Daily jazz blog, Marlbank

Belonging band double bass icon of European jazz Palle Danielsson - who made history with Keith Jarrett - has died at the age of 77

Sad to hear of the death of Swedish jazz bassist Palle Danielsson who changed jazz history as a member of the groundbreaking 1970s era Keith Jarrett European Quartet, also known as the Belonging band after one of its seminal albums. Swedish Radio …

Published: 20 May 2024. Updated: 25 days.

PD

Sad to hear of the death of Swedish jazz bassist Palle Danielsson who changed jazz history as a member of the groundbreaking 1970s era Keith Jarrett European Quartet, also known as the Belonging band after one of its seminal albums. Swedish Radio reports that Danielsson died on 18 May. Known for his extraordinary tonal command and ability to connect with the listener, along with Jarrett, saxophonist Jan Garbarek and drummer Jon Christensen the quartet entered the intimate emotional consciousness of many jazz listeners the world over with Belonging, and My Song among other albums known for their lyrical beauty and extraordinary emotional and technical resource.

Danielsson's extensive discography also included key albums with Polish trumpeter Tomasz Stańko on such classics as 1990s Komeda homage, Litania. The bassist was born in Stockholm and initially trained on the violin, switching to the double bass in his early teens. He studied at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm.

Belonging is a touchstone of 1970s jazz and hugely influential since frequently praised for its lyrical beauty and cohesive interplay among the musicians. Key work of Danielsson's also included appearances on albums by Charles Lloyd, Michel Petrucciani, John Taylor and Enrico Rava - he appears on the Italian icon Rava's classic The Pilgrim and the Stars for instance.

The Belonging Band records have remained favourites of mine as too are so many other Danielsson contributions to some of the crown jewels of ECM recordings he participated in likewise. And I well remember the impact of Sleeper much later in 2012 when it eventually was released. Recording in 1974-1979 whether in the studio in Oslo or live in New York and Tokyo, Personal Mountains (not released during the band’s fairly brief existence), Sleeper (again unissued during their group lifespan) and Nude Ants also mean so much to so many. On a personal note I met Danielsson just the once, around the time of the release of Litania in 1997 along with record company personnel over a meal in Swiss Cottage before going down to Camden to hear the band at the Jazz Cafe. He was a charming, very erudite and kind person from what I recall of that memorable first and last encounter. SG

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Track of the week: Onwards and Upwards by Bag of Bones issued by 577 ****

Track of the week for 20-26 May Any old iron - tones for all souls: Fire up this. A case of where there's a Will there's so often a way: drawn from No One Gets Saved to be issued by avant label 577 on 31 May, what the acoustic quartet Bag of Bones …

Published: 20 May 2024. Updated: 33 days.

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Track of the week for 20-26 May

Any old iron - tones for all souls: Fire up this. A case of where there's a Will there's so often a way: drawn from No One Gets Saved to be issued by avant label 577 on 31 May, what the acoustic quartet Bag of Bones do here isn't remotely avant at all but hits the spot nevertheless - it shows the paucity of such catch-all but sometimes useful broad brushstroke terms. If you know what 577 usually release you'll surely agree their modus operandi is typically pretty far out, man. So bearing this in mind, what goes down first instead making a slight paradigm shift towards the bliss of sheer groove without selling out in any way is catapulted into the eardrums courtesy of a hugely reverberant descending tiny bass ostinato from Oli Hayhurst, best known for his work with Pharoah Sanders.

And then wait for it - after a little cue-ing up from Will Glaser - the crucial bit if micro listening for the tipping point future ''breakbeat'' of the whole track - and some tasteful jabbing at the piano there's huge very chunky soloing from the QOW Trio saxist, notable bejazzed Galwegian Riley Stone-Lonergan who bounces off the from-then-on fairly low profile biding his time canny piano lines from the Radiohead loving Rick Simpson. Works on every level, exit music to chill on. Pulsates all the way through.

Will Glaser pictured above - photo: marlbank - in what was the Dalston domain of the much missed Derek downstairs at the Vortex in 2021