Giorgio Gaslini


Dischi Della Quercia BXS 5001


Artists :
Giorgio Gaslini ( Piano, Conductor )
Release date
Oct 8, 2013


11 CD box-set


THE COMPLETE REMASTERED RECORDINGS ON DISCHI DELLA QUERCIA is a monographic box-set collection aimed at recounting the most beautiful chapters that revolutionised the history of jazz. This is part of a series that was launched in March 2010 dedicated to the Black Saint and Soul Note labels. A deep philological work, beginning with the original recordings on original master tapes, patiently integrally remastered paying strict attention to sound quality.

In the early 90s, Maestro Giorgio Gaslini moves to the other side of the desk and creates the DDQ label to give voice to Italian musicians and expand the possibilities for his artistic productions.  Over the years, Giorgio Gaslini becomes increasingly absorbed in numerous artistic engagements, entrusting his creation to the experienced Bonandrini family, the founders of the historic Soul Note label with whom he had collaborated for a decade.  This trust is well invested:  production continues, maintaining the same concept, and DDQ assembles a catalog of 40 titles in just a few years.

Il Maestro Giorgio Gaslini, agli inizi degli anni '90, chiude il cerchio della sua carriera musicale, passando dall'altra parte della scrivania. Crea l'etichetta DDQ, con l'intento di dare voce ai musicisti italiani, oltre ad ampliare le possibilità delle sue produzioni. Col passare degli anni il maestro sempre più assorbito dai propri impegni artistici, decide di affidare la sua creatura alla famiglia Bonandrini, titolari della storica etichetta Soul Note con cui aveva una collaborazione decennale. La fiducia è ben riposta, con lo stesso concept la produzione continua, portando la DDQ ad avere un catalogo di circa 50 titoli.

MURALES (1. Murales I  2. Murales II  3. Murales III  4. Murales IV)

NEW ORLEANS SUITE (1. Appointment In New Orleans  2. Magnolias  3. Day Way  4. Ragazzine, vi prego ascoltare  5. Song For Diana  6. Crescent City  7. Jazz At Lu Charlie's)

FREE ACTIONS (1. I Movimento  2. II Movimento  3. III Movimento  4. IV Movimento  5. V Movimento)

GRAFFITI (1. Black Out  2. Soul Street  3. Ballo Popolare Sui Navigli  4. Black Night Black Light  5. Tastiere  6. Mexico City Free  7. Alle Fonti Del Jazz  8. La Ballata Del Pover Luisin)

SHARING (1. Simona  2. Four Lessons From The Third World  3. Sharing  4. Ode To A Green Frisbee  5. Tango-Barcarola  6. Ow-Wah Blues)

LIVE AT THE PUBLIC THEATER IN NEW YORK (1. Assalto Al Castello  2. New York Song  3. Swing Low Sweet Charlie  4. Ballo Popolare Sui Navigli  5. Mediterranean Suite  6. Ricerca su "Free Actions"  7. Ricerca su "Mexico City Free") 

ECSTASY (1. Ecstasy  2. Lonely Woman  3. Pensieri Del Cuore, Avventure Della Mente  4. La Voce Del Mare)

FOUR PIECES (1. Composition N. 101  2. March  3. Love Chant  4. Anbrax)

INDIAN SUITE (1. Indian Suite Parte I  2. Indian Suite Parte II)

MONODRAMA (1. Musica Verticale  2. Monodrama  3. Risposte Senza Domande)

SKIES OF CHINA (1. Skies Of China  2. Suite Lirica  3. Esp 3)



It’s hard to imagine a musician so central to the jazz life of his country as the Italian pianist Giorgio Gaslini. Born in 1929, he was as fascinated by jazz as classical music and began performing by the end of WWII. An intrepid explorer from the first, he was combining improvisation and the tone rows of Viennese serialism by 1957; a busy film composer as well, he created a score for jazz quartet for Michelangelo Antonioni’s La Notte in 1961. When a wave of American avant jazz innovators migrated to Europe, Gaslini embraced the opportunity, adding guests like Steve Lacy and Don Cherry to his regular quartet. A founding father of Italian free jazz, Gaslini was also an essential figure in the development of the Italian Instabile Orchestra, composing the masterpiece Skies of Europe for the allstar band. When he passed away at 84 in July, jazz lost one of its great international catalysts.
Like many creative musicians in the ‘70s, Gaslini launched his own record label, Dischi Della Quercia, “discs of oak”, both to document his own work and that of his associates. This boxed set collects Gaslini’s own recordings for the label, 11 albums made between 1976-85. The set follows the format of CAM JAZZ reissues of the Black Saint and Soul Note catalogue: the CDs are in miniature facsimiles of the original LPs. The reduced texts can be hard to make out, but it’s a mother lode of interesting, formerly hard-to-find music at an inviting price.
While Gaslini had plenty of radical associations, much of his music here is set in a postbop mainstream that would have been accessible to an audience open to contemporaries like Woody Shaw and Joe Henderson. It was an era when Gaslini was an ambassador for Italian jazz and jazz in general and several of these discs document or commemorate his travels, including annual trips to the U.S. from 1976-81. He appeared at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in 1976 and 1977, not exactly a hot bed for European Third Stream. Gaslini’s New Orleans Suite has touches of piano interior and ambient sound, but it’s also lyrical and soulful, with tenor saxophonist Gianni Bedori, a regular associate at the time, managing to balance the outside and the funky with some of George Adams’ aplomb.
The contemporaneous Murales, however, is far more adventurous, with bassist Bruno Tommaso and drummer Andrea Centazzo negotiating a minefield of shifting tempos and meters. Gaslini’s intrepid playfulness and sometimes wild eclecticism as a composer are even more apparent when the band expands, most notably on the sextets of Free Actions (1977) and Graffiti (1978) and the quintet of Live at the Public Theater in New York (1980), all energized by the fiery bass clarinet and alto sax of Gianluigi Trovesi.
What emerges from Gaslini’s various suites is a happy explorer, recalling worldly journeys and launching musical adventures. He was the first Italian jazz musician to play in India and China and the result of each journey was an extended suite. Indian Suite from 1983 is a half-hour work in two parts, touching on some drone-based materials that suggest Indian classical music as well as episodes with the frenetic cheerfulness of some Indian pop. But it’s Gaslini’s own language that emerges triumphant, a fondness for floating clusters and fractured boppish themes (his writing can hint at influences from Monk to Schoenberg, George Russell to Shorty Rogers) among which the Indian elements are merely incidental. The title suite of Skies of China is filled with a delicate light, a springboard for flutist Claudio Allifranchini and bassist Piero Leveratto.
While Gaslini’s talent as a pianist often takes a backseat to his bandleading and composing here, it’s highlighted in a series of duet LPs with prominent Americans. Sharing, with trombonist Roswell Rudd, is both witty and soulful, including Rudd’s broadly Romantic foray into dance with “Tango-Barcarola”. Ecstasy, with bassist Eddie Gomez, is alive with impulsive virtuosity. The pianist’s rich harmonic invention shines on Ornette Coleman’s “Lonely Woman”, suggesting Gaslini’s transforming solo explorations of Monk, Ayler and Sun Ra repertoire. Four Pieces (1985) unites him with reedplayer Anthony Braxton, the two exchanging lines that race beyond personality on an extended version of Braxton’s “Composition 191” and Gaslini’s “March”.

1/10/2014The New York City Jazz RecordStuart Broomer

L’etichetta “Dischi della Quercia” nacque su iniziativa di Giorgio Gaslini, spinto dal desiderio di autoprodurre la propria musica. Siamo nella metà degli anni Settanta e il pianista milanese è tra i protagonisti della scena creativa europea. Ecco riemergere, tra gli undici album del cofanetto, la suite “Murales” (1976), l’incontro con Roswell Rudd in “Sharing” (1979), con Anthony Braxton in “Four Pieces” (1982) e con Eddie Gomez in “Ecstasy” (1981).

30/07/2014JazzitLuciano Vanni
Giorgio Gaslini

E’ l’integrale cronologico, targato Dischi della Quercia, realizzato tra il 1976 e il 1985 da Giorgio Gaslini, fondatore della label. Questo musicista teso alle commistioni universali è impegnato da oltre sei decenni a codificare un personale gramelot sonoro a cui va stretta qualsiasi definizione. Non si contano i meriti di Gaslini, non solo in ambito italiano: è stato il primo a provare a svincolare progressivamente il jazz nazionale (ne ha caldeggiato l’ingresso in conservatorio) dai calligrafismi e dagli ingombranti riferimenti d’oltreoceano. Ha scritto due volumi basilari traccianti le sue poco conformistiche intenzioni lessicali, ossia “Musica totale” (Feltrinelli, 1975) e “Tecnica e arte del jazz” (Ricordi, 1982).
Undici gli album del box, da “Murales” e “New Orleans Suite”, entrambi pubblicati nel ’76, al conclusivo “Skies Of China” del 1985. L’artista indaga ogni angolazione espressiva supportato da improvvisatori del calibro di Gianni Bedori, Bruno Tommaso, Andrea Centazzo, Gianluigi Trovesi (straordinario in “Graffiti” e “Free Actions”), Roswell Rudd, Eddie Gomez, Anthony Braxton. Con gli ultimi tre ha realizzato altrettante prove in duo ben accolte dagli addetti, in particolare l’arrischiato “Four Pieces” (1982) con Braxton. Si staglia un pianista/compositore/arrangiatore dalla penna sopraffina, le cui sofisticate partiture documentano una reale evoluzione della cosiddetta third stream, che il Nostro riteneva interessante ma fondamentalmente irrisolta. Gaslini passa con autorevolezza dallo scritto all’improvvisato senza quasi darlo a intendere, coniando un arguto sincretismo comprendente le teorie seriali di Schönberg, il free e la tradizione afroamericana, le innovazioni della scuola di Darmstadt, le geniali intuizioni di Charles Ives. Un cofanetto/Bibbia.

27/5/2014AudioreviewEnzo Pavoni
Giorgio Gaslini

Soit, compactée et remasterisée, la matière de onze LP correspondant à une décennie (1976-1985) de la vie musicale d’un personnage historique (né en 1929) et quelque peu controversé de la jazzosphère transalpine. Inévitablement comparé à notre Jef Gilson, moins pour leurs qualités musicales intrinsèques que pour leur fonction de (au choix) catalyseur-assembleur-révélateur-découvreur de talents. D’où, chez Gaslini, une boulimie d’expériences et de rencontres à quoi l’on doit, au fil de l’actualité et au gré des partenaires sollicités, une succession de phases, ici du bebop aux diverses mouvances “free” en passant par le Troisième Courant (compositeur, il n’a pas échappé aux tentations de mixage jazzdodécaphinisme…). Difficile, dès lors, d’élire dans ce continuum discographique commercialement insécable un volume plutôt qu’un autre. Si les plus curieux du pianisme gaslinien aux fantasmes de synthèse se pencheront sur son duo avec la flagrante virtuosité d’Eddie Gomez (“Ecstasy”), les fans d’Anthony Braxton s’attarderont sur les lyriques abstractions de leur “Four Pieces”, tandis que “Sharing” avec Roswell Budd (autre duo qui aurait pu compléter l’inventaire de ce numéro), réjouira les amoureux d’une musique roborative presque rustique. Quant aux autres albums, aux personnels exclusivement italiens, ils font la part belle à une brassée d’improvisateurs représentatifs de la scène transalpine de la fin du vingtième siècle, notamment les anchistes Gianni Bedori, fidèle entre les fidèles (qui fut à Gaslini ce que Desmond était à Brubeck), et Gianluigi Trovesi (souvent étiqueté comme un Portal italien à cause de son bilinguisme musical), le batteur free tous azimuts Andrea Centazzo, le contrebassiste violoncelliste Paolo Damiani… En fait, cette collection (qui ne prend en compte que ses albums pour Dischi Della Quercia et non ceux Pour Soul Note), si elle illustre assez bien un pan de l’histoire du jazz “made in Italy”, est sans doute moins éclairante sur l’œuvre gaslinienne que sa bande-son pour “La Notte” (1961) et ses “Nuovi Sentimenti (1966: avec Rava, Cherry, Lacy, Kent Carter, Jenny-Clark et Aldo Romano). Mais ce serait une autre histoire et, surtout, un autre label.

6/12/2013Jazz MagazinePhilippe Carles

Le pianiste-compositeur milanais Giorgio Gaslini (né en 1929) est un musicien essentiel du jazz italien, actif depuis les années 50. Ce coffret présente 11 disques réalisés en 9 ans, une belle manière de rappeler que Gaslini, soucieux d’impliquer les musiciens de son pays a toujours été passionné par le vie du jazz afro-américain. Il fut le premier italien officiellement invité dans un festival aux USA (1976 - "New Orleans Suite" pour trace), a développé un art du duo (Roswell Rudd, Anthony Braxton, Eddie Gomez...) et s’est illustré aussi dans des formations plus ou moins larges (du quartet à l’octet ici mais aussi avec l’Italian Instabile Orchestra ailleurs). Une fois encore c’est CamJazz qui édite ce coffret "historique" (dommage encore que les textes des pochettes 30cm réduites soient souvent illisibles!), label qui avait publié “Incanti”, solo du pianiste enregistré en 2011.

1/11/2013culturejazz.frThierry Giard
Gaslini a tutto jazz

Il maestro Giorgio Gaslini, leader mondiale del jazz, continua a far parlare di sé.
…la prestigiosa etichetta CAM JAZZ di Roma, ha appena pubblicato un cofanetto, comprendente 11 cd rimasterizzati, riguardanti il decennio 1974-1984 della produzione artistica del musicista Giorgio Gaslini, nel campo del jazz progressivo europeo. Undici capolavori, che hanno fatto davvero la storia. Questa uscita prosegue la già avvenuta pubblicazione dell’Opera Integrale dell’autore (periodo 1948-1973). Tra i titoli dei cd, figurano “Murales”, “New Orleans Suite”, “Graffiti”, “Indian Suite”, “Ecstasy”, “Skies Of China”.

15/10/2013Gazzetta di ParmaFranco Brugnoli