoharu Yoshizawa (吉沢元治) (1931 - September 12, 1998) was an influential Japanese bassist known for playing in a distinctive free jazz and free improvisation style, sometimes deploying electronics and using the unusual self-designed five-string bass he referred to as the "Tiritack".

Yoshizawa collaborated with innumerable musicians over his long career; some of the better known include Masayuki Takayanagi, Masahiko Togashi, Takehisa Kosugi, Mototeru Takagi, Kaoru Abe, Steve Lacy, Dave Burrell, Derek Bailey, Evan Parker, Barre Phillips, Butch Morris, Elliott Sharp, Ikue Mori, Keiji Haino, Kan Mikami, Kazuki Tomokawa, Christopher Yohmei Blasdel & Tenko.

Yoshizawa began playing in a free style in the mid-1960s, in groups with Yosuke Yamashita and Kazunori Takeda, as well as in a famous jam session with Elvin Jones during John Coltrane's Japan tour of 1966. Yoshizawa's own trio with Mototeru Takagi was said to have been pivotal for Japanese free jazz, though no recordings survive. In 1969, Yoshizawa played with Masahiko Togashi's famous quartet and Masayuki Takayanagi's New Directions group, participating in both groups' landmark recording sessions of that year.Yoshizawa was a pioneer of solo bass performance, his experiments synchronous with those of Barre Phillips. He first played this style in 1969, though nothing was recorded until several years later. In the mid-1970s, Yoshizawa recorded three albums for solo bass. Later in the decade he had a fruitful collaboration with alto saxophonist Kaoru Abe, which led to the recording of one album, Nord.

In the 1990s, Yoshizawa began experimenting with an effects-laden, five-string bass of his own design. He spent six months living and playing in New York in 1989-90.

-Wikipedia (

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track listing:


1. Oh My!


1. Those Boys!

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descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Colleagues and friendly rivals throughout their occasional associations, bassists Barre Phillips and Motoharu Yoshizawa were also pivotal pioneers on their shared instrument. Oh My, Those Boys! documents a concert by the pair at a Café in Yoshizawa's native Japan in the spring 1994. Part of the performance was previously released under the auspices of producer Takeo Suetomi's Chap Chap imprint on a 1998 album bearing Yoshizawa's name. The duo played for nearly three hours that day leaving plenty of additional material worthy of widespread scrutiny, but Suetomi ended up tabling plans for a second release. Two decades later the Lithuanian label No Business brings the music to light as part of its ongoing Chap Chap reissue series.

Both bassists developed idiosyncratic and advanced approaches to solo improvisation early in their careers. Neither was a novice at tandem settings at the time of their meeting. Phillips made such encounters a semi-regular part of his output teaming at various times with Dave Holland, Peter Kowald and Barry Guy among others. Yoshizawa's recorded dialogues were less numerous, but included memorable match-ups with Dave Burrell, Derek Bailey and Evan Parker alongside a busy docket spent collaborating with countrymen like Karou Abe and Keiji Haino. He was also a capable luthier and the instrument he fields here, an electric vertical five-string bass, is of his original design.

Split into two sections of approximately fifty-five and twenty-minutes, the performance is a riveting and elaborately-structured experience in its entirety. Both bassists employ amplification to further vary their tonal palettes, but to starkly varying degrees. Echo and decay are regular parts of the conversational equation. Spidery pizzicato clusters pour forth from respective corners, percolating and comingling in a bottom-end stew of bulbous low-frequency sound. Yoshizawa's strings are distinguishable both in positioning and their malleable timbral properties, which repeatedly trade the recurring acoustic sharpness of Phillips' more conventional set for an elastic resonating presence and consolidated weight particularly when the pair commence to jousting with bows.

Space and silence and spontaneous decisions directing the application of the same are indispensable components to the duo's success. Even absent the visual aspects of the concert it's still possible to sense the cues and communications that determine the action. The strata of arco drones laced with ambient electronics that occupy the middle of the first piece merge into a grayscale color field of somber string overtones. Phillips' switch to scuttling fingers against by turns billowing and fulminating formations from Yoshizawa's electricity-derived manipulations signals another seismic shift.

An encounter two years later yielded another date for P.S.F.. Some two years after that Yoshizawa took his own life and opportunities for edifying exchanges such as this one came to a sudden, disheartening halt. What remains of their partnership is a rare example of proverbial boys being boys as an advantageous arrangement."-Derek Taylor, Dusted Magazine

Also available on CD.
300 LP copies limited edition

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Related Categories of Interest:

Vinyl Recordings
Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
Japanese & Asian Improv/Rock
European Improvisation and Experimental Forms
Duo Recordings
Stringed Instruments
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