JAZZ DIARY / The stars look down: Phil Johnson talks to Louis Moholo about life after the Blue Notes.

Louis Moholo carries a heavy burden. As well as being one of the most exciting drummers in the world, he is also the last of his line: the sole surviving member of the original Blue Notes, the South African quartet who arrived in London in 1965 in flight from apartheid and ended up changing the course of British jazz. All the other Blue Notes have died in exile: trumpeter Mongezi Feza in 1975; bassist Johnny Dyani in 1986; pianist Chris McGregor and saxophonist Dudu Pukwana, both in 1990. Moholo is haunted by their memory; indeed, he says he still meets them in his dreams. Fittingly, his latest project, the Dedication Orchestra, is a tribute to the Blue Notes, and to the bassist Harry Miller - a member of Chris McGregor's Brotherhood of Breath - and to Dumile Feni and Princess Patience, two more exiled South African musicians.

When Feza and Dyani died, the remaining Blue Notes recorded tribute albums to them on Ogun Records, the label run by Miller's widow Hazel. With McGregor and Pukwana gone, the Dedication Orchestra - a 24-piece big band - was formed to play two shows at the 100 Club on New Year's Day 1991. They have now released an album, Spirits Rejoice, with re- arrangements of Blue Notes tunes by Keith Tippett, Kenny Wheeler, Mike Westbrook, Django Bates and others.

The recording was an emotional occasion for Moholo. As he recalls: 'I was setting up my instruments while Keith Tippett was rehearsing the singers for Kenny Wheeler's arrangement of Dud's ballad, 'B My Dear'. For the first time I heard it being sung and tears just started falling. I was just setting up and it caught me completely by surprise.'

All proceeds from the album will go to a trust fund to enable young South African musicians to continue their education. Nimbus Records has donated the first pressing of 3,000 CDs and Virgin the first 1,500 cassettes to the Dedication Trust. The participation of so many important musicians in the project is itself a tribute to the massive influence the Blue Notes had on the British scene. When they arrived in London, British jazz musicians were still coming to terms with the music of John Coltrane and Ornette Coleman. The Blue Notes seemed to have absorbed it already, intuitively.

'We were surprised that people were still under the influence of Coltrane,' says Moholo. 'To us he was just another brother playing some different notes. We didn't bother - we just played our music, which complemented the music of the West as well as mixing it with the richness of the South African rhythm, which is the foundation of everything. We could do anything: let the Europeans deal with Coltrane - we were dealing with something else. We were quite an influence, although we did pay our dues and the British musicians gave us something to think about too.'

In December, Moholo is going back to South Africa with his band, Viva la Black, on a two-month tour for the British Council. Spirits Rejoice is available, cost pounds 15, by mail order from Ogun Records, 180 Shaftesbury Avenue, London WC2 (071-836 3646). Cheques should be made out to Spirits Rejoice Dedication Trust Fund.

THE Dedication Orchestra is such a worthy enterprise that at Saturday's concert at the Outside In festival, you felt the band might get an ovation just for turning up. In fact, they played remarkably well, with heroic saxophone solos by Evan Parker, Alan Skidmore and Chris Biscoe among the highlights of a powerful set. The performance of the Indian violinist Shankar, with Andy Sheppard and Nana Vasconcelos, was less successful. Indeed, one musician commented that the band had 'the perfect German festival vibe', playing music so dreamily insubstantial that almost the entire audience seemed to fall asleep. Shankar played his curiously shaped violin less than he sang, in wordless dirge-like vocals, or droned, operating a complex set of electronic effects. Sheppard's delicate saxophone playing was often lost in the mix and the setting did not seem a happy one for him.

The trio of Peter Whyman on clarinet, Peter Fairclough on drums, and Huw Warren on piano was, by contrast, a pleasure to listen to. Taking his cue from the experiments of the American reeds player Jimmy Giuffre, Whyman draws on classical and folk sources in his improvisations to explore complex harmonic patterns while remaining unfailingly tuneful. They were the best new band at the festival.

AUTUMN is the season of new CD releases. Images: Live at Mt Fuji (Blue Note) by the brilliant Cuban pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba is quite outstanding. With Jack Dejohnette on drums and John Patitucci on bass, Rubalcaba plays with astounding speed and power. Even a version of John Lennon's 'Imagine' - normally a cue for nausea - is performed quite beautifully. Releases from earlier in the year that deserve mention include Don Pullen's wonderful Afro- Brazilian fusion, Kele Mou Baha (Blue Note); David Murray's funky organ- combo set, Shakill's Warrior (DIW); Joe Henderson's Billy Strayhorn Tribute, Lush Life (Verve) and Barbara Dennerlein's That's Me (Enja), with Bob Berg on sax. Another excellent CD reissue from the Impulse catalogue is John Coltrane's 1965 classic quartet date First Meditations. ECM's reissue of the Jimmy Giuffre 3's 1961 albums Fusion and Thesis is also one of the re-releases of the year.

Arts and Entertainment
Reach for the sky: there are around 250 new buildings of 20-plus storeys planned for London alone, some 80 per cent of them residential
Arts and Entertainment
Natural beauty: Aidan Turner stars in the new series of Poldark
Arts and Entertainment
Shining star: Maika Monroe, with Jake Weary, in ‘It Follows’
filmReview: The ingenious film will intrigue, puzzle and trouble audiences by turns
Arts and Entertainment
Taylor Swift won Best International Solo Female (Getty)

Brits 2015
Arts and Entertainment

Brits 2015
Arts and Entertainment

Oscars 2015 Mexican filmmaker uses speech to urge 'respect' for immigrants

Arts and Entertainment
The Oscar nominations are due to be announced today

Oscars 2015 Bringing you all the news from the 87th Academy Awards

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

Arts and Entertainment
Lloyd-Hughes takes the leading role as Ralph Whelan in Channel 4's epic new 10-part drama, Indian Summers

TV Review

The intrigue deepens as we delve further but don't expect any answers just yet
Arts and Entertainment
Jason Segal and Cameron Diaz star in Sex Tape

Razzies 2015 Golden Raspberry Awards 'honours' Cameron Diaz and Kirk Cameron

Arts and Entertainment
The Oscars ceremony 2015 will take place at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles
Oscars 2015A quiz to whet your appetite for tonight’s 87th Academy Awards
Arts and Entertainment
Sigourney Weaver, as Ripley, in Alien; critics have branded the naming of action movie network Movies4Men as “offensive” and “demographic box-ticking gone mad”.
TVNaming of action movie network Movies4Men sparks outrage
Arts and Entertainment
Sleater Kinney perform at the 6 Music Festival at the O2 Academy, Newcastle
musicReview: 6 Music Festival
Arts and Entertainment
Sleater Kinney perform at the 6 Music Festival at the O2 Academy, Newcastle
musicReview: 6 Music Festival
Kristen Stewart reacts after receiving the Best Actress in a Supporting Role award for her role in 'Sils Maria' at the 40th annual Cesar awards
A lost Sherlock Holmes story has been unearthed
arts + ents Walter Elliot, an 80-year-old historian, found it in his attic,
Arts and Entertainment
Margot Robbie rose to fame starring alongside Leonardo DiCaprio in The Wolf of Wall Street

Film Hollywood's new leading lady talks about her Ramsay Street days

Arts and Entertainment
Right note: Sam Haywood with Simon Usborne page turning
musicSimon Usborne discovers it is under threat from the accursed iPad
Arts and Entertainment
A life-size sculpture by Nick Reynolds depicting singer Pete Doherty on a crucifix hangs in St Marylebone church
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Escalating tension: Tang Wei and Chris Hemsworth in ‘Blackhat’
filmReview: Chris Hemsworth stars as a convicted hacker in Blackhat
Arts and Entertainment

Oscar voter speaks out

Arts and Entertainment
The Oscars race for Best Picture will be the battle between Boyhood and Birdman

Arts and Entertainment
Anne Boleyn (Claire Foy), Thomas Cromwell (Mark Rylance)
tvReview: Wolf Hall
Arts and Entertainment
Tom Meighan of Kasabian collects the Best Album Award
Arts and Entertainment
Best supporting stylist: the late L’Wren Scott dressed Nicole Kidman in 1997
Arts and Entertainment
Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan as Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey in Fifty Shades of Grey


Arts and Entertainment
Mick Carter (Danny Dyer) and Peggy Mitchell (Barbara Windsor)
tv occurred in the crucial final scene
Arts and Entertainment
Glasgow wanted to demolish its Red Road flats last year
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

    Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

    Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
    How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

    Time to play God

    Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
    MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

    MacGyver returns, but with a difference

    Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
    Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

    Tunnel renaissance

    Why cities are hiding roads underground
    'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

    Boys to men

    The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
    Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

    Crufts 2015

    Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
    10 best projectors

    How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

    Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
    Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

    Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

    Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
    Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

    Monaco: the making of Wenger

    Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
    Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

    Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

    Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
    In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

    In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

    This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
    'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

    Homage or plagiarism?

    'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
    Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

    A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

    Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
    A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

    Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

    A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower