Sidi Mansour

One of the most unexpected Fripp collaborations was the creation of Cheikha Rimittis “Sidi Mansour” album from 1994. An amazing blend of Middle East traditions meets Western rock.

Fronted by  Cheikha Remitti, a female 70 years old Algerian Raï singer, often referred to as the Grandmother of Raï, with East Bay Ray (Dead Kennedys) on rhythm guitar, Fripp on lead guitar, Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers) delivers some very very hot bass work throughout the album, all this on top of very crafted percussions and horns. All very talented put together to create a sound I have never heard on any other album.

“Sidi Mansour” was followed by a 1995 mini album: Cheikha [Unreleased Tracks From The Sidi Mansour Album]

Rimitti was one of the most influential singers in the development of the popular Algerian music style known as Rai. She was born in 1923 in French-controlled Algeria. She became an orphan at a young age and grew up living a hard life.

She joined a troupe of traditional Algerian musicians and learnt to sing and dance, and even though she was illiterate all her life, she created more than 200 songs. Mostly of a social realistic nature, about the hardness of poor people living, love, sex, alcohol ect. Her poetry forced her out of Algeria in the 1960’s, she spent most of the rest of her live in France. She died in Paris in 2006, aged 83.


Hawkins Encounters Webster

Jazz can be many things, and do many things to me as a listener. Today I have fund an example of Jazz as a Zen moment, filled with true beauty. When I listen to these tracks from   “Coleman Hawkins Encounters Ben Webster”, every stressful thought leaves me and I am filled with ease. My thought go back to late night / early mornings, wandering empty streets on my way home from great nights.

Coleman Hawkins Encounters Ben Webster is studio album recorded in 1957, on the Verve label. The band was :

Coleman Hawkins – tenor saxophone, Ben Webster – tenor saxophone, Oscar Peterson – piano, Herb Ellis – guitar, Ray Brown – double bass, Alvin Stoller – drums.

In the United Kingdom, the album was released with the title Blue Saxophones.

Hawkins was born in Missouri 1904, active from the early 1920’s to 1967. He was one of the first prominent Jazz musicians to play the tenor saxophone, and have been a major influence on many tenor saxophonists. Hawkins has played with a lot of famous Jazz musicians, far too many to mention here.



Stockholm & Pygmalion’s Ladder

“Stockholm” is a track from American band OSIs third studio album “Blood” from 2009.

The track features OSI members, guitarist/basist, Jim Matheos (Fates Warning) and keyboardist Kevin Moore (Chroma Key, Dream Theater), with the addition of drummer Gavin Harrison (Porcupine Tree, King Crimson) and vocals by Mikael Åkerfeldt (Opeth)

The Track was written by Matheos/Moore, lyrics by Åkerfeldt.

What I like about this particular track, is the buildup, melting of ambient almost electronic sound into a hard riff based metal toward the end.

Another nice example of melting ambient with elements from prog-metal, is Lunatic Soul, the solo project of Mariusz Duda, lead singer and creative force behind the Polish prog metal band Riverside. Lunatic Soul outputs in generally more calm than OSI’s, but there are hints of harder rock, here and there.

Pygmalion’s Ladder, from Lunatic Soul’s 2014 album, Walking On A Flashlight Beam

The John Paul Jones Story Part 6

In 2001 Jones released his 2nd solo album “The Thunderthief”, again  on Fripp’s DGM label. Again he produced the album, and played a lot of different instruments : vocals, 12-string bass guitars, bass, acoustic and electric guitars, mandolin, electric mandolin, piano, organ, synthesizer, Kyma, koto, autoharp, ukelele, harmonica. With Terl Bryant (Iona) on drums. Nick Beggs, Stick on two track, Adam Bomb/Robert Fripp – guitar solo on one track each.

John Paul Jones, with Robert Fripp (solo guitar).

The album is mostly is line with what was created on Zooma, maybe a bit lighter, partly because we have got vocals on this one, partly because the material might be just a tiny bit more easy to grasp. Again all in all a very varied album.

Jones was touring “The Thunderthief”, A trio with Nick Beggs and  Terl Bryant, opening for King Crimson.


With his impressive solo albums Jones has proven ready to experiment and explore new territories, definitely showing him as the most avant-grade and experimental Zeppelin member, and a very diverse and skilled musician. “The Thunderthief” was Jones last solo album so far, but it is not the end of his story.








Contributions by Robert (part III)

Ronnie Urini

In 1984 Fripp played mellotron on Austrian new wave/postpunk band “Ronnie Urini & die letzten Poeten” 7″ single 1001 Nacht.

Robert Fripp married English singer and actress Toyah Ann Willcox in 1986, so it would be only natural that he would appear on some of her work. That happened for the first time on her second solo album Desire from 1987  (not counting albums she had already done with her band “Toyah”), Fripp co-wrote and played guitar on the title track. Fripp and Toyah have worked together many times since then.

“Fun Factory” is a single by English Punk band “The Damned”, released in 1990. “Fun Factory”, was recorded back in 1982 but was not released because Damned’s record company Bronze Records went bankrupt in 1983. The track was not on a “Damned” album, but has been issued on several compilations. Fripp plays Guitar on the track.




Emilie Mayer – Classical female composers – Part five

Emilie Luise Friderica Mayer 1812-1883. Was born in Friedland, in the north-eastern part of Germany. She began her serious music studies relative late, when she moved to Stettin (now Szczecin, Poland) in 1841, and started to study composition with Carl Loewe a very popular composer and opera singer in Stettin at the time.

In 1847, after the premiere of her first two symphonies, she moved to Berlin to continue her studies. Once in Berlin, she studied fugue and double counterpoint with Adolph Bernhard Marx, music theorist, professor of music at Berlin University and later one of the founders of the Berlin Stern conservatory, and instrumentation with musical conductor and composer Wilhelm Wieprecht, famous for his compositions of military music.

In 1850, Wieprecht led his orchestra in a concert at the Royal Theatre exclusively presenting compositions by Emilie Mayer. With critical and popular acclaim, she continued composing Works for most of her lifetime.

The list of her work is long with 8 Symphonies, 7 Overtures, 1 Opera, 1 Piano Concert and numerous piano solo pieces, violin sonates , cello sonates, piano trios and quartet, string quartet and quintets ect.

Her 5. and 8. Symphonie and her 5. and 7. Overture is presumably lost. 

The John Paul Jones Story Part 5

In 1994 Jones produced and co wrote most af the material for The Sporting Life, an album by : “ Diamanda Galás with John Paul Jones”. Galas is a female American vocalist, composer, and pianist/organist. Galás has a 4 octave vocal range, and a very avant-grade vocal style, not easy for the first time listener.

After producing a debut album by Elephant Ride in 1995, Jones started writing material for a solo album, he got signed with Robert Fripp’s DGM label, recordings began in 1998 and the album “ZOOMA” was released in 1999. The album is a very diverse mix of styles, and as his first solo effort, represents well all the different music interests of Jones, with a hint of Zep here and there.

Jones produced the album, and played : bass guitar, double bass, keyboards, guitars, electric mandola, Kyma (some sort of music programming device beyond my understandings)

The recording band was :  Pete Thomas – drums (Elvis Costello), Paul Leary – lead guitars (Butthole Surfers) Trey Gunn – rhythm guitar, Warr guitar (King Crimson) and Denny Fongheiser – djembe, drums, the album was all instrumental.

The John Paul Jones Story Part 4

In 1988 John Paul Jones created a track for Brian Eno’s “MUSIC FOR FILMS III” an album that contains ambient tracks from different artists (Daniel Lanois, Michael Brook, Harold Budd ect.), In 1992 Jones plays Piano on a track from Eno’s “Nerve Net.”

Jones with Eno, Fripp, and others on Nerve Net.

In late 1990, Jones produced, engineered, and performed most instruments, on his daughter Jacinda Jones album, recorded at Peter Gabriel’s Real World Studio, but the album was never released. In 1992 Jones performed on a track from Peter Gabriel’s album US.

Jones : surdu, bass, keyboards. From “US”

Also in 1992 Jones made all the orchestral arrangements for R.E.M.’s  “Automatic for the People”, and produced alternative rock band Butthole Surfers “Independent Worm Saloon”.

Jones : Bass on Butthole Surfers “The Ballad of Naked Man”

The John Paul Jones Story, Part 3

During his time in Led Zeppelin, John Paul Jones produced, wrote most of the material, and played keyboards, bass guitar, and guitars on Madeline Bell’s 1973 album “Comin’ Atcha”. A very different music, from what Jones was doing with Zeppelin. Madeline is an American born Soul/R&B/Jazz singer, active since the early 60’s.

“Comin’ Atcha” (Jones, Bell)

In 1984 Jones recorded a soundtrack album for movie director Michael Winner’s “Scream for Help”, again working with Madeline Bell on some tracks. Yes vocalist Jon Anderson also performs on the album.

“Christie” (Jones) with Jon Anderson

Jones was given the task by suggestion of Jimmy Page, who had produced written and performed on Michael Winner’s previous film soundtrack. Page also co-wrote one track on “Scream for Help” and played guitar on two.

“Crackback”  (Jones,Page)

The John Paul Jones Story, Part 2

If you want to read the first part

John Paul Jones is best known playing Bass and Keybords in Led Zeppelin, but he is a true  multi-instrumentalist, playing a wide range of instruments: harp, double bass, varius types of mandolin, guitar, recorder, koto, lap steel guitar, continuum, autoharp, ukulele, sitar, keyboard guitar, banjo, saxophone, flute, viola, cello, violin, harmonica, pedal steel guitar.

John Paul plays mandolin on Zeppelins “That’s the Way” from 1970.

On Led Zeppelins “Kashmir” John Paul arranged session players for the string and horn sections, but he also used the mellotron, which was part of making “Kashmir” one of the few Zeppelin tracks, in what you might call the progressive rock genre.

John Paul : bass guitar, mellotron, and the arrangement of strings and horn, on Zeppelins “Kashmir” recorded 1974

On what was to become Led Zeppelin’s last album “In Through the Out Door” Jones took a more active part in songwriting, he had been co-writing tracks before, but it was the first album, where some songs was written only by Jones and Plant, Page and Bonham was less active, most likely due to drug and alcohol addictions.

South Bound Saurez (Jones/Plant) John Paul Jones : bass guitar, “honky-tonk” piano

Digging Deeper into Music

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