Wha-du:The Korean Jazz Standards Vol.1 by Lee Jung-sik
I believe it is the first Korean Jazz CD by a group of professional jazz musicians. Lee, Jung-Sik not just plays sax but also arranged the whole songs except track 7. Of 11 tracks five are based on old folk songs and two songs are accompanied by vocalists. Lee's jazzy (!)rendition of korean songs are unique and truely beautiful. This CD, I believe, opens a new horizon for the world of jazz. Any one who have enjoyed Dieter Ilg Trio's "Folk Songs" will really appreciate this CD. It is the Korean version of the "Folk Songs." It is interesting to note that Lee does not include "Arirang" the most famous old Korean song in his CD. You can find this song instead in the Dieter Ilg Trio's "Folk Songs," which are all based on European folk songs except the 'Arirang.' Track 4 of the "Wha-Du" is titled "I'm seventeen" and is the first Korean jazz written by a Korean in 1938. It was influenced by American swing jazz, which was just introdued in Korea at the time though most Korean never heard any jazz at all. Finally, the title of this CD is very interesting: Wha-Du (pronounce;doo)is another word for Zen "Ko-an" and literally means "initial word(s)." All Korean Zen students have to have a "Wha-du" to practice spiritual paths, so does the musician for the path of jazz, the title seems to say. I'd like to ask any jazz fan to review this CD again because I'm new to the jazz. you can buy this CD at most Korean markets and video shops, or they can order it for you. If you have a hard time to find it just email to me then I'll help you to find it. Unfortunately, there is no English or any other European translation for the CD and music except the subtitle. Well, music itself is international language why bother.