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CD Review: Creative Music Studio Archive Selections Vol. 1 

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Co-established by Karl Berger, Ingrid Sertso, and Ornette Coleman, Woodstock's Creative Music Studio thrived from 1971 through 1984 as a primary center for the study and practice of contemporary jazz and world-fusion music. During its golden run, CMS hosted retreats conducted by the music's masters (Cecil Taylor, Don Cherry, Charlie Haden) and inspired ranks of next-generation greats. The center also regularly presented concerts and sessions that were preserved on the thousands of hours of tape now filling the CMS archives. A few years back, CMS's parent organization began digitizing these long-lost performances, several of which appear on this three-CD set.

The title may cause some confusion: A similarly named single-disc compilation was released in a limited edition in 2009; this set reprises its tracks by the David Izenzon Trio (with Berger on piano and vocals by Sertso) and Foday Suso's Mandingo Griot Society (featuring percussionists Hamid Drake and Adam Rudolph). The program's mind-expanding sessions are organized into small groups (the Ed Blackwell/Charles Brackeen, Frederic Rzweski/Ursuala Oppens, and Leroy Jenkins/James Emery duos), orchestral (Olu Dara, Oliver Lake, and Roscoe Mitchell leading the CMS Orchestra), and world music (Ismet Siral, Nana Vasconcelos), offering essential evidence of one of modern jazz's crucial, cross-pollinating crossroads while forming an indispensable document of Hudson Valley musical history. Archive Selections, Vol. 1 is an enticing taste of the tip of the mountain that looms in the CMS vaults—here's looking forward to Vol. 2. Innova.mu.

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  • The first volume of CMS archive selections.

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