Saturday, March 26, 2011

Pharoah Sanders - A Prayer Before Dawn

Recorded in 1987, A Prayer Before Dawn is one of Pharoah Sanders' gentle, reflective dates. Some jazz fans may cringe at his versions of "Christmas Song" and Whitney Houston's "The Greatest Love of All," but the music displays a heartfelt spirituality as opposed to financial slickness. It is the opposite of Sanders' characteristic fire-breathing tenor of his Impulse days, but there is nobility in taking this tranquil direction; Sanders refuses to repeat himself. He demands you listen with open ears, dropping preconceived notions. For instance, unlike the adult contemporary direction taken by one-time free jazz tenor titan Gato Barbieri, this date doesn't sound like a polished commercial venture as much as a quiet, meditative one. The use of tabla, sarod, and chandrasarang adds to the session's spiritual nature. - by Al Campbell, AMG

This is a Sanders'cd I would recommend to all those who have heard of Sanders as a wild musician,shrieking through the saxophone. Here,he is in a very mellow, ,not to say soft ,mood. Religiosity or more accurately, spirituality permeates all the numbers on this cd. He reminds us of an evening service in a protestant church. Even those who are not fanatic jazz fans but like music with rythm should enjoy this cd which is definitely,one of the best this African-American Griot has produced. - by A Customer, Amazon.com

Artist: Pharoah Sanders
Album: A Prayer Before Dawn
Year: 1987
Label: Evidence (1993)
Total time: 56:00

Tracks:
1.  The Light At The Edge Of The World (Piero Piccioni) 5:11
2.  Dedication To James W. Clark (Pharoah Sanders) 5:18
3.  Softly For Shyla (William Henderson) 5:22
4.  The Greatest Love Of All (Linda Creed/Michael Masser) 8:27
5.  Midnight At Yoshi's (Pharoah Sanders) 5:57
6.  Living Space (John Coltrane) 4:35
7.  After The Rain (John Coltrane) 6:37
8.  In Your Own Sweet Way (Dave Brubeck) 7:09
9.  Christmas Song (Mel Tormé/Robert Wells) 7:24

Personnel:
Pharoah Sanders (Tenor Saxophone)
William Henderson (Piano and Synthesizer)
John Hicks (Piano) - 7
Brian McLaughlin (Tabla) - 5
Lynn Tausig (Sarod and Chandrasarang) - 5
Alvin Queen (Drums) - 5

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