The Incredibly True Story of Ali Abdul Majeed Ali was born in Cleveland, Ohio and took up the guitar as a youngster.His talent for the instrument was immediately obvious and by the time he was a teenager he was a gigging member of the famous 'Caledonia Road Show'. The Caledonia Road Show was a well-known travelling event which featured, singers, dancers, musicians and the occasional comedian. Perhaps the most famous member of that show still with us today is the vocalist Jimmy Scott. Jimmy Scott and Ali were both young musical aspirants on the Cleveland jazz and r&b scene of the early 50's. In fact, when Jimmy Scott joined the Lionel Hampton Orchestra for a few tours Ali came along as the guitarist for a spell. The next major affiliation that Ali had was as a very early participant in what would go on to become Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers. At this time Blakey's outfit was a 17 piece big band but as the age of the big band was nearly over he soon downsized the band and the rest is history. From this point in the late 50's Ali had designs on greener pastures and by the early 60's he had set up residence in NYC and was affiliated with the burgeoning avant-garde jazz scene which was emerging in Manhattan. Perhaps the most significant compatriot that Ali found during that period was the late Albert Ayler. Ali also played with Frank Wright at that time and was involved with expanding the palette of the jazz guitar into the realm of Free Jazz just as Sonny Sharrock was doing around the same time with Byard Lancaster. Finally, in the late 60's Ali left Manhattan and moved to Philadelphia mirroring the trajectory of Sun Ra who relocated there at the same time. I met Ali at the laundromat in our neighborhood in West Philadelphia, an area well known for producing jazz artists like McCoy Tyner. In any event we began chatting and our mutual interests in art, literature and 'botany' gave way to a fast friendship. I ended up making a documentary about Ali called Silence Is A Sound while I was in filmmaking school at Temple University. After I realized that despite a lifetime of music making Ali had never been recorded I set about raising the money needed to make an album that would stand as the sole example of the inventive and soulful artist. We made this album the old-fashioned way, totally live without a singleoverdub. I hope that this record captures a little bit of his elegant, wistful magic of the fretboard. Ali-Abdul Majeed- Electric Guitar Ben Schachter- Soprano, Alto and Tenor Saxes Tyrone Brown- Acoustic Bass Adam Guth- Drums Engineer- Aaron Levinson Producer- Aaron Levinson.
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