An absolute masterpiece from the legendary Strata East catalogue. Highly regarded and incredibly sought after. Absolutely essential title.
Expertly mastered by Ray Staff and pressed on the best Pallas 180 gm Vinyl.
Re-mastering by: Ray Staff at Air Mastering, Lyndhurst Hall, London
Around the time of this recording, Stanley Cowell had achieved a degree of prominence as the pianist for the advanced bop quartet Music Inc., which he co-led with trumpeter Charles Tolliver, as well as for unusual projects like his Piano Choir. With Regeneration he chose another path, essentially trying to produce a jazz-infused pop album with strong African roots, perhaps owing a little bit to Stevie Wonder. He assembled an extremely strong cast of musicians for the venture, including Marion Brown, Billy Higgins, and Ed Blackwell, as well as several African string and percussion masters and, by and large, succeeded conceptually if not commercially. A few songs use vocals in a fairly standard pop framework, and, while they are performed capably enough, the lyrical content leaves something to be desired in typical mid-’70s fashion. But much of the rest of the music makes up for this with, among other things, a delightful fife and drum piece by Brown and strong bass work by Bill Lee (Spike’s dad). Regeneration is an interesting, often enjoyable album which, aside from its own small pleasures, provides a snapshot of some of the cross-fertilization in genres occurring at the time. Brian Olewnick/AMG
FORMAT: 180 gram LP x 1 gatefold sleeve
1. Trying to Find A Way: Acoustic Guitar – Jerry Venable /Drums [Bass] – Aleke Kanonu/ Drums [Snare], Cymbal [Ride] – Billy Higgins /Percussion [Water Drum] – Ed Blackwell /Piano, Synthesizer – Stanley Cowell /Vocals – Charles Fowlkes*, Glenda Barnes
2. The Gembhre: Bass – Bill Lee (2) /Kora – Stanley Cowell /Other [Mama-lekimbe], Percussion – Nadi Quamar
3. Shimmy Shewabble: Drums [Bass] – Aleke Kanonu /Drums [Parade] – Ed
Blackwell /Drums [Snare] – Billy Higgins
4. Parlour Blues: Harmonica – Psyche Wanzandae /Piano – Stanley Cowell
1. Thank You My People: Bass [Electric] – Charles Fowlkes* /Flute – Psyche Wanzandae /Kora – Stanley Cowell /Overtone Voice [Ibo Chanting] – Aleke Kanonu /Percussion – Billy Higgins, Ed Blackwell /Saxophone [Soprano] – Jimmy Heath /Vocals – Kareema (2) /Wind [Zuna] – John Stubblefield
2. Travelin’ Man: Flute – Jimmy Heath /Flute [Wooden] – Marion Brown /
Kalimba [Mbira] – Stanley Cowell /Percussion – Billy Higgins /Vocals – Charles Fowlkes*, Kareema (2)
3. Lullabye: Double Bass – Bill Lee (2) /Flute [Alto] – Jimmy Heath /Harp [Madagascan Harp] – Nadi Quamar* /Kora – Stanley Cowell /Other [Gembhre] – Billy Higgins /Vocals – Charles Fowlkes*, Kareema (2)
Recorded at Minot Sound Studios, White Plains, April 27, 1975. Mastered at Generation Sound, N.Y.C.
Pure Pleasure / Strata East SES-19765