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Ornette Coleman

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Ken Weinstein
Big Hassle Media
weinstein@bighassle.com
212-619-1360

Biography

CELEBRATE ORNETTE PAYS TRIBUTE TO VISIONARY GIANT OF 

AMERICAN MUSIC

DELUXE, LIMITED EDITION BOX SET CAPTURES TWO MEMORABLE EVENTS,

SHOWCASING STUNNING ROSTER OF PLAYERS AND MUSICIANS

INCLUDING THE LATE GREAT ORNETTE COLEMAN HIMSELF 

DEEP LINE-UP ALSO FEATURES SUCH ICONIC ARTISTS AS CECIL TAYLOR, SONNY ROLLINS, JOE LOVANO, HENRY THREADGILL, DAVID MURRAY, PHAROAH SANDERS, GERI ALLEN,

AND COLEMAN’S LIFELONG COLLABORATOR, SON DENARDO COLEMAN

CELEBRATE ORNETTE TO BE RELEASED ON 

SOUND X RECORDS JANUARY 29, 2016

(New York, NY) Sound X Records has announced the pre-sale of Celebrate Ornette on Pledge Music  http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/ornettecoleman. A deluxe, limited edition box set paying tribute to the legendary Ornette Coleman. The set includes two dozen performances from some of modern music’s most iconoclastic artists, all centered on the visionary saxophonist/composer/bandleader/thinker’s incomparable legacy of music, ideas, and revolutionary spirit. Celebrate Ornette will be released on Sound X Records January 29, 2016. 

Celebrate Ornette is curated by Coleman’s son and lifelong collaborator, drummer/bandleader Denardo Coleman. Priced at $250 plus shipping, the set will comprise four LPs, three CDs, two DVDs, extensive liner notes, exclusive photographs and the Ornette Coleman Poster from renowned Italian photographer Elena Carminati, and an actual program from the June 2015 memorial service honoring Coleman’s passing earlier this year signed by Denardo Coleman. An audiophile’s delight, the Celebrate Ornette LPs were mixed by S. Husky Hoskulds, mastered by Ted Jensen, and pressed on 180 gram vinyl at United Record Pressing in Nashville.

Celebrate Ornette: The Music of Ornette Coleman was held June 12, 2014 at Brooklyn, NY’s historic Prospect Park Bandshell, with Coleman himself taking part in a stunning exploration of his own astonishing body of work. Convened by Denardo Coleman (whose own Denardo Coleman Vibe served as the evening’s core backing group), the event “wasn’t connected to a milestone birthday or a record or seemingly anything else,” noted the New York Times‘ Ben Ratliff, “but to the premise that it is right to fuss over people like Mr. Coleman, in his presence, while the opportunity remains.” Indeed, Celebrate Ornette saw a remarkably deep line-up of musicians on hand to pay homage, including Bill Laswell, Branford Marsalis, Bruce Hornsby, Flea, David Murray, Geri Allen, Henry Threadgill, James Blood Ulmer, Joe Lovano, John Zorn, Laurie Anderson, Nels Cline, Patti Smith, Ravi Coltrane, Savion Glover, Sonny Rollins, Thurston Moore, and the Master Musicians of Jajouka.

Sadly, Ornette Coleman passed away on June 11, 2015, just as a live recording of Celebrate Ornette was being prepared for release. The memorial service, held two weeks later at Manhattan’s Riverside Church, saw inspired tributes and performances by many of Coleman’s greatest fans, friends, and followers, among them Pharaoh Sanders, Cecil Taylor, Henry Threadgill and Jason Moran, Jack DeJohnette and Savion Glover, David Murray, Joe Lovano, Al Macdowell, Charnett Moffett, and members of Ornette’s renowned Prime Time band, including Jamaaladeen Tacuma, Charles Ellerbe, Bern Nix, Ken Wessel, Chris Rosenberg, and Dave Bryant. The New Yorker‘s David Remnick lauded the service for “being full of (Coleman’s) sense of artistic limitlessness and spacey experiment… With every album, Coleman pushed his music further beyond most of his jazz contemporaries and masters. He wrote and played in a way that seemed intuitive, but which was grounded in his deep knowledge of all the rules of classical harmony and the blues (and his roadhouse days in Texas)… There is no end to the artists who have been influenced by Ornette Coleman.” The memorial proved, in Denardo Coleman’s words, to be “one for the ages,” prompting him to include an exclusive recording of the service on the upcoming Celebrate Ornette box set.

“No musician has ever roiled the jazz establishment quite as much as (Ornette) Coleman,” once wrote critic Gary Giddins and while he is now cherished, as Ben Ratliff wrote in his New York Times obituary, as “a native avant-gardist, personifying the American independent will as much as any artist of the last century,” Coleman was in fact seen as an implacable radical at the time of his emergence in the late 1950s. In eulogizing Coleman, the Riverside Church’s Dr. James A. Forbes Jr. placed Ornette’s mission in a social context. “It’s as if there’s some sinister force in the universe that keeps people from singing the songs inside of them,” he said. “But, Ornette, you kept on telling  us, ‘Hey, don’t be intimidated by the song patrol. Don’t get stuck in the rut of conventionality and routine. Release the song that’s inside of you.’ Oh, Ornette — you were doing God’s bidding in that.”

Perhaps it is Denardo Coleman who may have best elucidated his father’s groundbreaking legacy. “It’s not that Ornette thought out of the box,” he said, speaking at the memorial. “He just didn’t accept that there were any boxes.”

For more information, please visit http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/ornettecolemanwww.ornettecoleman.com and www.facebook.com/officialornettecoleman.

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