Songwriter, drummer and percussionist, Afro-jazz musician Cheikh Tidiane Fall has collaborated with several renowned musicians of the Free jazz and Bee-bop scenes of the 1970s such as: Pharoah Saunders, Dexter Gordon, Steve Lacy, Abbey Lincoln, Sunny Murray, Teddy Edwards, Archie Shepp, The Art Ensemble of Chicago. Herbie Hancock and others.
After graduating, Cheikh Tidiane Fall moved to France to study filming, then decided to follow his second passion, jazz music. His career started in Belgium where he played percussion with Gerard Montrose and Paul Van Gysegem. Upon his return to Paris in 1977, he created the Assum Trio with Nana Vasconcellos, and Ayib Dieng,
But Cheikh Tidiane Fall did not just played, he deepened his musical research and organized numerous training courses throughout France and Yugoslavia. This experience allowed him to develop a method of teaching percussions in relations with the body and the voice. "The body should be taken as a sound object and become percussion instrument and rhythmic movement at a time. The voice possesses a dynamism that is incorporated into the rhythm by enriching a multitude of sound combinations, including breaths. The voice and the body are articulated effectively in learning percussion involving the whole person” said Cheikh Tidiane Fall.
By the end of 1979, Cheikh Tidiane Fall created, with American pianist,saxophonist Bobby Few and Guinean saxophonist Jo Maka, a new trio with whom he will record Diom Futa, an album where jazz, passion, meets rhythms of Senegal. The release of this album, reissued in 2002 with two more titles ("Hands Free" and "Song for Jo" dedicated to Jo Maka) With this album, Tall got much recognition from many jazz musicians, including Chris McGregor, Archie Shepp, Don Cherry, Randy Weston, Abdullah Ibrahim and Pharoah Sanders, and got many requests to be part of their concerts, international tours or participate to their recordings.
Cheikh Tidiane Tall participated in the 1984 documentary “I’m Jazz, It’s my life” about Jazz Legend Archie Shepp. Cheikh Tidiane Tall was also one of the musicians appearing in the movie “Round Midnight” made by French producer Bertrand Tavernier. The film went on to win an Oscar for Best Originall Score in 1986.
Excerpts from article by Nago Seck 18 juin 2008 - © Afrisson