New Album Solotude Earning Considerable Acclaim
NPR Music has shared piano master Abdullah Ibrahim’s Tiny Desk (Home) Concert.
To accompany the piece, Bob Boilen said, “It’s less a concert and more witnessing a master thoughtfully creating an atmosphere, a vibe. And for 13 short minutes, I feel seated in Abdullah Ibrahim’s home in Chiemgau, Germany, witnessing seven decades of experience slowly dripping from his fingers and touching my soul.”
In addition, Ibrahim has confirmed concerts with his band Ekaya at NYC’s Blue Note August 23-28.
His new album Solotude, out now on Gearbox Records, has earned raves:
“**** Octogenarian South African pianist at the top of his game.”
“When it comes to sitting alone at a piano and manifesting all the beauty the instrument has to give—along with the best of everything he has inside—Ibrahim is one of the best.”
–Dave Sumner, Bandcamp, December 8, 2021
“Lovely… evoking the sensation of being unbound from linear time.”
–Robert Ham, Paste Magazine, January 31, 2022
“An almost meditative recording where he moves freely between some of his earlier works.”
–John Schaefer, WNYC Newsounds, November 30, 2021
–Nate Chinen, WBGO, January 10, 2022
–Matt Micucci, Jazziz Magazine, September 13, 2021
During the Tiny Desk (Home) Concert, he says, “Solitude. Through the years, I’ve been blessed with being in the company of masters and learning from them all over the world. When we go to school, the first teacher tells us, ‘One plus one equals two.’ In the African tradition, our first teacher is the master. And the master will tell you, ‘This is two.’ So, that starts the life’s journey under the guidance of the master to understand what two is. It’s a long and arduous journey, and one that we accept.”
“One of my masters in Japan, I’ve studied with him now for over 50 years…it’s a principle in Japanese culture called Ikigai. Ikigai, which means, ‘When you wake up this morning, what is it that you really want to do, not what somebody else wants to do?’ Ikigai. So, a few years ago, the master gave me a diploma to teach. And I said, ‘Why do you give me this diploma? I don’t know anything.’ He says, ‘That’s why I gave it to you. Me too. I don’t know anything.’ So, we can continue this process that we’ve been inspired by all these master musicians and mentors.
We practice 25 hours a day. Solitude. Thank you.”