Ahmed Abdullah

Actual Proof

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Trumpeter Ahmed Abdullah has a sort of underground cult following, stemming in part from infrequent recordings. This is only his seventh recording, and it is with a group he calls "Nam," which consists of the blues-drenched baritone saxophonist Alex Harding plus the truncated rhythm section of bassist Masa Kamaguchi and drummer Jimmy Weinstein. Abdullah is not so much a radical interpreter as an individualist with an old-time approach to the trumpet applied to modern harmonics. He growls, "gets down, " and often sticks to a blues aesthetic, yet he also incorporates a style that hearkens to early Ornette. The choice of tunes is varied: an obscure Sun Ra tune, Coltrane's "Naima," Gunter Hampel's "Serenade for Marion Brown," and several pieces written or arranged by Harding or Abdullah. Much of the CD amounts to almost a highly effective blowing session, with the horns taking lengthy solos.

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