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    Charles Gayle Trio at Olé Madrid

    January 1st, 2018

    Charles Gayle Trio at Olé Madrid in San Diego, California on Tuesday, February 27, 1996.
    Charles Gayle Trio at Olé Madrid in San Diego, California on Tuesday, February 27, 1996. Photo ©1996 by Rich Jacobs. Photo enlarges.

    Olé Madrid
    San Diego, California
    Tuesday, February 27, 1996.

    “Charles Gayle is a free jazz spaceship engine that has been igniting New York launching pads like the Knitting Factory for the last decade or two. This evening involved two long sets of ’60s-inspired free clamor divided by a half-hour break. The stand up bassist and drummer each soloed up their fair share of intense improv freedom as Gayle offered up anti-abortion / pro love / pro-Jesus sentiments punctuated by scratching sawmill violin; crude, ominous Casio keyboard chords; and cascading waterfalls that shoot up into the Sun via some really intense sax note / sheet wailing. It was a spontaneous sound aquarium that simultaneously stapled me to my chair and hurled me through distant expanses of beautiful uncertainty. It’s safe to say this performance was pure lift-off that took me a little bit further than out on a limb.”–GSD, Lou’s and the Abstract Truth (Lou’s Records newsletter), February 1996

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    Charles Gayle + William Parker + Rashied Ali – Touchin’ on Trane

    May 26th, 2011

    Charles Gayle + William Parker + Rashied Ali - Touchin' on Trane

    The first time I heard Charles Gayle, I actually saw him, too, at a live show he headlined in San Diego back in 1996. Word was floating around amongst the spaghetti, I mean cognoscenti that Mr. Gayle was enjoying the fruits of a proper national tour brandishing the torch of 1960s free jazz, after suffering through years of homelessness. All human heads in the small but packed house that night got completely incinerated by an infinite amount of molten noodles emanating from Charles’ gale force breath blown through a smoldering sax, as he preached the gospel of Jesus Christ briefly in between tracks. Aside from the latter, the program on this excellent CD is quite similar, cleanly recorded five years earlier in late 1991. Occasionally, the maelstrom subsides to let William or Rashied take a mellow, soulful solo.

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