Turn Pain into Power

Turn Pain into Power

by Fred Ho
     
 
This album is an excellent example of what Fred Ho does best -- and worst. Ho's music on this disc is formally complex, rhythmically varied, and emotionally compelling; his composition and band-leading skills cannot be praised too highly. He writes tonally, for the most part, with infusions of the blues and various folk music. Ho's sound is sax-centric. His primary

Overview

This album is an excellent example of what Fred Ho does best -- and worst. Ho's music on this disc is formally complex, rhythmically varied, and emotionally compelling; his composition and band-leading skills cannot be praised too highly. He writes tonally, for the most part, with infusions of the blues and various folk music. Ho's sound is sax-centric. His primary sax section -- Sam Furnace on alto, Allen Won on tenor, and Ho on baritone -- works together hand-in-glove; the band is a descendent of Charles Mingus' late-'50s and early-'60s ensembles (particularly the latter's group with Booker Ervin and John Handy). The rhythm section swings freely, yet plays down Ho's difficult forms with aplomb. Ho's imagination is vast, and his leadership skills must be strong; it's unusual to hear jazz that so successfully combines freedom and precision. The group plays like a band, not a collection of freelancers. Ho also writes for voice, which is the downside of this music, for his texts are seldom artful -- especially those he pens himself. Indeed, they are frequently embarrassingly heavy-handed. It's difficult to criticize, in a way, for his musical settings are so natural; he has a definite gift for something that resembles jazz opera or cantata. The leftist political lyrics tend to be blunt and without grace (though not without worth, it should be added; they're moving in their way). Let Ho put away his poet's quill and give him a first-rate librettist, and he's liable to create something special. His compositions for small jazz ensemble are remarkable enough in themselves.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/18/1997
Label:
O.O. Discs
UPC:
0789481003020
catalogNumber:
30

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. Catching Hell Is Double the Trouble, Half the Rewards!  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble
  2. Un Canto a Mi Liberacion/A Song to My Liberacion  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble
  3. The Ballad of the Other  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble
  4. Turning the Other Cheek Only Gets You Two Sore Cheeks! /Essay to X  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble
  5. A Slave of a Slave No More! /Mujer Puertorriqueña, Puerto Rican Women  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble
  6. Don't Be Afraid, You Haven't Got It Made?  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble
  7. Turn Pain into Power! /The Climbers/Essay to Us  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble
  8. Act up! Before It's Too Late!  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble
  9. What's a Girl to Do?  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble
  10. The Earth Is Rockin' in Revolution/Drowning in the Yellow River  -  Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Fred Ho   Primary Artist,Leader,Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone,Woodwind
Jon Jang   Piano
Taru Alexander   Drums
Kiyoto Fujiwara   Bass
Sam Furnace   Alto Saxophone,Soprano Saxophone
Royal Hartigan   Drums,Timbales
Peter Madsen   Piano
John Shifflett   Bass
Allen Won   Tenor Saxophone,Woodwind
Francis Wong   Woodwind
Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble   Track Performer
Hafez Modirzadeh   Saxophone
Alma Villegas   Narrator
James Norton   Saxophone

Technical Credits

Joseph Celli   Producer
Fred Ho   Arranger,Producer
Alma Villegas   Poetry

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >