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Jamaaladeen Tacuma

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Peter McFerrin, May 13, 2002.

  1. Man, this guy can hold a groove and still play way, way, way out. Anyone who's into him should pick up the album he did with Calvin Weston and Derek Bailey(!).

    Is he still playing that silly Steinberger boat paddle?
  2. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Grant Calvin Wesley is one of my favorite drummers...another guy similiar is Cornell Rochester.
    Both played with "Blood" Ulmer & in Ulmer's other project, The Music Revelation Ensemble. In fact, Tacuma is one of those MRE albums(W/ Ronald Shannon Jackson on cans & David Murray on sax, I believe).
    A recent Tacuma/Wesley album I like is James Carter's Layin' In The Cut(?)...I'll have to recheck that title(I'm terrible at that!).
    Also, have you checked out Tacuma with Ornette's Prime Time(Body Meta?).

    Derek Bailey...what do you make of him?!
    There's an Arcana album I have where it's just a noiz/sonic orgy...I mainly bought it to hear Tony Williams is something other than a Jazz project.
    Caramba, NOT for the faint of heart! ;)

    ...& Bill Laswell is on bass w/ Williams/Bailey.

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    It Is so kool to hear that there are Bass players out there digging Jamaaladeen"s music.we have been discussing the possibilitie of recording together for a while but our schedule's have been getting in the way.hopefully we will shoot for this year.check out his recording called Brotherzone released in 99 with Jean Paul Bourelly on guitar and Daryl Burgee on drums.and anything that he's done with Ornette.(Whom I studied with)he's the bassplayer on Ornette's recording Dancing in your head under the name Rudy McDaniel his birth given name before he converted to Islam.he's still using the steinbergers mainly his white one which is one of the earliest. ones,and he has a signature bass made by a co.called DePinto.
  4. oddentity

    oddentity Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    I have that Arcana album ... interesting stuff. I think I read somewhere that it was Tony Williams' last album?

    I like Bailey's playing - I saw his revolving ensemble group, Company, last year at Tonic in NYC. Pretty 'out there' stuff.
  5. It's high on my list. I have too much music I need to buy, but my disposable income will be pretty significant in about two weeks, so I'm not worried.

    Ever heard Last Exit? Arcana is like a noisier, less-organized Last Exit that doesn't really swing.

    Derek Bailey...he's an interesting player. I once got flamed eight ways from Sunday for comparing him to Adrian Belew; perhaps I'm not advanced enough to know what the hell he's doing. "Skronk" is a great way of describing his style, nevertheless.
  6. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    I have but one disc by Last Exit; it's pretty out there in a noiz/improv sorta way.
    Ya gotta love the titles these guys come up with for their jams...

    I'm not sure what TW's last album was...my Arcana album is called The Last Wave.

    I just checked www.allmusic.com-
    Arc Of The Testimony(the album released after The Last Wave)was "one of Tony Willimams' last recordings".

    I'm pretty sure I have 2-3 of Tacuma's early 'solo' albums...I'll check it out later tonight.
  7. oddentity

    oddentity Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    Interesting... I have Arc of the Testimony. I didn't realize there was more Arcana material to be had... thanks!!
  8. Pre EB

    Pre EB

    Mar 15, 2002
    Denton, Tx
    Does he still associate with Laswell? He was on the first Golden Palominos album, which totally rocked, and Bill L. produced what I believe was his first solo project. These are years old, I know, but I've been wondering about him lately. you guys want noise, get "Low Life" with Laswell with Peter Brotzman. Germans are Crazy! I need $$$$$$$$ to buy all the records I need!
  9. winston

    winston Supporting Member

    May 2, 2000
    Berkeley, CA
    My favorite Tacuma album is "Gemini Gemini" with Wolfgang Puschnig on sax. Though they use samples, synths, and drum machines the music has a playful, organic vibe and Jamaaladeen gets really funky. Check out his Larry Graham-inspired line on the jaunty "Caravan" and his stunning facility on "A New Jazz Thing".

    Though his music grates on me at times I admire Derek Bailey for his intensity. The only album of his I've really heard is just him on solo acoustic guitar for about an hour and he never lets the energy of the music falter, pulling an endless barrage of provocative sounds from his instrument.

    Bailey's book "Improvisation-Its Nature and Practice in Music" is probably the best book that could ever be written on the subject. He examines jazz, Indian, free, and church organ traditions and highlights the significance of improv through history.

    He finds the 20th century approach to classical music--giving total supremacy to playing music exactly as written, with little improv besides the occasional cadenza--ignores the historical reality that improvisation was a prized skill that was routinely expected from pro-level players of the day.

    Bach was probably as well-known for his remarkable organ improv ability as his composition skills(and his fondness for procreation!) during his lifetime. Bailey suggests that the invention of sound recording changed peoples' expectations of music, leading musicians to follow the written score more closely.

    Next month I'm gonna be helping a Rasta friend of mine run a food booth at a reggae festival where Bill Laswell's Tabla Beat Science is headlining. Can't wait to check it out!
  10. sobie18


    May 5, 2002
    Shaw AFB, SC
    I played a Steinberger XL-2 during my Tops in Blue tours (94,98,01) and I would never own one. Too uncomfortable to play. However, it is the perfect road bass; graphite, no changes in humidity, easy to change strings (ONLY bass I've EVER broke a string on!), small, portable, active electronics, cold, lifeless, and a lot of bucks to pay for....Good luck!
  11. I saw Jamaaladeen Tacuma playing a Di Pinto bass. Made in Philly,kind of that retro vibe.Check out his early work on Tales of Captain Black by James Blood Ulmer. Personally I preferred his work when he was involved in that Free Funk movement,but, you are certainly correct in saying the guy is a groove monster.. And...Cornell Rochester is the baddest!!!!!! I love that Music Revelation Ensemble..

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    Hey Squeegeebrown the DiPinto he was playing was his signiture model.and fella's check out the recordings he's done with saxaphonist Ben Schachter,and the recordings In all language's,and Caravan of dreams live,both by Ornette Coleman.
  13. Dig Wilbur Ware

    Dig Wilbur Ware

    Mar 7, 2003
    There's a good online discography of Jamaaladeen Tacuma at:

    So much material. Has anybody heard his Japanese stuff on DIW or the old Jayne Cortez stuff? Also recommended. Even way back in '76 with Walt Dickerson he was advanced... Amazing talent.

    'Saw him for the first time @ UCLA with Prime Time (2 bassists, w/ Al McDowell on Fender Jazz) ... years later with Blood and GCWeston in Oakland -- the Steinberger had a distinctively brittle tone. Worth seeing, but Ulmer was not too inspired. Anybody see him with James Carter lately? Cecil Taylor did, and Loved It!
  14. Monkey

    Monkey Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2000
    Ohio, USA
    I've got his two early solo albums and "Body Meta". He is an amazing player.

    I've always admired Ornette and the players inspired by him (especially Charlie Haden). But I've found that I find Ornette's theories more satisfying than the actual music. Some of it is incredibly hard to listen to, but I really admire the ideas behind it.
  15. Dig Wilbur Ware

    Dig Wilbur Ware

    Mar 7, 2003
    Agreed with the Monkey. For such an open-ended and expansive/inclusive 'theory' as 'harmolodics,' the actual music is frustratingly mechanical, especially with Denardo on percussion.

    Perhaps Harmolodics actually refers to the earlier days, pre-electric, with Haden, Izenson, Garrison, Cherry, Bradford, Redman, Blackwell, Higgins...
  16. PSouth


    Mar 15, 2003
    Show Stopper is my favorite Tacuma album of what I own. I am just now trying to get into the Mirakle album with Bailey.
  17. dang..I didn't know you guys were hip to this stuff? I just heard three tracks from that Mirakle album with Bailey/Weston/Tacuma and am really digging it.
    G.Calvin weston is a hoot! I saw Ulmer with Tacuma and Weston in Seattle years back. It was terrific to see them all together. At one point, GC did a solo drum piece which included him scat-singing along with his playing. The piece evolved into him telling a little story along with his wild playing; hilarious. the whole audience was in stitches, very entertaining. Ulmer was top notch that evening. Tacuma was the real straight man that night but his playing was totally inspiring. His bass tone isn't my favourite by any means but I hardly ever notice because of his playing. Saw him in the Prime Time line-up as well...with Denardo!! So fun.
    Ulmer can be hit or miss it's true. Some of my favs from him are "Black&Blue", "Tales.." and the first Music Revelation Ensemble album "In the name of..." with Amin Ali and Cornell Rochester. Both he and Weston are two of my favourite skin-dudes.
    Bourelly has one great album that I liked but honestly can't recall the title. That entire NY Knitting factory black rock scene is a big thrill. Seeing all those great players coming together...wow. Vernon Ried's album with Don Byron really stood out for me.
    The best Last Exit album IMO was the studio one. the live recordings are cool but I like the temperment of "Iron path" a bit more.
    anybody heard Frisell/Gibbs/Shannon-Jackson's "Power Tools?"
  18. jerry

    jerry Doesn't know BDO Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    Jamaaladeen has been one of my favorite players for a long time.......he sounds like nobody else, even when he had that 80's funk band Cosmetic.
    There is something in the water in Philly:bassist:
  19. tomtom


    Jun 17, 2002
    Philthy, PA
    if any of y'all wanna see some quicktimes of Jamaal and Calvin Weston doing some live film scoring; shoot me an email. It's mostly video footage, but they both can be seen, and definitely heard.
    It's my Mobile Pleasure Lounge/"doublewide trio"...two basses (me and Jam) two drums (Cal and this guy named Tony G) and two guitars (Rick Iannacone and Jeff Monjack)

  20. Tom I just got your mail last week, thanks so much! What a buzz to have videos of these folk...great stuff. will dig into your CD today. Thanks for taking the time to get those out to me.

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