Unfortunately, Eddy Louiss –who had already played with Gilson and Capon on the album “Bill Coleman Sings And Plays 12 Negro Spirituals” in 1968- had to drop out at the last minute: he was delayed by a session with Claude Nougaro. Jean-Charles Capon had also become a sought-after studio musician since his trip to Madagascar in 1969. He appeared on several key albums on the Saravah label including the now famous “Comme À La Radio” by Brigitte Fontaine, “Un Beau Matin” by Areski and “Chorus” by Michel Roques, without mentioning the album by his own Baroque Jazz Trio. He was also to be found with Jef Gilson for his album on Vogue with the ex-drummer from Miles Davis’ first great quintet, Philly Joe Jones, or also in the orchestra led by Jean-Claude Vannier for the album “Nino Ferrer & Leggs”. He also played regularly on albums by Georges Moustaki.
Jean-Charles Capon and Serge Rahoerson found themselves thus in the studio, with Jef at the controls. He had decided to record the rhythmic structure right away. He would find the soloists later, that didn’t worry him. Serge Rahoerson was on drums. Though a saxophonist by training, Jef remembered that Serge was also capable of great things behind a drum kit: he was the improvised drummer on their cover of “The Creator Has A Master Plan” on the album “Malagasy”... The great memories came flooding back (the nod on the title “Orly - Ivato”), and the old magic worked again.
Brought in momentarily from Europamerica, Gilson’s new big band, in which JC Capon also played, the saxophonists Philippe Maté, from France (another Saravah stablemate) and the American Butch Morris (soon to be a key member of David Murray’s band) were invited to record their parts later and Gilson mixed it all as if it had been one single session (as he had already done on other albums, with the tracks by Christian Vander recorded before the creation and success of Magma).
The album would not appear until 1977, on Palm, Jef’s own label, and was dedicated to the memory of Georges Rahoerson, Serge’s father, who had also played on the album “Malagasy” and who had died prematurely at the age of 51 in 1974.
“I only received my own copy of the album in 1981 when I came to live in France definitively”, a still-moved Serge Rahoerson told us in 2013. “I was playing in a club one night and Jef turned up by surprise with a copy of the album for me, I was so pleased to see him again. When I arrived in France, I told everyone that I had played with Jef Gilson a few years previously, and I was surprised to learn that so few people knew of him. For us, he was of one of the great jazz visionaries.”
Jérôme “Kalcha” Simonneau