The Meeting (Art Ensemble of Chicago album)

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The Meeting
Studio album by Art Ensemble of Chicago
Released August 19, 2003
Recorded Spring 2003
Genre Avant-garde jazz
Free jazz
Label Pi Recordings
Producer Seth Rosner
Art Ensemble of Chicago chronology
The Meeting
Sirius Calling
(2004)Sirius Calling2004

The Meeting is a reunion studio album released by the jazz group the Art Ensemble of Chicago (AEOC). It was recorded during the Spring of 2003 in Madison, Wisconsin and released on August 19, 2003 on the international label Pi Recordings.


The album was released the same year as their 2001 recording Tribute to Lester, but they were released on different labels. The album reunites Joseph Jarman with the rest of the AEOC after he "retired" in early 1990s after 23 years with the group in order to pursue a spiritual life, including running a Buddhist dojo in Brooklyn, New York. Reviews were mixed for the album, perhaps because, as National Public Radio reviewer Kevin Whitehead commented, "the ensemble is more of a business than a musical enterprise at this point."[1]


The album was met with mixed reviews. Allmusic's Thom Jurek awarded the album 4 stars, saying that ultimately, the album "is a glorious reunion album, one that delights as it provokes."[2] Others have commented that the return of Jarman solidifies that "the AEC is a band to contend with."[3] Jazz Word's Ken Waxman had other opinions, saying "the overriding feel of the session is so reductionist that the listener may feel as if he has wondered into a microtonal recital".[4] NPR's Whiteman said both albums have "more filler than cafeteria meatloaf."[1]

Most reviews comment that the absence of Lester Bowie is obvious.[2] Review John Chacona of One Final note comments that "there were moments where I expected to hear a "blat" delivered with his perfect comic timing."[3] The Penguin Guide to Jazz also mentions "an eerie moment" when "somebody plays something which sounds uncannily like a Lester Bowie break."[5] All About Jazz reviewer Mark Corrotto says that Jarman's return "doesn't substitute for Bowie's absence, it merely aims the music in different directions"[6] even though NPR's Whiteman says Jarman's return "makes the band seem like the real deal."[1]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[2]
Penguin Guide to Jazz 3/4 stars

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Hail We Now Sing Joy" (Jarman) — 4:56
  2. "It's the Sign of the Times" (Favors) — 18:44
  3. "Tech Ritter and the Megabytes" (Mitchell) — 4:22
  4. "Wind and Drum" (Art Ensemble of Chicago) — 11:09
  5. "The Meeting" (Mitchell) — 6:49
  6. "Amin Bidness" (Art Ensemble of Chicago) — 8:33
  7. "The Train to Io" (Art Ensemble of Chicago) — 4:53



  • Kevin Beauchamp — production assistant
  • Tom Blain — mastering
  • Joseph Blough — photography
  • Steve Gotcher, Buzz Kemper — engineer, editing, mixing
  • David Holmes, Sammy Hunter — crew
  • Seth Rosner — executive producer
  • Yulun Wang — associate producer


  1. ^ a b c Kevin Whitehead (November 11, 2003). "Music Review: CDs from the Art Ensemble of Chicago". Retrieved 2007-06-09. 
  2. ^ a b c Thom Jurek. "The Meeting". Retrieved 2007-06-06. 
  3. ^ a b John Chacona (December 2, 2003). "Tribute To Lester + The Meeting". Retrieved 2007-06-06. 
  4. ^ Ken Waxman (March 8, 2004). "The Meeting". Retrieved 2007-06-06. 
  5. ^ The Penguin Guide to Jazz by Richard Cook, Brian Morton, et al. pg. 49 (eighth edition)
  6. ^ Mark Corroto. "The Meeting". Retrieved 2007-06-06.