Harlem Bush Music

Gary Bartz NTU Troop

Harlem Bush Music
  • CAT # MCD-47101-25

    1. Rise 5:29
    2. People Dance 10:36
    3. Drinking Song 5:18
    4. Taifa 4:22
    5. Parted 2:05
    6. The Warriors' Song 6:10
    7. Blue (A Folk Tale) 18:05
    8. Uhuru Sasa 6:49
    9. Vietcong 5:17
    10. Celestial Blues 7:35
    11. The Planets 5:08

In late 1970 to early 1971, when the sessions that produced the companion LPs herein were recorded, the notion of "Black consciousness" had come to the fore in both pop/soul and jazz. During this period Gary Bartz (b. 1940), a rapidly-rising alto saxophonist whose muscular attack had attracted the attention of Miles Davis, who hired him to share the front line in the trumpeter's fusion group, also formed the potent Ntu Troop. Like tenor saxophonist Pharoah Sanders's contemporaneous quartet featuring singer Leon Thomas, this version of the Ntu Troop spotlighted a saxophonist-vocalist team in Bartz and Andy Bey, whose recent resurgence has been among the happier musical stories of the early 21st century. The lyrics addressed various aspects of urban African-American life; with Bartz providing the obbligatos and solos on alto and soprano saxophone, Bey eloquently addressed such matters as Black pride and self-determination as well as the daily joys and sorrows of Black America. Harlem Bush Music finds post-bop and post-Coltrane sensibilities melding with African sounds, yielding music that is equal parts mind, body, and soul.

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