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March 08, 1984 - Image 6

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1984-03-08

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4

ARTS
The Michigan Daily T ursday, March 8, 1984

Pose-6

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J

UB h
By Robert Danowski
W HAT SINGLE event can pack
together and mystify a crowd of
people ranging from '60s leftovers and
leather clad punks to calculator-clad
ehgineers and egocentric art students?
A sold out performance by a funk and
pump British Reggae band, UB40.
"After the spotlights finally burned
through an inspiring haze, UB40 was
revealed as a 10-member group whose
sheer size made them explode out of the
'darkness. They began their 15-song set
with two tunes off their latest album,
Labours of Love. The crowds over-
whelming familiarity with these two
songs, "Cherry Oh Baby" and "Red
Red Wine," was exciting as the audien-
ce took over the lead vocals of "Red
Wine" in unison a number of times.
The band slipped through the night
,with tunes spanning from the upbeat,
such as Bob Marley's "Moving On," to
the quasihallucinogenic "Madam
,Medusa." The latter song was filled
with echoed screams and electronically
senhanced drum beats that consumed
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the entire air space. The crowd never
stopped dancing throughout the two-
hour show, and their original reggae
dance steps, resembling the Return of
the Living Dead, was a sight in itself.
Six of the 15 tunes played were from
the Labour of Love album. These
popular songs gave the audience a shot
in the arm after long and intricate in-
strumentals which featured a five-man
brass section and a bongo player who
seemed to be pulling out a different
percussion contraption every five
seconds. The quicker beat and a touch
of the live atmosphere added a new life
to the songs to the point where the
album itself became disappointing to
listen to after such live exposure.
UB40 left the stage for what seemed
like an eternity, but a stomping and
persistent audience brought them back
for an encore with a cut off their
Present Arms album. The band tried to
match the stomping crowd with bass
that shook the hair on your head, and
concluded the show with a pseudo
summary of the night's performance
featuring the brass, bongos, and the
crazy sound effects.

Imagination.:Rahsaan,
Mingus and A rwuif

r

THE SOUND came from deep in
the bowels of the Michigan
Student Union. It was the sound of a
saxophone, or rather, three
saxophones, all played by the same
person simultaneously.
The person was Rahsaan Roland
Kirk, a blind black man who made
music for over twenty years. He
became the undisputed master of the
"circular breathing" technique,
which allowed him to inhale through
his nose while blowing through his
mouth. Rahsaan once played for over
two hours in London without taking a
single breath. If 'you don't believe
that, you can listen to a recording, ap-
propriately titled Prepare Thyself to
Deal With a Miracle, wherein he per-
forms breathlessly for twenty
minutes. The amazing thing, though,
is not the performance, but the music
itself. Rahsaan looked at life in terms

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T ONIGHT, Hill Auditorium will be
filled with the euphony of the Or.-
chestre National de France. Renowned
conductor Lorin Maazel will present
Stravinsky's Firebird and Symphony No.
3 by Rachmaninoff.
This much-touted orchestra,
celebrating its 50th anniversary this
year, has taken extensive world tours
throughout Eastern and Western
Europe, the Soviet Union, the United
States, Canada, South America, Egypt
and Japan, and has already played four
times in Ann Arbor.
Some former conductors include
Rostropovich, Boulez, Abbado, Bern-
stein, Ozawa and, from 1976 to 1982, it
boasted Maazel as Music Director.
WOMEN'S LIVES
"How Women Change and Grow"
with Kathleen Dannemiller, Consultant
at a
NOON LUNCHEON
(Home-made soup available at $ 100)
Friday, March 9, 1984
at GUILD HOUSE
802 MONROE

As Music Director of the Cleveland
Orchestra from 1972 to 1982 Maazel
conducted more than 3500 concerts in-
cluding seven world-wide tours. He now
graces the Vienna Staatsoper as
General Manager and Artistic Direc-
tor. Throughout his career, Maazel has
released over 150 recordings, 10 of
which won the Grand Prix du Disque
Award.
Thanks to the efforts of the Univer-
sity Musical Society,.Maazel will bring
his entourage to the University tonight
only. Tickets run from $8-18 and are
available at the door. There are many
good seats still available.
Furthermore, from 4-4:30 p.m. this
afternoon, all tickets will be on sale at
the door for five dollars; there is a two
ticket per person limit and no choice of
seats.
- Steven Susser
CLOWNING AROUND
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/j

of "bright moments," and you can
hear it.
Rahsaan Roland Kirk died in 1977.
Most of his records, dating back to
1956, are out of print and only in-
frequently available in used record
stores and cut out bins. The Union
sound came from a History of Jazz
lecture given on Tuesday night by
WCBN DJ Arwulf, sponsored by
Eclipse Jazz.
The two-hour lecture, part of a 10-
part series, focused on Kirk and
bassist/composer/band leader
Charles Mingus. Mingus, like Kirk,
brought something original and im-
portant to jazz music for several
decades. His story is fraught with the
frustrations and joys of being a
musician in a world not especially
geared toward black musicians.
Though he played with such great
artists as Lionel Hampton, Duke
Ellington, Jaki Byard, and Eric
Dolphv. Mingus wasn't always
treated nicely. He quit the well-known
Red Norvo Trio after Norvo wanted to
replace him with a white bassist for a
television appearance. During the 60s,
Mingus became one of many self-
exiled Americans playing in Europe,
where reception and understanding
were warmer*.
Mingus had a legendary energy, a
legendary appetite, and a legendary
temper. He allegedly punched out
saxman Jackie McLean, he shot
holes in hotel ceilings, stuff like that.
At one point, doctors were
prescribing amphetamines to curb
Mingus' voracious hunger. The
bassist lost 90 pounds, but in the
process shot his nerves to pieces.
Unable to sleep for days, he checked
himself into Bellevue Hospital, where
the doctor insisted that Mingus, like
most blacks, would profit from a fron-
tal lobotomy.
Incredible.
The best Mingus legends, however,
can be found on (hard to find) albums
like Pithecanthropus erectus,
Nostalgia in Times Square, and Oh
Yeah. Mingus had a knack for turning
old standards ("Tea for Two," Ger-
shwin's "A Foggy Day," etc.) inside
out the spontaneity, sincerity, and
creativity of his live sessions in
famous.
Strych to manzell.
Arwulf is a man who values
creativity and sincerity. Too often, he
says, the truly imaginative artists

RaIhsaxuan
... flutes and slide whistles V
are neglected.
"Every decade there will be the in-
novators, and then there will be the-
people who will pick it up and profit by
it," he says. "Nine times out of ten;
the guy who came up with it will not
profit."
Roland Kirk is a perfect example:
His unique style of flute playing was
turned into a multu-million dollar
bonanza for Jethro Tull flutist Ian An-
derson.
In addition to flute and tenor sax,
Kirk played a straightened out alto
called the. strych, and a scaled-down
soprano called the manzello. He was
also known for his ability on slide
whistle, nose flute, and any number of
hand/wind music makers.
"There's a difference between
gimickry and being really 'in-
novative," Arwulf points out. "A lot of
people put Roland Kirk down for
gimmicks, circus act type of things,
but at least they were innovative
gimmicks."
Deutsche dink
The History of Jazz series is a
welcome innovation itself, having
debuted last fall. This year's 10-week
series continues until April 3rd.
Michael Nastos of WEMU will discuss
AACM (Ass. for the advancement for
Creative Musicians) and avant gar-
de/modern developments next week.
Persons wishing to enroll now (at
about $2 a 'lecture) may do so by
calling Eclipse Jazz at 763-5924.
The lecture on Mingus/Rahsaan
was Arwulf's second in the series; the
first focused on :the great stride
pianist Fats Waller. On a . more
regular basis, Arwulf serves as jazz
director for the student-run radio
station, WCBN. His Thursday night
program, "You've Got to be Moder-
nistic," focuses on popular music
from eras past.' For example,
tonight's show focuses on "rinky
dink" ("overproduced music from the
first 30 years of recording") from pre-
WWII Germany.
"It's interesting to think about, that
the audience for this stuff was the
same public that voted in the Nazis,"
says Arwulf,.
"Modernistic" continues the CBN
tradition of a late-70s program called
"The Cornbelt Symphony," which fir-
st attracted Arwulf to the station.
"What really endeared (the show) to
me was that they played kiddie recor-
ds on radio," he recalls.
Arwulf also hosts a Sunday night
program entitled "Real Black
Miracles," which in upcoming weeks
will give special attention to the
musical imaginations of tenor master
Dewey Redmond (who performs at
the U Club on March 17) and the
Henry Threadgill Sextet (which
comes to Ann Arbor on March 31). Not
kiddie music.

I

4

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Daily
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4

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