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Motor City Musicians On The Move New Stars Of 1976

Motor City Musicians On The Move New Stars Of 1976 image Motor City Musicians On The Move New Stars Of 1976 image
Parent Issue
Day
31
Month
December
Year
1975
OCR Text

By JOHN SINCLAIR & BILL ADLER Detroit lias long been .1 ho.tbed of emergjng musical talent which lias gone on from ïts Motor City origins to qiake a mark on the national and international musie scène, l-'rom McKinney'sCotton Pickers and the Jean Goldkette Orcliestra in the 20's; tlirough the bebop revolution ut' the.40 and 50's whicb contributed Milt Jackson, Lucky Thompson. the Jones brothcrs (Hank,Thad and Elvin), Barry Marris. Yusef Lateef. Donald Byrd, Pepper Adams, Curtís Fuller. Paul Chambers, Doug Watkins. and a liost of Ktliers; through the rhythni & blues period of the 50's and 60's which mve the world Little Willie John, Hank Ballard & The Midnighters, John Lee Hooker. Wilson Pickett. Smokey Robinson, Marvin (aye. the Supremes, the Temptations, the Four Tops, Stevie Wonder, Martha Reeves, the Spinners, the Dramatics, Jackie Wilson, aml scores of others; to the rock & roll heyday of the niiddle & late sixties which olïereil Mitcli Ryder A and the Detroit Wheels, Bob Seger, Ted Nugent, thé MC-5, Alice Cooper, Catfish Hodge, M Rare Eaith, and numerous of others the Detroit pedigree s a long and splendid une. 1 Now. in the middle of the wventies, the Motor City continúes to produce briHiant yoiing musicians and performers who reach oui beyond the immediate community to ï enter the lives of people all over the countr) snd the world with theii Detioit-bred music. I he artists we have chosen to feature 111 tliis modest aiticle are only two peoples' 1 ' view of the crearn of the erop; it' yon talked to people on the set, in the joints and nightjj ' clubs andTrecording studios around town, you'd pet two or three times as many more J suggestions, and you'd do well to Follow up on all of them. ,i we hope to do in the months to come, lor now. however, we offer a handful of New Stais of 1476 foi ï [ your considera t ion: musici. nis who have already beiiun to draw attenuon and who can j gel over in a big -with a lew in 1976. Sonie of them have been around j a long time already, scuffling over years to get theii trips togethei, while othéra are j . relatively neu to the world of professional music. All of them denumd your close attenj , Ltion.and they'll probabry get it within the next 12 months, j . r4K&&J&'kr Uti&Z&&ï&S z&z&$s3r.. : "iMíí'' L53& 55 gg2áí&3& SfgSíí 5 ov4 r íÍÉSSSl#y mmy JÉtlyf&v 'mmmms msÊSi .♦2LSw5fcCS. tiii 'smm %,, o„ '',.,, 'ÏSL%, VirlA, V. m?uk mmsk :38SSÖ8$S iïZ&&$S$&ï& mmmm 4yLÑ&!$&é$ 4V ?m&3&& Hg&L 'c,;, t)rí C4w%; A IVA,. . %: t 'Vc ■ TOBE " f A very solid yet extremely ble combinaiion of Detroit music veterans " which lias never stopped developing in its four or tive-year lifespan, the current Tribe line-up f could easily be subtitled 'The Motor City Dream Band." A fully cooperative unit now captained (ïnostly ' for business purposes) by international trumpet star Marcus f Belgrave. the t'ivsi choice of Charles Mingus and a Ray Charles f Band alumnus as well, Tribe comprises six of the tip-top Detroit ] jazz players of the past fifteen years: Belgrave on trumpet and ' gelhom; Wendell Harrison. tenor saxophone and time: Phil Ranelin. iromlione; tlie great Harold McKinney , piano and electric piano; Roderick Hicks. bass; and Bud Spangler, drums. Belgrave. Harrison, Ranelin, continued n page New Stars of 76 TRIBE continuad from page 13 McKinney, and Hicks alKcontribute eompositions and arrangements (o Tribe's mladblowing book, whicli ranges from -straight - oul R&U to super-funk to jazz irom the entire spectrum of modern i ni pro visa t ional music. rooted in bebop and stretching out to tomorrow. Spangier, well-known tbr liis radio work wilh WDET-FM. is just what the band needed on drums, holding everyttifrig together without holding anybody back trom travelling in any direction the spirit will take them. Aheady gainjng heavy notoriety thioughout southeasfefn Michigan t'or U's smaahing performances in concerts and in clubs this band plays everywhere! Tribe finatly has all ts personnel, music and performance problems taken care of, and nothing hut the traditional blindness of most music industry rnoguls should slop them Trom göing over the top in '76. RALPHE ARMSTRONG recently with Frank Zappa and the Moth-ers of Invention. l.t all began wlien Ralphe's t'aihei . a blues violin player. built Ralphe'an acoustic bass and started ui teach him huw to play it. Ilis instruction coniinued at Barbour Jr. High under Alfred Hickman. an alumnus of Duke Ellington's band and the fust black teachei in the Detroil l'ublic School system. Ralphe later started going to Cass Tech but lost a full year due to illness. It was during this time. when lie "couldn't do any thing, but play imisic'" that Ralphe says he gol his chops together. He playecl "alley music" with Mad l)og and the Pups in 1969 and got the cali to work with the Miracles in Il)70. This was tollowed by a sojourn with The Drama tics. When the lust Mahavishnu Orchestra bioke np in 1973, Ralphe was the man McLaughlin wanted on bass. The young bassist was faceil, at that point.wiih the di..ying dilemma of choosing bet ween tbc gig with the new Mahavishnu Orchestra or one with Santana. He went with John. Ralphe is currently flush with severa! 1 options including un offer [o w.ork as a part ot'Jeff Beck's noxi gnnip. In the meantime lie's planning liis t'irst solo album which will feature, amotig othefs, lus fïiend Norma Bell. drummer Michael Walden, and keyboardist Jan Hammer. He's also taken nis fust big step into the international limelight. The Mahavishnu's next single release, "Planetary Citizen," is written and sung by one R. Armstrong. MICHAEL HENDERSON ment vviih Stevie in ll)70 at New York's (opacaban;! dun Michael. who ""had ne-ver listened to any jazz records," was asked by Miles Davis to join bisgröup. Incred ibly. Michael turoed him down cold. it wasn'1 uniil monrjis later, as Miles continued to reassure him that "we'll play the type of music.twu want to play." that Michael assented. Five years later Michael thuis that Miles" music continúes to challenge him, although t h is still-young man ( 24) has hls nimble Fingers in any number of other pies. He wiote and sings on Norman Connors' current smash hit "Valentine Love." He recent ly produced an as-yetunreleased LP lor Santana's drummer Mike Shreve. And yoifllfind that Michael wiote and produced a-couple of tunes on the Dramatics' latest ABC LP: "Dramatic's Theme""Treat Me Like A Man" and "Just Shopping." What's more, he plays on altoist Gary Bartz's latest, "The Shadow Do" and contributed his own "Make Me Feel Better" to the album. And the sunny future'.' Well. for one thing. look fot lots of tlus 1 ast Side kid on Norman Connors' soon-to-be-released "Starship." which includes anoihei vocal effort with Jean Carn, "We Both Need Each Other." And sur.ely ll)7o wil) be the year that sees multi-talented Michael's first "solo" effort. Watch for it. Plwtos ofNonrta Bell. Qtrolyu Crawforü mij Ralphe Amistrimg by Barbara U'cinberg. l'liotos of l.a I 'erna Mason. Lyman It', 'oilanl iml Mafcus Belgrave by l.cni Sinclair. Photo of Miclnni Henderson by Derryck Fort.