[1982 ECM 1179]
Bitter Funeral Beer
Upon my return from Ghana i taught a lot being a missioner for the 12/8 gangokui bell pattern from the Ewe people that I thought might save the world and tried to apply some of what I learned in various musical groupings, among them Archimedes Badkar that recorded an early and quite good version of Darkpen, an arrangement of the Lo-Birifor funeral xylophone music that I had studied with Kakraba Lobi but after some time a bigger group grew out of that to specifically create music around the drumming (mostly Ewe) and funeral music from the north of Ghana. In 1981 we premiered the Bitter Funeral Beer Band at Fasching during Stockholm Jazz Festival and recorded the ECM album that was very well received indeed the next year.
Drummers Bosse Skoglund and Thomas Mera Gartz, Sigge Krantz on bass and guitar, Mattias Hellden on cello, Thord Bengtsson on guitar and violin, Anita Livstrand vocal and ko-gyil, Kalle Eriksson and Tommy Adolfsson on trumpet plus Jörgen Adolfsson, Ulf Wallander, Björn Hellström, Christer Bothén and Kjell Westling on reeds joined me on the ko-gyil in that first edition of the band where everybody also played percussion on some traditional drumming pieces. Don Cherry took part in the recording and played in some of our concerts.