2015 年，大友良英发行了两张吉他独奏专辑，其中一张名为《Guitar Solo 2015 LEFT》，在这里刊登 The Free Jazz Collective 的一篇碟评，作者是 Chris Haines。中文版本由朱松杰翻译，黄山校对。
1982年，最伟大的自由爵士/自由即兴吉他手之一，高柳昌行发行了一张以翻弹为主的电吉他独奏专辑。在爵士吉他独奏中，吉他手往往会使用和弦+旋律的技术，用丰富的和声演绎作品。高柳昌行没有这样做。录音时，他没有任何伴奏，只用一条旋律线来演奏原曲，这种形式贯穿于整张专辑中。这张名为《LonelyWoman》的专辑以 Ornette Coleman 的这首同名经典开场，除此之外，也包括 Charlie Haden 的 “Song for Che”、两首 Lee Konitz 和 Lennie Tristano 的曲子，一个民谣小曲，以及一首原创曲。高柳不仅仅是翻弹，在他随性而延展的旋律即兴中，这些曲子更是成为吉他独奏的载体和跳板。
现在，33年之后，大友良英发行了这张向高柳昌行致敬的专辑：《Guitar Solo 2015 LEFT》。在得到了高柳昌行具有历史意义的吉他后，大友良英向这位伟大导师致敬。不仅仅是用它录制了一张即兴独奏专辑，他还专门弹奏了高柳曾经在专辑里录制的两首曲子：”Lonely Woman” 和 “Song for Che”。
《Guitar Solo 2015 LEFT》绝不是对高柳昌行的《Lonely Woman》的老调重弹。虽然大友良英曾经是这位伟大导师的学生，但是在过去的音乐生涯中，他拓展了自己的方向。他的个人风格和演奏方式贯穿于专辑的六首作品中。”Lonely Woman” 里，他毫不犹豫地对曲子做了更为自由的改动、添上了尖砺的即兴段落、让吉他在长音上发生反馈，并让这些鸣响进一步地延展。他利用吉普森空心吉他所谓的缺陷（它的频率很容易引起反馈），把它变成了自己对 Coleman 乐曲改编的强项。”Song for Che” 里，他把一根低音空弦当作这首曲子里的长音来使用，并借此把它变成简化了的和声伴奏。每次回到旋律的时候，他都会小心地使用混响和过载效果器为声音增添一些色彩。在即兴时，他同样使用了一些和弦反馈的段落。它们有时会转变为噪音肌理的素材，这样，在单音旋律线之外，许多丰满的声波也进入了演奏。
专辑里还有三首原创曲子，以及对日本民谣歌手加川良的反战歌曲“教训-1”的深沉而含蓄的翻唱。大友良英的原创乐曲“蓝风筝”以简单的传统旋律开头，伴随着猛烈的和弦和刺耳的音符，延绵的音符逐渐变得凶悍而繁复。另外两首都是短曲，“城市之光”（Sono Machi No Kodomo）是一首简单的曲子，”2020 Tokyo”则是一次反馈的疯狂爆发。
专辑里透露出的忧伤是对伟大的高柳昌行的一种纪念。从对翻弹曲目的选择，到对极端的噪音声响的运用，再到那些与专辑中其他复杂的音乐大相径庭的简单乐曲都能看出这点。然而，这些作品也是某种延续。无论是使用这把充满历史感的吉他，还是采用容纳了新想法的既成形式，还是选择与之前作品形成了强烈对比的简单旋律，都贯穿着一种在传承中锻造新事物的意志。大友良英的《Guitar Solo 2015 LEFT》不仅是对高柳昌行一次意味深长的致敬，也是对这位战后最重要的自由爵士吉他手之一的音乐批评。
In 1982 Masayuki Takayanagi, one of the greatest free jazz/improv guitarists, released an album of mainly covers played on solo electric guitar. Unlike many solo jazz guitar albums Takayanagi did not employ the chord/melody technique, where the guitarist can play a tune whilst accompanying themselves with chords giving a full harmonic rendition of a piece. Instead he recorded it just using the single melodic line of the tunes he chose to cover without any accompaniment, with this approach being used as the format for the whole album. The album being discussed, Lonely Woman, took its name from the classic Ornette Coleman tune that was the opening track on the album. Now a classic work in it’s own right the pieces that were covered (also including Charlie Haden’s “Song for Che”, another tune by Lee Konitz, a piece by Lennie Tristano, a folk tune and an original) were used as vehicles and jumping off points for Takayanagi’s spontaneous and extended melodic improvisations on solo electric guitar.
Now thirty-three years later Otomo Yoshihide releases Guitar Solo 2015 LEFT as a tribute to the great Takayanagi. Having acquired the guitar of his former teacher, Yoshihide pays honour to him by not only using this historic guitar to produce an album of solo improvisations but also taking in two of the pieces originally included on the Takayanagi album, both “Lonely Woman” and “Song for Che”.
Guitar Solo 2015 LEFT is anything but a re-hash of Takayanagi’s Lonely Woman, and although a former student of the great master, Yoshihide has taken his own course over his career path so far and he continues with his own style and way of playing throughout the six tracks on this album. On “Lonely Woman” he immediately takes more liberties with the tune, ornamenting it with improvised angular phrases and allowing the guitar to feedback on the long sustained tones, which he extends even further by allowing them to ring on. Utilising what some would consider a weakness of the Gibson archtop guitar, (it’s frequency to easily feedback), and turning it into a strength for his interpretation of the Coleman tune. On “Song for Che” he incorporates a low open string to act as a drone for the tune, therefore giving it a simple harmonic accompaniment, and carefully uses effects such as reverb and overdrive each time round on the tune to add a different colour to the sound. Yoshihide also utilises ringing chordal passages in his improvisations, which at times turn into noise based materials giving a much fuller sound spectrum than just the single melodic line.
There are also three originals and a reflective and introverted version of the anti-war song “Kyokun I” (translating as “Lesson One”) by Japanese folk singer Kagawa Ryo. “The Blue Kite”, a Yoshihide original, starts with a simple traditional style melody, using sustained tones, which gradually develops into something more ferocious and complex, with slashing chords and discordant notes. The other two tracks are short pieces, “Sono Machi No Kodomo” (The Town’s Children) a simple chord/melody piece, and “2020 Tokyo” a wild frenetic burst of feedback and activity.
There is a sentiment about this album that is partly a memorial for the late great Masayuki Takayanagi, whether through the choice of the covered tunes, the inclusion of extreme noise-based sounds, or the simple pieces that reflect the complexity of the majority of the music on the album. However, there is also a continuation, a will to carry on and forge something new, through the use of this historic guitar, the established forms that can be used for fresh ideas, and the simpler themes that present a strong contrast to what has gone before. Yoshihide’s Guitar Solo 2015 LEFT not only provides a meaningful homage to Takayanagi, but is also a musical critique on one of the most important past masters of free jazz guitar.