NPR TINY DESK CONCERT
13 Minutes With Jazz Master Abdullah Ibrahim
NEW RELEASE: Solotude
- INTRO: 13 Minutes With Abdullah Ibrahim
- LIVE CONCERT: Tiny Desk(Home) Concert (13:11 mins)
- NEW RELEASE: Solotude on Spotify and YouTube
13 MINUTES WITH ABDULLAH IBRAHIM
The 87 year-old jazz master offers a brief musical interlude on NPR’s Tiny Desk (Home) Concert series to promote new release Solotude
South African jazz pianist Abdullah Ibrahim returned to his homeland in 1990 at the personal invitation of Nelson Mandela. He moved to Europe in 1962 and over the course of three decades distinguished himself as a premier player both under the name Dollar Brand and, when he converted to Islam, as Abdullah Ibrahim. You can read a brief AllMusic.com biography here.
Last Wednesday NPR released a lovely three-song interlude from the jazz master in its Tiny Desk (Home) Concert series to promote his new release, Solotude.
Tiny Desk founder Bob Boilen wrote this in his notes for the solo show:
“It’s less a concert and more witnessing a master thoughtfully creating an atmosphere, a vibe. And for 13 short minutes, I feel seated in Abdullah Ibrahim’s home in Chiemgau, Germany, witnessing seven decades of experience slowly dripping from his fingers and touching my soul.
“Abdullah Ibrahim, now 87, has witnessed the horrors of apartheid. He grew up in South Africa and composed what would become known as the “anti-apartheid anthem,” “Mannenberg.” Nelson Mandela called him “our Mozart.” He also successfully made music under the name Dollar Brand, and worked with jazz legends including Duke Ellington, Max Roach, Don Cherry and Archie Shepp.
“In 1968, he converted to Islam and changed his name from Dollar Brand; more recently, he became an NEA Jazz Master. In my 18 years directing All Things Considered, I’d often reach for his music to play between news stories to give the audience a chance to think and reflect. His music is like that; it’s mind-opening. And here he is seated at his piano, his white hair luminous, his fingers delicate, while he reflects on the past and helps clarify the present.
“The music is from his newest album Solotude, a recording made to an empty concert hall in southeast Germany during the 2020 lockdown, which for me became a source of calm when it was released toward the end of 2021. To witness this Tiny Desk (home) concert, I suggest you take these next 13 minutes, turn off your distractions and discover the strength in delicate reflection from a gentle man who has some much to share. SET LIST “Blue Bolero” “Signal On The Hill” “Once Upon A Midnight”
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Stay tuned and enjoy,
13 March 2022