Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Don Cherry Honored By DownBeat Hall of Fame

Congratulations to Don Cherry for his selection in the DownBeat Critics Poll to the magazine's Hall of Fame. Cherry, with his pocket trumpet was an important part of Ornette Coleman's "Change of the Century." In addition to being a vital part of Coleman's pioneering group, he later played with Sonny Rollins, recorded with John Coltrane, as well as joined Steve Lacy for an album devoted to Thelonious Monk's Music. He was a member of the New York Contemporary Five with Archie Shepp and John Tchicai and recorded with Albert Ayler and Gato Barbieri. He also recorded for Blue Note as a leader including the albums Complete Communion and Symphony For Improvisors.

With Coleman alumni Dewey Redman, Charlie Haden, and Eddie Blackwell, he was a member of the group Old and New Dreams who had four albums on Black Saint and ECM. He then became involved in world fusion music, including the "world jazz" group Codona, a trio that consisted of Don Cherry (trumpet, melodica, organ), Collin Walcott (tabla, sitar, percussion), and Nana Vasconcelos and recorded 3 albums for ECM. 

Cherry also recorded duets with Eddie Blackwell and several world music albums under his own name including Brown Rice, and MultiKulti. He passed away from liver cancer at the age of 58 in 1995. 

Here are several videos to celebrate his music. First the Don Cherry Trio in Paris in 1971.

Here is Don Cherry in a group performing in 1980.

And finally Don Cherry's "MultiKulti" in 1991.

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