Boulders and Mountains
Mark Kramer Trio
BOULDERS AND MOUNTAINS (in memory of drummer FREDDIE WAITS [1943-1989]) Personnel: Eddie Gomez (bass) | Freddie Waits, Joe Chambers, John Mosemann (drums) | Mark Kramer (piano.)
Recorded in the studio or in live performance relatively early in Mark's music career [1985-89] these selections represent only 8 (out of hundreds) of his original compositions, That these works of that period were recorded at all is the only reason they are included here; not because they are any more or less distinctive than the others not included (Scores more hitherto unreleased original compositions have now been recorded over the years and some are presented in other sections of this website for download. [see categorized Tracks] In fact, because of Kramer's early decision to marginalize his originals (in favor of interpreting standard material), only a fraction of Kramer's originals have been recorded.
Jazz musicians are generally faced with two colossal artistic demands: 1) identifying their own voice, and 2) a life-long development of all they discover These demands are generally colored with commercial factors. This is a tortuous journey which is compared here to that of Sisyphus: the strong-willed politically incorrect trickster, who was banished by Zeus to roll a huge boulder up a steep mountain for eternity. Early on, and no matter how close Sisyphus approached the top, the boulder would prove too heavy for him to hoist it over onto the top's plateau. Thus he and the boulder would always roll down to the bottom of the mountain. This required countless new "beginnings." However, over the ages, Sisyphus became stronger: physically mentally, and emotionally. Sisyphus finally theorizes that his failure to scale the top is not due to his lack of strength. On one trip up, suspicious, he raises the boulder, and peers around it, seeing and feeling someone pushing back down on the boulder. Next trip, about 10 feet from the top, he raises the boulder high with one hand; with the other, he throws the pebble to the side and over the top of the Mountain. He sees another figure - his nemesis - scampering off, distracted by the small pebble. Sisyphus now is able to roll the boulder easily onto the summit. He finds, though, another mountain to scale. The means are the rewards, and the means provide an unimpeded opening for an extraordinary grace that can be transformative for those who persist in the ordeal.
This is likely the last recording of drummer Freddie Waits, a singular talent.. This collection is also dedicated — Dean Leavitt -- a true jazz fan and musician who introduced Kramer to jazz piano, and specifically the Bill Evans Trio. Dean died as a very young man. "One for Dean" was written for him.
CRED1TS Tracks (1,4,6): Producer/Engineer Jeff Bernstein/ Cynthia Daniels. Tracks (2,3,5,7,8) Co-producers/Mark Kramer and Eddie Gomez / Engineer; Mark Kramer Tracks (1,4,6) Recorded at Waterworks Studio, NY NY, ; Mixed at Sigma Sound, Phila., PA. by John Anthony Tracks (2,3,5,7,8: live in concert [1991,1994] All re-mastered 2008 by Mark Kramer at Platinum Seven Studios (Fort Washington, Pa.) Piano: Mark Kramer Bass; Eddie Gomez, Drums: Freddie Waits (T1,4,6), Joe Chambers (T2,3) Joh'n Mosemann (T5,7,8) '
WITH GRATITUDE to: Janet Factor and Jim Calderone without whom the live concert would not have occurred and thu srecorded.