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26 Sep 2016

Bruce & Vlady “The Reality”1970 Prog Jazz released in Sweden label








Bruce & Vlady “The Reality”1970 Prog Jazz released in Sweden label
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Fantastic music! Like Hansson & Karlsson with soulful vocals. Highly recommended! Swedish only pressing ….
This is the first ever reissue of American Hammond player Bruce Powell and Polish drummer Wladyslaw Jagiello’s wonderful, unique record of hypnotic progressive jazz from 1970! …..
Going by the sleeve alone, it’s clear that this record has all the right ingredients: hypnotic artwork, enigmatic title, unusual Hammond and drums line-up… However, the album didn’t sell well upon its original 1970 released in Sweden, and has been long-forgotten since then. This is the first ever reissue of American Hammond player Bruce Powell and Polish drummerWladyslaw Jagiello’s wonderful, unique record of hypnotic progressive jazz. Its story is also told here for the first time, thanks to Powell himself: “I was introduced to trumpeter Ernie Englund. He told me he needed an organist who could read music and had his own instrument… he hired me to play with his big band at the Grande Hotel in Stockholm. That was December 1969. My Hammond B-3 was somehow damaged on the trip over and Ernie decided to send me back to the United States. My wife, however, had arrived two days after I got there, so I decided to stay in Stockholm and make a go of it on my own… I met Vlady one night at a rock club. He and I both were sitting in with another band. He liked the way I played and I liked him… We got hired for several engagements at [Klub Ernst]. A friend of Rune Wallebom [Svensk American Records co-owner] heard us one night and told him about our music… Rune came to hear us and loved it. He came up after the show and offered me a recording contract… I don’t remember the name of the studio but I do remember that we did four takes. After reviewing them all, we decided upon the ones that appear on the album. There are two more takes out there somewhere. I had the tapes from the sessions but they got lost over time… Not long after, Rune came to me with a sad face and told me his wife was divorcing him. She was co-owner of Svensk American Records and was dissolving the company. This happened just after the album was released; therefore it went no further. The promotion and distribution ceased. I never received any monies or royalties for my work… When my grandmother passed, I decided to return to the United States (September 1970). I lost track of Vlady and never was able to contact Rune about what happened to the album.” …by Forced Explosure……
When you come across a sleeve like this, you know the record kept inside has to be good. It has all the right ingredients: hypnotic artwork, enigmatic title, unusual Hammond and drums line-up… However, the album didn’t sell well when it originally came out in Sweden back in 1970 and has remained long forgotten since then. This reissue brings up the full story of this piece of hypnotic jazz and progressive music for first time thanks to one of its original authors: Mr Bruce Powell.“I had returned from an eight month engagement in Tokyo and decided to go back to Las Vegas, Nevada. While there, I was introduced to trumpeter Ernie Englund. He told me he needed an organist who could read music and had his own instrument. I said yes and he hired me to play with his big band at the Grande Hotel in Stockholm. That was December 1969.My Hammond B-3 was somehow damaged on the trip over and Ernie decided to send me back to the United States. My wife, however, had arrived two days after I got there, so I decided to stay in Stockholm and make a go of it on my own. I found someone called Bengt who repaired my Hammond organ.I met Vlady [Wladyslaw Jagiello, a leading Polish jazz drummer] one night at a rock club. He and I both were sitting in with another band. He liked the way I played and I liked him. We talked about doing something together and Bengt told us about a jazz club/restaurant (Klub Ernst), so Vlady and I approached the owner. We got hired for several engagements there.A friend of Rune Wallebom [Svensk American Records co-owner] heard us one night and told him about our music. One day Vlady and I had a concert to do in downtown Stockholm and Rune came to hear us and loved it. He came up after the show and offered me a recording contract. The deal was that I would record all my original music. He also said that if the album sold 20,000 copies in Sweden, it would then be promoted in England (under EMI/Columbia Records) and would also get us a booking at Ronnie Scott’s in London.I don’t remember the name of the studio but I do remember that we did four takes. After reviewing them all, we decided upon the ones that appear on the album. There are two more takes out there somewhere. I had the tapes from the sessions but they got lost over time… Vlady and I performed the album in Stockholm at the Gyllene Cirkeln. I had heard about this place and that such greats as Jack McDuff, Ornette Coleman and Eddie Harris had performed there. When I approached the owner, he said he had been booking groups for a two-night engagement. However, he liked our music so much that he signed us for 16 nights! It was a great success.Not long after, Rune came to me with a sad face and told me his wife was divorcing him. She was co-owner of Svensk American Records and was dissolving the company. This happened just after the album was released; therefore it went no further. The promotion and distribution ceased. I never received any monies or royalties for my work… When my grandmother passed, I decided to return to the United States (September 1970). I lost track of Vlady and never was able to contact Rune about what happened to the album.” ….
Imagine the scene in a Stockholm jazz club sometime in 1970. The Gyllene Cirkeln had been host to performers like Eddie Harris and Ornette Coleman (who recorded a pair of Blue Note albums there). Its owner normally booked artists for simply a two-night stand, but he was so impressed by one act that he booked them for 16 days straight. This group was an unusual duo: an American organist born in Waukegan, Illinois and a Polish drummer. Bruce Powell and Wladyslaw “Vlady” Jagiello recorded only one album, and Vampisoul’s essential reissue of The Reality has rescued this forgotten music from obscurity.

The album is a jazz-funk-R&B-rock hybrid as swirling and mesmerizing as its cover. Credited as Bruce and Vlady, the musicians are pictured on a background of concentric circles, separate but visually connected by these recurring lines much as their music goes in different directions yet is connected through an unlikely musical friendship.

Although the 50-minute album lists 10 track titles, the recording unfolds as a continuous suite. “Listen… we’re going to tell the people how reality begins,” Powell says as he introduces an album that is mostly instrumental, but comes off as a strange kind of jazz sermon with avant-garde testifying as well as swirling impassioned Hammond chords. Beats shift from a conventional swing to psychedelic power at the drop of a snare. No matter how wild the music gets, Jagiello maintains an effortlessly shifting pulse from rock to R&B to jazz and back again, keeping a consistent groove from the album’s more contemplative moments through its most intensely virtuosic outbursts.

Powell’s voice comes back at intervals throughout the album, which adds to the sense that he’s delivering an unusual sermon about reality. He quotes the Isley Brothers and James Brown: “Open up the door/ I’ll get it myself!” He waxes on soft drinks: “Even though I got Coca-Cola on my fingers the first time I’ll try again/ … They call that real, to me!”Near the end of the album, out of nowhere, he seems to place a drink order: “Cubes of sugar for me/ I like my coffee that way.” The spoken interludes feel like casual, tossed-off observances whose import ebbs and flows with the music from a duo that was completely in tune with each other. This is indeed reality, but a particularly concentrated form of it defined in keyboard swirls and driving beats.

The duo came together by accident. Powell was in Stockholm for a gig that fell through when his Hammond B-3 was damaged in transit on a cruise ship. Instead of returning home, Powell and his wife stayed in Sweden while he had his instrument repaired, and he looked for work on his own. At a rock club, Powell met Jagiello sitting in with another band. The pair hit if off musically and booked club dates that caught the attention of Rune Wallebom, co-owner of Svensk American Records. Wallebom promised that if they could sell 20,000 records in Sweden, he would get them wider distribution in England and a gig at Ronnie Scott’s famous London club. But after The Reality was released, the label owner announced that his wife and label co-owner was divorcing him. Svensk American dissolved, and Powell and Jagiello never saw any royalties from their album.

The duo recorded four takes for this sole studio album, and it reaches feverish improvisational heights. One can only imagine what the duo was capable of during their club residency. Powell left Stockholm in 1970 and never saw Jagiello again. The drummer mysterious circumstances in 2009. If Powell’s spoken word remarks and inspired playing occasionally seems church bound, it’s no accident.. Today he is musical director at a church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

An original copy of Bruce and Vlady’s album is currently available on Discogs for nearly $800, but Vampisoul’s CD reissue sounds fantastic, and presumably the vinyl edition is of the same quality. The only downside to this rediscovery is that there isn’t more of it. That’s The Reality, a fantastic musical document and a heightened way of life. ……
Tracklist
A1 Reality (Part I)
A2 Blue Variations
A3 Reality (Part II)
A4 Wild Enough
A5 Reality’s Monologue
B1 No Nuthin’ At All
B2 Prince Vlady (Part I)
B3 I Need You Now
B4 Prince Vlady (Part II)
B5 The Master 

johnkatsmc5, welcome music..