Bobby Hutcherson - Effi

from “Patterns” (1980), Blue Note
Recorded on March 14, 1968

Written by Stanley Cowell

  • Effi
  • Bobby Hutcherson
  • Patterns

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Bobby Hutcherson - Effi (1968)

Another hard-to-find Bobby Hutcherson LP recorded in 1968 that languished on the Blue Note shelves until 1980. The playing here is hot and heavy, with some great flute work from James Spaulding, beautiful piano from Stanley Cowell–who wrote this cut–and sterling drum work from Joe Chambers, who contributed four compositions to the LP.

Stanley Cowell’s Brilliant Circles: A Lost Treasure of Hard Bop

In the late ‘60s, as the jazz scene and the jazz audience was splintering in various directions, the inventive, ever evolving hard bop movement was getting recorded less and less by the established U.S. companies like Blue Note and Prestige, leaving documentation up to small independents, European labels and musician-owned imprints. Stanley Cowell’s Brilliant Circles, made in New York for the British Black Lion/Freedom label, is a perfect example. The music is state-of-the-art and ensemble’s core (Cowell, Bobby Hutcherson and Joe Chambers) comes from the Bobby Hutcherson-Harold Land Quintet of the period. One of hard bop’s lost treasures.

-Michael Cuscuna
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Mtume Umoja Ensemble - Alkebu-Lan: Land of the Blacks (Live at the East) (Full Album)  

Baba Hengates
No Words
Separate Not Equal
Sifa (The Prayer)

Recorded - August 29, 1971

Released  - 1972

James Mtume - Conga, Tonette Horn Carlos Garnett - Tenor Sax, Flute Leroy Jenkins - Violin Ndugu - Drums Gary Bartz - Alto Sax, Soprano Sax Stanley Cowell - Piano Buster Williams - Bass Andy Bey - Vocals Joe Lee Wilson - Vocals Billy Hart - Drums Eddie Micheaux - Vocals Yusuf Iman & Weusi Kuumba - Poetry


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Stanley Cowell Trio - Ibn Mukhtar Mustapha (from Illusion suite, ECM, 1974)

A great short spiritual tune recorded for ECM by the Stanley Cowell Trio at the beginning of the 70’s, with Stanley Cowell on piano, Stanley Clarke on bass and Jimmy Hops on drums. A tightened tune with three distinct parts in less than 5 minutes that leaves no time for long solos. After a ‘free’ dialogue between bass and piano the groove suddenly settles with a kind of west-indies feel as Stanley Cowell turns on electricity. Then the tempo changes again and it’s Africa. 

Mirror Image
  • Mirror Image
  • Jack DeJohnette
  • The Jack DeJohnette Complex

Jack DeJohnette 

Mirror Image 

The DeJohnette Complex 

Milestone, 1969 

Drummer Jack DeJohnette's debut as a leader (which has been reissued on CD) has quite a bit of variety. The music ranges from advanced swinging to brief free improvisations and some avant-funk. DeJohnette(who doubles on melodica) is joined by Bennie Maupin (on tenor and flute), keyboardist Stanley Cowell, bassists Miroslav Vitous and Eddie Gomez, and drummer Roy Haynes. He uses six different combinations of musicians on the eight songs (five of his originals, John Coltrane's "Miles’ Mode,“ Cowell's "Equipoise” and Vitous' "Mirror Image"). Intriguing and generally successful music.


Music Inc. France, 1971

An incredible half-hour performance by Music Inc. with Charles Tolliver, Stanley Cowell, Wayne Dockery and Alvin Queen, that initially appeared on French TV in 1971.

-Michael Cuscuna

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Max Roach - Effi (Members Don’t Git Weary, 1968)         

Written by Stanley Cowell

Max Roach (Drums)
Gary Bartz (Alto Saxophone)
Charles Tolliver (Trumpet)
Stanley Cowell (Piano)
Jymie Merritt (Electric Bass)

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Stanley Cowell: Brilliant Circles

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There’s not much information out there on Stanley Cowell. What led you to his music?

I collected jazz from a very early age and for some reason this Stanley Cowell album really stuck to me. I guess there’s a division for me between jazz basics like Miles Davis and Coltrane, and the often namechecked space jazz stuff like Sun Ra and other out-there free jazz. Stanley Cowell is right in the middle of those two. He was quite an important B-list pianist from the late ‘60s, and this album features some dons like Bobby Hutcherson and Woody Shaw. I like listening to free jazz, but not for too long. I need some sort of structure to hold on to, with jazz or classical music, so that’s why I like this album a lot.


“B-list’? My ass, Cowell’s great as anyone of his era. Shit-talker…