JJ 04/79: Derek Bailey / One Music Ensemble

First published Jazz Journal, April 1979


Opponents of Bailey’s playing often claim that there is a sameness about his performances. Just the opposite is true and at times we hear a side of his musical personality that is paraded a little less often. The guitarist makes greater use of sustained notes than usual, bending and shading them in contrast to his more normally angular and declamatory method.

Of course, plenty of that parent style is heard, but it does indicate that, even in 1973, Bailey was showing an increasing awareness of tonal depth and gradation. The One Music Ensemble is something of a solo version of the A.M.M. Concept, with random backgrounds including a radio tennis commentary.

At times Panton’s piano moves from rolling Jimmy Blythe-type figures to Richard Abramsish dissonance with disconcerting suddenness. His oboe style is strangely formal, his control on tenor is impressive and he uses his voice in a weird, highly personal manner.

In all, it is a rather uneasy coupling, although it is one that is never without interest.
Barry McRae

(a) Nellie; (b) Kellie; (a) Bellie; (a) Gellie; (a) Wellie; (a) Tellie (19.15 min) – (b) So 74; (b) Root; (b) Sole; (b) Home; (b) A Little Sanity I Coda-bye (21 min)
(a) Derek Bailey (elg). 1973. (b) David Panton (reeds/p/pc). 1974.
Nondo DP LP 002