The story of Hasaan Ibn Ali continues to be written with Reaching For The Stars: Trios / Duos / Solos, taking a deeper look into his history and offering more answers for those who seek to unravel the mysteries of his music.
Throughout jazz history, few figures have left as interesting a mark as Hasaan Ibn Ali. His elusive, groundbreaking music has been the subject of intrigue and admiration for decades. Now, you are invited to once again journey into the enigmatic world of this legendary pianist with Reaching For The Stars: Trios / Duos / Solos.
The tale of Hasaan Ibn Ali's rediscovery and subsequent rise to prominence is one that reads like a jazz fairytale. In 1965, the Max Roach Trio Featuring The Legendary Hasaan album came out, instantly etching its name into the chronicles of jazz legend. The world was introduced to Ibn Ali's revolutionary playing and compositions. Yet, despite the accolades, his recorded opus was incomplete. Intriguingly, Atlantic Records recorded him later that year, only to shelve the resulting album, leaving it to gather dust in obscurity. For decades, it was believed lost to time. But in a miraculous turn of fate, tape copies of acetates breathed life back into this forgotten gem. It reemerged nearly half a century later, under the title Metaphysics: The Lost Atlantic Album. A critical sensation, this resurrection further solidified his, showcasing his innovative, exhilarating, and inventive playing.
Retrospect In Retirement Of Delay: The Solo Recordings followed, unearthing even more previously unissued performances. It was a testament to the enduring allure of Ibn Ali's artistry and the boundless treasures hidden within his oeuvre. Now, the story continues with Reaching For The Stars: Trios / Duos / Solos, a collection that looks deeper into the uncharted realms of his music. These eleven previously unreleased tracks present an array of collaborative and solo endeavors, shedding new light on the genius of this pianist. The Trios portion showcases Ibn Ali alongside remarkable talents like Henry Grimes and Kalil Madi, who've graced stages with jazz luminaries such as Thelonious Monk, McCoy Tyner, and Sonny Rollins. Six tracks, four of which appeared in their studio versions on The Max Roach Trio Featuring The Legendary Hasaan, offer a fresh perspective on familiar classics. But it doesn't stop there, the album also introduces three tracks featuring vocalist Muriel Gilliam, known as Muriel Winston. These timeless performances add yet another layer to Ibn Ali's work. Finally, we're treated to a pair of solo portraits that reveal the intricate, masterful artistry that defined his approach to the piano.
Curated for release by Grammy award-winning producer Cheryl Pawelski and ASCAP award-winning writer Alan Sukoenig, Reaching For The Stars comes accompanied by an insightful essay from pianist, composer, and writer Ethan Iverson. It's an essential companion that provides context to the musical treasures within. As with the previous Omnivore Hasaan Ibn Ali releases, it’s been painstakingly restored and mastered by engineer Michael Graves. The commitment to preserving the essence of Ibn Ali's work shines through in the audio quality of this collection.