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Phillips, Barre

Thirty Years In Between [2 CDs]

Phillips, Barre: Thirty Years In Between [2 CDs] (Victo)

The title to be taken literally, these two solo concerts recorded in Canada by French-based US bassist Barre Phillips, the first recorded at Vancouver Western Front in 1989, the 2nd from the 35th International Festival Music Festival of Victoriaville in 2019, both exemplary concerts showing his masterful skills and ability to captivate then and now.

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product information:

UPC: 777405013224

Label: Victo
Catalog ID: CD 132 / 08
Squidco Product Code: 29361

Format: 2 CDs
Condition: New
Released: 2020
Country: Canada
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold 3 Panels
CD 1 recorded at the 35th International Festival Music Festival of Victoriaville, May 17, 2019, by Bernard Grenon.

CD 2 recorded at the Western Front in Vancouver, Canada, on May 12th, 1989, by Iain Macanulty and Doug Gough.


Barre Phillips-double bass

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Artist Biographies:

"Barre Phillips (born October 27, 1934 in San Francisco, California) is a jazz bassist. A professional musician since 1960, he migrated to New York City in 1962, then to Europe in 1967.[1] Since 1972 he has been based in southern France where in 2014 founded the European Improvisation Center

He studied briefly in 1959 with S. Charles Siani, Assistant Principal Bassist with the San Francisco Symphony During the 1960s he recorded with (among others) Eric Dolphy, Jimmy Giuffre, Archie Shepp, Peter Nero, Attila Zoller, Lee Konitz and Marion Brown.[1]

Phillips' 1968 recording of solo bass improvisations, issued as Journal Violone in the USA, Unaccompanied Barre in England, and Basse Barre in France, is generally credited as the first solo bass record. A 1971 record with Dave Holland, Music from Two Basses, was probably the first record of improvised double bass duets.[2]

In the 1970s he was a member of the well-regarded and influential group The Trio with saxophonist John Surman and drummer Stu Martin.[1] In the 1980s and 1990s he played regularly with the London Jazz Composers Orchestra led by fellow bassist Barry Guy. He worked on soundtracks of the motion pictures Merry-Go-Round (1981), Naked Lunch (1991, together with Ornette Coleman) and Alles was baumelt, bringt Glück! (2013).[3]

He has also worked with (among many others) bassists Peter Kowald and Joëlle Léandre, guitarist Derek Bailey, clarinetists Theo Jörgensmann and Aurélien Besnard, saxophonists Peter Brötzmann, Evan Parker and Joe Maneri, and pianist Paul Bley.

Barre is the father of rock guitarist Jay Crawford from the band Bomb, of the bassist Dave Phillips and of singer Claudia Phillips, who was a one-hit wonder in France in 1987 with "Quel souci La Boétie". "

-Wikipedia (

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track listing:


1. Ahoy! 4:04

2. You There, On The Hill 8:44

3. A Quake's A Comin! 7:05

4. What To Do What To Do? 5:19

5. Abate? Arise? 6:56

6. How Long How Long? 8:05

7. A New Take 7:33


1. Camouflage 16:23

2. Covered 10:14

3. Twist and Parry 8:33

4. No Exclusion 6:09

5. You and Me 6:30

6. Around Again 7:24
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"That distinguished history at once evaporates into and illuminates the inspiring presence of these two Phillips performances, another leap in time, linking the 1989 concert Camouflage, a then state-of-the-art account of bass possibilities, to Ahoy! a voyager's greeting shouted across time. It documents Phillips' appearance on the stage of Victoriaville's Colisee in May 2019, a slight and almost spectral presence standing once again with the singular bulk of his bass.

But Phillips is one of the few true masters, at one with the nuances of the instrument, one who understands that amidst its woods and metals, the essential components are air and form and time, projection, shape and resonance. Before such magisterial sound, words become silly putty: there is more air by volume than any other element in the bass. In a symphony orchestra, that air would match tympani or tuba. Water? If it begins with a shouted "Ahoy," it's forcefully evident in "Abate, Arise," from its initial thundering abyss to its turbine rhythms. Phillips' bass, always a bass, is intimate double to an exalted musical consciousness, but personal orchestra as well, from vast hand drum to kora and even shakuhachi, or narrative, a Melville-like Odyssey in which bow ultimately becomes bowsprit, spy glass in stringy rigging, notes as Noah's ark doves launched in landward hopes — sounds of cool flicker fire and exotic earth song."-Stuart Broomer, March 2020

This album has been reviewed on our magazine:

The Squid
The Squid's Ear!
Related Categories of Interest:


Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
Solo Artist Recordings
West Coast/Pacific US Jazz
New in Improvised Music
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