Graham Reid | | 1 min read
In the late Eighties the saxophonist/multi-instrumentalist Jim Langabeer helmed the innovative jazz group Superbrew which, as I noted in my piece about the 2010 CD reissue of their '87 Africa Aroha album, "was jazz which also possessed that conspicuously absent ingredient in contemporary forms: fun.
"Africa Aroha includes their take on Nock’s sprightly In Out and Around; Dollar Brand’s Soweto-groove Namibia; Coltrane’s Afro Blue; and Young’s Agbekor, a Afrobeat/Manu Dibango-soul makossa exploration reaching towards Ornette Coleman.
"And in the final track, Langabeer’s restful Aroha, they invented a kind of Ellington’n’Pacific soul".
When that album -- their sole recording unfortunately -- was given that reissue, I took it upon myself to create a piece of art which referenced the album cover but also added a more obvious Maori twist of my own.
This was it and Jim -- who died in January 2022 -- wrote me a generous note saying they should have used my art for the cover of the reissue.
Jim gets a few mentions at Elsewhere, notably in what I wrote about the magazine Passages: The Magazine of Jazz and Elsewhere which I created and edited, and in which Jim was a contributor.
He was a wonderful man who I never saw without a smile and a glow of optimism.
The article this illustrated is here.
For other Art by Elsewhere go here.