The Elements (Remastered) Joe Henderson

Cover The Elements (Remastered)

Album info

Album-Release:
1974

HRA-Release:
28.07.2017

Label: Concord Records

Genre: Jazz

Subgenre: Mainstream Jazz

Album including Album cover Booklet (PDF)

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  • 1Fire11:08
  • 2Air09:58
  • 3Water07:33
  • 4Earth13:14
  • Total Runtime41:53

Info for The Elements (Remastered)



One of the greatest Joe Henderson albums of the 70s – a suite of tracks dedicated to the four elements – and served up with some great accompaniment from Alice Coltrane!

“The Elements” is a conceptual jazz album – yes it’s not a Prog Rock exclusive – based on the four elements Zodiac signs and the Universe as the Ancients saw it is based upon; Henderson goes transcendental, mystic, spiritual or tribal and he does it with total commitment and belief. He sought further “illumination” inviting [Artiist4353] as his harmonic partner plus double bass giant Charlie Haden and percussionists Kenneth Nash and Baba Daru Oshun as permanent participants; violin player Michael White is featured on three tracks and drummer Leon "Ndugu" Chancler on two.

„This is one of the odder Joe Henderson recordings. The four lengthy selections not only feature the great tenor-saxophonist but the piano and harp of Alice Coltrane (during one of her rare appearances as a sideman), violinist Michael White, bassist Charlie Haden, percussionist Kenneth Nash and Baba Duru Oshun on tablas. The somewhat spiritual nature of the music (Henderson's compositions are titled "Fire," "Air," "Water" and "Earth") and the presence of Alice Coltrane makes these Eastern-flavored performances rather unique if not all that essential: an early example of world music in jazz.“ (Scott Yanow, AMG)

Joe Henderson, tenor saxophone, flute, alto flute
Alice Coltrane, piano, harp, Tambura, harmonium
Charlie Haden, bass
Leon "Ndugu" Chancler, drums (on tracks 1, 4)
Kenneth Nash, narrator (4), flute (3), congas, North African Sakara Drum, bells, gong, percussion
Baba Duru Oshun, percussion, Tabla
Michael White, violin

Recorded October 15, 16, 17, 1973 at Village Recorders, Los Angeles
Engineered by Rick Heenan
Produced by Orrin Keepnews

Digitally remastered


Joe Henderson
is proof that jazz can sell without watering down the music; it just takes creative marketing. Although his sound and style were virtually unchanged from the mid-'60s, Joe Henderson's signing with Verve in 1992 was treated as a major news event by the label (even though he had already recorded many memorable sessions for other companies). His Verve recordings had easy-to-market themes (tributes to Billy Strayhorn, Miles Davis, and Antonio Carlos Jobim) and, as a result, he became a national celebrity and a constant poll winner while still sounding the same as when he was in obscurity in the 1970s.

The general feeling is that it couldn't have happened to a more deserving jazz musician. After studying at Kentucky State College and Wayne State University, Joe Henderson played locally in Detroit before spending time in the military (1960-1962). He played briefly with Jack McDuff and then gained recognition for his work with Kenny Dorham (1962-1963), a veteran bop trumpeter who championed him and helped Henderson get signed to Blue Note. Henderson appeared on many Blue Note sessions both as a leader and as a sideman, spent 1964-1966 with Horace Silver's Quintet, and during 1969-1970 was in Herbie Hancock's band. From the start, he had a very distinctive sound and style which, although influenced a bit by both Sonny Rollins and John Coltrane, also contained a lot of brand new phrases and ideas. Henderson had long been able to improvise in both inside and outside settings, from hard bop to freeform. In the 1970s, he recorded frequently for Milestone and lived in San Francisco, but was somewhat taken for granted. The second half of the 1980s found him continuing his freelancing and teaching while recording for Blue Note, but it was when he hooked up with Verve that he suddenly became famous. Virtually all of his recordings are currently in print on CD, including a massive collection of his neglected (but generally rewarding) Milestone dates. On June 30, 2001, Joe Henderson passed away due to heart failure after a long battle with emphysema. (Source: Blue Note Records, Scott Yanow)

" class="ng-binding ng-scope">Joe Henderson with Chick Corea

Booklet for The Elements (Remastered)

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