Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Hal Russell
NRG Ensemble
"Linda Jazz Princess"

Hal Russell NRG Ensemble
Hal Russell NRG Ensemble
(Nessa Records, 1981)

Today's piece is from the debut album by the NRG Ensemble. Sure, on the cover it says Hal Russell NRG Ensemble, but I always think of them simply as the NRG Ensemble. I guess part of that is due to the fact that they dropped the "Hal Russell" part of the name when Ken Vandermark took over as leader after Hal's death in 1992. Then again, all the albums were credited to the Hal Russell NRG Ensemble prior to that.


Wikipedia says the NRG Ensemble "could be broadly described as post-bop," and I'll agree, as I'm just terrible at discerning the various bops: be, hard, and post. It's all jazz to me. But it's not Greek, as they were from Chicago. They also could go pretty far into ferocious free abandon, when they felt like it. I like that, 'cause I like noisy stuff, man. I have no idea who Linda is, but Hal must've had a thing for her, as there's also a fine tune called "Linda's Rock Vamp," which first appeared either as a bonus track on the CD version of their third album (of nine), 1984's Conserving NRG, or their fifth album, 1992's The Finnish/Swiss Tour. I have no idea when the CD version of the former was released. So sue me. Or don't. Actually, no, please don't.

4 biased opinions:

Biki Honko said...

Way to free form for me. My mind is much to lineal to enjoy free form. How long did i listen! Well! I feel quite proud that i made it all of 3 minutes! Whoo-hoo!

dolphy said...

Linda "jazz princess" was a jazz deejay for Wnur in Evanston which was the radio station for Northwestern college. She was active on the jazz scene in the late 70's and earlier 80's then dropped out. I don't know whatever happened to her. She was a big fan/promoter of Hal Russell's group.

Lightning Baltimore said...

Cool! Thanks for the info!

Anonymous said...

FYI: after working as jazz host on Chicago Public Radio, she left jazz industry to attend University of Chicago, then earned a Ph.D from Harvard in 2002.