October 26, 2009 – 4:05 am

After a hard day, you can unwind and peel a banana.

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

The Lost Chords In Europe [no label, 1CD]

Live at Dortoir des Moines, Abbaye de l’Epau, Le Mans, France, May 11, 2007 and broadcast on Jazz sur le Vif, France Musique, May 30, 2007. Ex FM stereo.

The Banana Quintet is a series of lazy afternoon themes played with trumpet, saxophone and piano taking turns to lead the quintet as they “peel away” the stress of modern living. This is mighty fine music in the vein of Kind Of Blue. Unlike Miles’ direction to set a new attitude for jazz, Bley just plays on the strengths, the melody and moodiness that was the foundation of Kind Of Blue.

Adding firepower to the Lost Chords quartet is young gun Paolu Fresu, the Italian trumpeter who has the same control as the man with the horn. Fresu is part of the Instabile Orchestra of Italy. His cool jazz styling was brought to Bley’s attention by Andy Sheppard. Indeed, it does seem like Bley’s Banana Quintet was written with that sound in mind.

There’s a romantic and idyllic air about the Banana’s. The first banana is all Fresu’s as he sets the tone. Andy Sheppard’s saxophone gets to play the second banana, so to speak, which is blues-based. You’ll find Ms Bley does a mean Beatles interpretation at the five-minute mark of the fourth banana with a chilling version of I Want You. Her big band drummer, Billy Drummond, fires up bananas’ three, four and five with precise, well-placed shots. Bassist Steve Swallow is never far away from the action.

This concert in Paris comes roughly two months before the quintet retired to La Pipe Sonne Studio at Pernes-les-Fontaines to record the gorgeous 2007 album The Lost Chords Find Paolo Fresu in mid-August. It took all of two days to finish the album and a day to mix. The synergy is all too palpable.

You can’t find a better laid-back show than this. All thanks to Cosmikd who shared this on the Dime, some time ago.
- Professor Red

Note: Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (these are high quality MP3s - sample rate of 192 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

The Banana Quintet
Track 01. One Banana (5:52m) (8.0MB)
Track 02. Two Banana (3:54m) (5.3MB)
Click here if you reside in the United States
Click here if you reside outside the United States
Track 03. Three Banana (11:22m) (15.6MB)
Click here if you reside in the United States
Click here if you reside outside the United States
Track 04. Four Banana (song breaks into The Beatles’ I Want You [She’s So Heavy] at the fifth minute) (6:14m) (9.0MB)
Track 05. Five Banana (9:49m) (13.4MB)
Track 06. One Banana More (1:55m) with DJ commentary introducing the final track. (2.6MB)
Track 07. Root (11:21m) (15.5MB)

Carla Bley - piano and compositions
Paolo Fresu - Flugelhorn trumpet
Andy Sheppard - tenor and soprano sax
Steve Swallow - bass
Billy Drummond - drums

The Lost Chords Find Paolo Fresu is perhaps the most descriptive album title ever. Released in 2007, it is Bley’s most accessible album in years and seeks to showcase the young Italian trumpeter of the title. The Banana Quintet is featured on this CD. Buy it here.

  1. 8 Responses to “BANANAS”

  2. Very nice. Relaxing. Isn’t this what Miles used to do before he went mad?

    By Timmy on Oct 26, 2009

  3. You can say what you want.Real music made by hand and brain is better than all the syntetic crap you can hear around the clock on the most radio stations.
    Thanks for this good sound !

    By Catman on Oct 26, 2009

  4. hey bigo, i got this and orchestra night. thanks! need to fix tags. put up more jazz and avant jazz shows.


    By Ed Saad on Oct 26, 2009

  5. Had the opportunity to listen to they two Carla Bley posts. I must say I only knew her from hearsaying, but it seemed interesting with some banana songs, so why not. And they are certainly very good, can certainly be recommended if you’re into jazz. So thanks a lot for an eye opener

    By Henning2804 on Nov 5, 2009

  6. HI,
    Great stuff! Thanks

    By David Bromberg on Aug 11, 2012

  7. Ha, you are using my bootleg artwork. Love it!! I lost this recording and the art i made for it shortly after i Downloaded it from Dime and then it disappeared from dime whenI tried to find it again! thanks for the reacquaintance with both the music and the artwork!

    By T. Rem on Jun 20, 2015

  8. track 4 seems missing. I know, it’s a stretch to ask at this late date…

    By T. Rem on Jun 20, 2015

  9. Hello T. Rem

    Thanks very much for the effort and the artwork. Kindly refresh the page and try again. Cheers.

    By bigozine2 on Jun 20, 2015

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