Turn Pain into Power

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Chris Kelsey
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 ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Chris Kelsey
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.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/18/1997
  • Label: O.O. DISCS
  • UPC: 789481003020
  • Catalog Number: 30

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Catching Hell Is Double the Trouble, Half the Rewards! - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (6:38)
  2. 2 Un Canto a Mi Liberacion/A Song to My Liberacion - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (1:18)
  3. 3 The Ballad of the Other - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (1:02)
  4. 4 Turning the Other Cheek Only Gets You Two Sore Cheeks! /Essay to X - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (6:27)
  5. 5 A Slave of a Slave No More! /Mujer Puertorriqueña, Puerto Rican Women - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (6:54)
  6. 6 Don't Be Afraid, You Haven't Got It Made? - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (9:36)
  7. 7 Turn Pain into Power! /The Climbers/Essay to Us - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (17:48)
  8. 8 Act up! Before It's Too Late! - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (9:44)
  9. 9 What's a Girl to Do? - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (6:10)
  10. 10 The Earth Is Rockin' in Revolution/Drowning in the Yellow River - Fred Ho & The Afro-Asian Music Ensemble (4:19)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Fred Ho Primary Artist, 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
James Norton Saxophone
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
Technical Credits
Joseph Celli Producer
Fred Ho Arranger, Producer
Alma Villegas Poetry
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