James Marcellus Arthur "Sunny" Murray (born Idabel,
Oklahoma in 1936) is one of the pioneers of the free jazz
style of drumming.
Murray spent his youth in Philadelphia before moving to
New York City where he began playing with Cecil Taylor:
"We played for about a year, just practicing, studying - we
went to workshops with Varèse, did a lot of creative things,
just experimenting, without a job" He featured on the
influential 1962 concerts in Denmark released as Nefertiti
the Beautiful One Has Come.
He was among the first to forgo the drummer's traditional
role as timekeeper in favor of purely textural playing.
"Murray's aim was to free the soloist completely from the
restrictions of time, and to do this he set up a continual
hailstorm of percussion ..