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Lonnie Liston Smith

Born:

The Great Lonnie Liston Smith is one of contemporary music’s most versatile musicians. In a career that spans some 40 years, he has been heard in a variety of context as a featured sideman for some of Jazz music’s most illustrious leaders before stepping out to reveal his own original concepts as a bandleader in the mid 70’s. He is a keyboardist of the first rank and has influenced a generation of young players that have acknowledged his rhythmic urgency (swing), harmonic acumen and composing skills. Lonnie was born in Richmond, Virginia into a musical family. His father was a member of the Gospel Group, “The Harmonizing Four”

Album

Expansions

Label: Ace Records UK
Released: 2020
Track listing: Expansions; Desert Nights; Summer Days; Voodoo Woman; Peace; Shadows; My Love.

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Pharoah Sanders: An Alternative Top Ten Albums To Feed Your Head

Read "Pharoah Sanders: An Alternative Top Ten Albums To Feed Your Head" reviewed by Chris May


Fellow tenor-wielding sonic adventurer Albert Ayler famously described his own and Pharoah Sanders' relationships with their mentor John Coltrane thus: “Trane was the Father, Pharoah was the Son, I am the Holy Ghost." The epigram goes some way to capturing the scorched-earth ferocity of much, though not all, of Sanders' music in the 1960s. But Ayler ...

37

Article: Building a Jazz Library

Rahsaan Roland Kirk: An Alternative Top Ten Albums Guaranteed To Bend Your Head

Read "Rahsaan Roland Kirk: An Alternative Top Ten Albums Guaranteed To Bend Your Head" reviewed by Chris May


Jazz musicians are rarely called shamanistic but the description fits Rahsaan Roland Kirk precisely. Clad in black leather trousers and heavy duty shades (he was blind from the age of two), a truckload of strange looking horns strung round his neck—two or three of which he often played simultaneously--twisting, shaking and otherwise contorting his body, stamping ...

13

Article: Album Review

Rymden: Space Sailors

Read "Space Sailors" reviewed by Gareth Thompson


Outer space and cosmic jazz have long been a match made beyond heaven. The latest act throwing their hat into Saturn's rings is the excellent Norwegian band Rymden, featuring keyboardist Bugge Wesseltoft. The trio has clearly boned up on Sun Ra and Lonnie Liston Smith, but rockier influences are present too from the likes of Hawkwind, ...

1

Article: Radio

Revenge of the Cosmic Panda

Read "Revenge of the Cosmic Panda" reviewed by Patrick Burnette


Does harp music fill you with images of celestial angels, or a (relatively) tamed Pharoah Sanders? Either way, there's something for you here in this brief overview of “cosmic" jazz. We start with a good, long look at the early career of Pharaoh Sanders and his brief gig with displaced resident of Saturn, Sun Ra, then ...

11

Article: Interview

Meet Andy Bey

Read "Meet Andy Bey" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki


From the 1995-2003 archive: This article first appeared at All About Jazz in February 2000. Listening for the first time to Andy Bey is like stepping into a quiet, still lake. Your foot first parts a surface that's smooth and tranquil, but you can't really tell from that surface how deeply your foot must ...

25

Article: Building a Jazz Library

Bob Thiele's Flying Dutchman Records: Ten High Altitude Albums

Read "Bob Thiele's Flying Dutchman Records: Ten High Altitude Albums" reviewed by Chris May


Bob Thiele is best remembered for his years as the artistic director and house producer of Impulse!. He took over from founder producer Creed Taylor in 1961 and stayed with the label until 1969, when he left to run his own Flying Dutchman Records. Thiele's tenure at Impulse! was its most glorious period, when Thiele curated ...

25

Article: Building a Jazz Library

Strata-East: Seizing the Time

Read "Strata-East: Seizing the Time" reviewed by Chris May


Operating on minimum finance and maximum passion, Brooklyn's Strata-East label was a pivotal platform for the spiritual-jazz movement that emerged during the Civil Rights struggle of the 1970s. Its closest contemporary comparator was Chicago's Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians. Both were non-profit organisations. The AACM was non-profit by design. With Strata-East, co-founder Charles Tolliver ...

9

Article: Album Review

Leon Thomas: Spirits Known And Unknown

Read "Spirits Known And Unknown" reviewed by Chris May


Spiritual-jazz fans in London have had a good 2019. The music looms large in several of the most prominent bands on the city's happening woke jazz scene. On top of that, London's Gearbox Records released Mothership, an on-point album by singer Dwight Trible, who also played a memorable one-nighter at Ronnie Scott's club. ...


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