Friday, November 20, 2009

Compass on Schoolhouse

Compass Rises
Label : Schoolhouse

Side 1: -30633-
Sour Cream
Pharoah's Thing
Side 2: -30634-
Cleanin Up
Waltz For Barbara
Blues For Vito
Rick Lawn (Tenor Sax, Soprano Sax, Bass Clarinet, Misc. Percussion),
Joel Chase (Electric Piano),
Tom Ives (Electric Bass, Flugelhorn),
Al Calone (Drums),
Smelly (conga drums)

Recorded November 17, 18 & 19, 1972 in Marblehead, Mass.

It's some 40 years ago, now, that "Compass" was born in Oneonta, New York. There were 3 young jazzers just starting to play together in area clubs back then: Joel Chace [piano] from Walton, Tom Ives [bass] from Schenevus, and Al Colone [drums] from Oneonta. They'd perform as the Joel Chace Trio, the Tom Ives Trio, or the Al Colone Trio, depending on who booked the gig. Then in 1971 Rick Lawn, a young saxophonist, a Philadelphia native, and a recent grad of Rochester, New York's Eastman School of Music, came to town to become an instrumental music teacher with the Oneonta Public School System. Lawn, a practicing and active jazz musician, was looking to continue playing jazz in his new hometown, and, through his research, easily discovered the trio of Chace, Ives, and Colone. The group got together and began to rehearse, quickly finding out there was a connection, a common interest in performing, and that they could produce a unique and creative blend of jazz. That may have been what ultimately led to the naming of the quartet, "Compass"; the group played jazz in every direction.

"Compass" began to test its newfound style and energy by booking performances on college campuses, mostly colleges and universities based in New York State. The band self-produced a demo-album entitled "Compass Rises" in 1972, which featured original compositions written and arranged by Lawn and Ives. "Compass" was one of five groups on a promotional program that opened the Saratoga Performing Arts Center in 1972.

For more info & biographies of band members : click here.

1 comment:

  1. Compass is still in tact and performing after all these years. For anyone interested you can buy a digital download that sounds better than the original LP. It's available at Follow the link to Compass. I'm frankly amazed that this LP is still in demand by collectors. Thanks for keeping the music alive.