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Moondog [Prestige]

Moondog [Prestige]

by Moondog Moondog


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By the standards of the mid-'50s, or indeed of any era, this was so far-out and uncommercial that it's difficult to believe it was even released. Moondog, by this time well known as a New York street musician, drives these pieces along with maraca and clava percussion, often in odd time signatures. The percussion lines are the backbone for unusual melodies, often Asian- or Japanese-inspired, with a movingly mournful (but not unappealing) quality. Washes of wind-like sounds and animal noises are often used to embellish the pieces. Bits of "Tree Trail" and "Frog Bog" even come close to exotica, but this ain't no Martin Denny (who, of course, was also using frog noises on record around this time); Moondog's music is much less frivolous in intention, and the round-like repetition that flavors all his work is present through most of this disc. To add to the unpredictability of the proceedings, there's a Japanese lullaby (sung by Moondog's wife Suzuko), a percussive duet between Moondog and tap dancer Ray Malone, tribal/Cuban drum passages, and a "Street Scene" track that mixes Moondog's drums and poetry with Manhattan traffic. All very enigmatic yet attention-holding stuff, ripe for discovery by new generations that will appreciate his defiantly idiosyncratic mix of styles and formats.

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Product Details

Release Date: 07/01/1991
Label: Ojc
UPC: 0025218174121
catalogNumber: 1741
Rank: 87438


  1. Caribea, sextet
  2. Lullaby, sextet
  3. Tree Trail, quintet
  4. Death, when you come to me, may you come to me swiftly; I would rather
  5. Big Cat, sextet
  6. Frog Bog, quintet
  7. To a Sea Horse, solo
  8. Dance Rehearsal
  9. Surf Session, in 3 parts, quartet
  10. Trees against the sky, fields of plenty, rivers to the sea: this, and m
  11. Tap Dance
  12. Oo Debut, solo
  13. Drum Suite
  14. Street Scene

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