What is Twylight ?
Geri Allen, the renowned pianist, recorded her album "Twylight" in early 1989, and it remains a landmark of contemporary jazz. This album is a perfect showcase of Allen's virtuosity, and it features a range of styles, from bebop to avant-garde.
In this blog post, we'll explore the unique qualities of "Twylight," how it reflects Allen's artistry, and why it remains an essential album for jazz aficionados.
The Background of Twylight
Geri Allen was born in Pontiac, Michigan, in 1957, and grew up surrounded by music. She started playing piano at a young age and went on to study at Howard University and the University of Pittsburgh.
In the 1980s, Allen became a fixture on the New York jazz scene, working with luminaries like saxophonist Steve Coleman and drummer Jack DeJohnette. In 1989, Allen recorded "Twylight" for the major jazz label, Blue Note Records.
The Tracks of Twylight
"Twylight" consists of nine tracks, all composed by Geri Allen. The album opens with "Dolphy's Dance," a tribute to the legendary saxophonist Eric Dolphy. The track features an intricate melody, with Allen's piano leading the charge.
The second track, "Black Man," features a spoken word introduction by actor Ossie Davis, and the song is a poignant meditation on the black experience. It is a testament to Allen's deep artistic vision and social consciousness.
Other tracks on the album include "Feed the Fire," a funky tune that highlights the tight interplay between Allen's piano, bassist Ron Carter, and drummer Jimmy Cobb; and "Feed the Fire," a ballad that showcases Allen's sensitive and lyrical side.
The Legacy of Twylight
"Twylight" was an immediate critical success and helped establish Allen as one of the leading voices in contemporary jazz. The album's eclectic mix of styles and moods showed that Allen was a versatile and inventive composer and performer.
But "Twylight" also had a lasting impact on the jazz scene. Its influence can be heard in the work of other pianists, such as Jason Moran and Vijay Iyer, who have cited Allen as an inspiration.
Geri Allen's "Twylight" is a masterpiece of modern jazz, and it continues to inspire new generations of musicians and listeners. The album's fusion of tradition and innovation, its social consciousness, and its virtuosity all make it a timeless classic.
If you're a fan of jazz or just appreciate great music, "Twylight" is an essential addition to your collection.