Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

BLUIETT, Hamiet

(b '40, Lovejoy IL) Baritone saxophonist (also flute, clarinet) in contemporary black music. Added deep voice to Julius Hemphill's Coon Bid'ness '75, Sunny Murray's Applecores '78 on Philly Jazz, Don Pullen's A Well Kept Secret '80 on Shemp; also played on long title cut on Lester Bowie's The Great Pretender '81; recorded with Abdullah Ibrahim when he was Dollar Brand (African Space Program '73, The Journey '77). 'Tranquil Beauty' was recorded bya septet including Don Moye in May '76 for Wildflower series on Douglas (see Jazz). First own LP was Endangered Species '76, a quintet with Phillip Wilson on India Navigation label; then six albums '77: Bars a trio set with Moye, Marcello Melis on bass on Musica; Birthright a solo blues concert recorded live, S.O.S. a live quartet set with Moye, Don Pullen and Fred Hopkins (last two on India Navigation: two-CD set Im/Possible To Keep is by that quartet); Resolution on Black Saint added Billy Hart to make a quintet; Orchestra, Duo And Septet on Chiaroscuro had eleven playing 'Glory (Symphony For World Peace)', duet with Pullen, two pieces for septet. Sextet on Dangerously Suite '81 incl. vocalist Irene Datcher and Ebu '84 was a quartet, both on Soul Note. Also played in World Saxophone Quartet and led the Clarinet Family, with seven clarinets incl. Buddy Collette, plus Hopkins and Ronnie Burrage in rhythm section; Live In Berlin With The Clarinet Family '84 on Black Saint. Nali Kola '87 was on Soul Note, ten pieces incl. Hugh Masekela and African drums; You Don't Need To Know/If You Have To Ask '91 on Tutu saw a return to the baritone, with Hopkins, three others; Sankofa/Rear Garde '92 on Soul Note was a quartet. To the Mapleshade label for more albums: Young Warrior, Old Warrior '95 had young tenor saxist Mark Shim, Jack Walrath on trumpet, Larry Willis on piano, Keeter Betts on bass and Jimmy Cobb on drums, everybody making room; Bluiett's Barbeque Band '95 was an audiophile's delight with no mixing or compression, putting the listener in the middle of a big funky rhythm section, Bluiett the only horn; Makin' Whoopie '96 was a trio with Betts, Rodney Jones on acoustic guitar, guests on some tracks. Baritone Nation was a quartet of baritone saxes: Bluiett, James Carter, Patience Higgins and Howard Johnson, plus Kahil El'Zabar on percussion, described by Ben Ratliff in The Times 8/2002 as 'rude, fresh and overwhelming, the kind of thing that's in short supply even in jazz's avant-garde.'