Consumer Guide Album
Conjure: Conjure [American Clavé, 1984]
Ishmael Reed or no Ishmael Reed, to hear Taj Mahal, David Murray, and Allen Toussaint playing not alongside but with one another is really something. Thank Murray for his virtuosic atavism on the smartly paced blues side, and Mahal for his progressive heart on the more desultory jazz side. Thank Steve Swallow and Billy Hart for their humble shuffles. And then hail Ishmael Reed, whose pan-Afro-American modernism was the occasion of these miracles. Nothing like an oral tradition to make written words sing.