CPCD-021 Rick Countryman:The First Bird


"the first bird", on Chap Chap Records, Japan (CPCD-021) is a solo work on alto sax from Rick Countryman, recorded in 2021 in the Philippines.

The art of JÖrg Wand is credited for inspiration and direction, as the music evolved from concepts and work with his fractal videos.

There is a clear relationship between his art and this music, as well as his contributions to the cover art and titling the CD and the tracks.


You could call it Fractal Jazz...


album credits: Recorded 2021, May 16, 17, 23 & June 6 in the Philippines





販売価格 ¥2,500(税込)


Jazz A Parisのレヴューはこちら

Jazz Tokyoのレヴューはこちら




Featuring Rick Countryman on solo alto sax. Over the past few years, American saxist currently living in the Philippines, Rick Countryman, has been involved with nearly a dozen CD’s of free music from duos, trios & quartets most of which include legendary Japanese drummer Sabu Toyozumi. We’ve reviewed each of these discs and I’ve become quite fond of Mr. Countryman’s consistently spirited playing. As far as I know, this is Rick Countryman’s first solo sax disc. This disc is compiled from four sessions in the Philippines from May & June of this year (2021). This disc sounds like a studio effort, the sound is dry and warm. Countryman has a strong, thoughtful tone, closer to a tenor than an alto without much squeaking or squawking. Countryman takes his time, playing long liner but rarely bending notes too far. There is something striking going on here, a certain lyric quality at the center of the storm. Countryman often takes a lick and then plays around with it, playing a series of lines in which a central lick will be stretched out, carefully bending certain notes, repeating certain lines and then twisting the notes that lead up to the lick or lines of notes that he started with. There is a solemn quality at the center hear with just occasional notes which are bent or carefully stretched. Instead the usual free/jazz frenetics that most sax extremists deal in, we get a more relaxed, mature program that goes down much easier than a constant stream of bent-note calisthenics. The front and back cover here are also somewhat psychedelic and also without being too far out.


 Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG







the first bird

Rick countryman



 ちゃぷちゃぷレコードからリリースされたリック・カントリーマンの9番目のアルバムは、アルト・サックスのソロによるものであり、全部で10曲の小品が並ぶ。アルバム・タイトルにもなっている1曲目のThe first bird”を、「火の鳥」、あるいは鳳凰のイメージを思い浮かべながら聴いた。速めのテンポでしなやかに上へ下へと駆け巡るパッセージには、たしかに鳥のイメージはぴったりかも知れない。この曲のしなやかさは、2曲目以降でよりさまざまな様態へと敷衍されて行く。テンポや表情の変化が心地良い。5曲目の“WoodTopia”は、テナー・サックス的な音域で一転してゆっくりなテンポで始まるが、中盤以降でしなやかな上下行パッセージが駆け巡るようになる。6曲目の“Emerald“の冒頭は5曲目と同質性を持っているものの、リリカルさが加わる。しかし、やがて動きが出て来る。7曲目の“What???If!!!”の冒頭は実にポエティックなモノローグで始まり、意外性のある展開を見せる。私見ではこの曲が最も好みである。8曲目(“DeepStyle is”)以降は、7曲目を踏まえた展開になっているようだ。ヴァリエーション的要素を含んだ小品の集まりとも、一種の緩い組曲とも言える無伴奏アルバムである。



(小森俊明 作曲家/ピアニスト)