"I consider much of my music... to be blues-based," claims La Monte Young
, the acknowledged father of minimalism. This might not seem so bizarre considering his early collaborations with jazz musicians and the undoubted minimal qualities of blues pioneers like Howlin' Wolf
and Muddy Waters
. Like many of his works, Young
has been developing the piece here, "Young's Dorian Blues in G," since its inception in 1960, including his work with his Theatre of Eternal Music ensemble with John Cale
and Tony Conrad
. Here the piece is presented as a two-hour live performance which he did at the Kitchen in New York in 1993 with a guitar/bass/drums line-up headed by Young
's synthesizer in his "just intonation" tuning. Beginning with an elegiac opening, the piece soon evolves into a rollicking, driving, gradually-evolving epic featuring Jon Catler's searing guitar runs and Young
's keyboard mimicking a barrelhouse piano -- because the two of them trade solo spots so effectively, this never gets tedious or drawn-out. With its extensive liner notes, Just Stompin'
serves an excellent introduction to the work of one of the most important composers of the 20th century, especially for anyone interested in Young
's work but frightened off by the scope of the 5-LP The Well-Tuned Piano.