31 October 2005

Monday's mp3: Tromboney Throat-singing Blues

If you've been following along at home, you'll know I've had throat-singing on my mind of late with the passing of Paul Pena and the recent tour of Tyva Kyzy. Now comes a very different take on a throat-singing collaboration. Jazz trombonist Roswell Rudd, who in 2003 explored West African sounds with Toumani Diabate on the CD Malicool, has turned his attentions to the Mongolian Steppe.

A chance meeting in 2002 led to improvisational sessions betwee Rudd and two singers, Odsuren and Battuvshin Baldantseren. The liner notes of Blue Mongol point out that "the trombone derives from the same acoustical principles [as overtone singing]." So they explored the sounds, and in fall 2004 finished recording this album. Just released by Soundscape Records, its 13 tracks range from odd fusions like "Buryat Boogie" to the "American Round" of traditional US songs, to traditional songs Mongolian songs. Rudd's trombone may sound a little out of place at first, but the more you listen, the more it makes sense. Here's a fascinating, stripped down track of (apparently) improvisation between Baldantseren and Rudd - a direct conversation between trombone and throat.

Roswell Rudd & the Mongolian Buryat Band: "Four Mountains"

From the CD Blue Mongol
Buy the CD | Hear audio samples

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