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John
27-06-2009, 20:43
Jazz Rock Fusion is either music you enjoy or hate itís hard to feel neutral with this form of music. For me I love fusion I love its energy its invention the way it pushes boundaries the way it inspires players to develop harmonic knowledge and technique
This is not a whoís who of fusion or a detailed study itís more about me sharing something I enjoy and tends to concentrate on the more rock side of Fusion
I guess there is a connection between progressive rock and fusion. Progressive players have often had similar goals and influences and there paths often cross but initially they originate from different strands. Psychedelic music is often the considered the father of progressive rock while Jazz fusion tends to come from Jazz musicians wanting to bring in some of the energy and influences they heard in popular music
Jazz Fusion origins originate in the 60s with the albums Duster and Out of Sight and Sound as well as Miles Davis In many ways Miles Davis helped encourage the movement several notable players formed they own Bands I am not the greatest fan of Bitches Brew myself its far to avant-garde for my ears but see its importance in pushing musical boundaries
Tony Williams Lifetime
Tony Williams has managed to have 2 great British guitar players in John McLaughlin and Alan Holdsworth
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RW5pmgVuB5U
Mahavishnu Orchestra came in like a bulldozer just destroying everything before it with its power and energy. For me itís all about the interaction of the band how they combine together to create this wall of energy. The band had a collective mix of musicians I guess the first thing I notice is the bands power and then tune into Johns guitar playing and the intense drumming of Billy Cobham, but as I listen deeper I hear the other musicians Jan Hammers bombastic keyboards and Jerry Goodman soaring violin playing; for me its the first two albums that I love
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bMK92agDGH4&feature=related
In America Chick Corea formed Return to Forever with two notable musicians Stanley Clarke and Al Dimeola For me its Al who steals the show
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wSksWyHsYw8
Out the above groups comes a whole bunch of Fusion albums with band members forming side projects or having solo careers e.g.
Billy Cobham Spectrum This has Tommy Bolin who also played in Deep Purple on guitar
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q-beI4WWHL8
Stanley Clarke Hideaway http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctTX2M_mmp8&feature=related
Alan Holdsworth Secrets
Alan is an amazing guitar player generally I tend to prefer his work when he is supporting other artists a good example of this would be some of his work with Gong
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPI7zTqh4oY
I love the music of Al Di Meola I seen him live both in an acoustic setting and electric I love the way he makes notes leap out in Abandon how manages to always bring in great riffs for me this captures his more rock orientated playing well I love his early work like Casino the production on this album is awesome
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPI7zTqh4oY

The 1980s for me fusion kind of went into hibernation as Fusion be came a lot more smooth jazz For most people this is a lot easier to listen too but I rarely can connect into it there are a few I can enjoy as I like my music to have a certain edge In some ways I think it was a reaction to the excess of the 70s and a genuine desire to make fusion more accessible However there are a few I love from this period
Gamalon Aerial View. The first two albums are well worth hunting down but its the second (Aerial View) that keeps me coming back for more
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WBTmoepUukc
Uzeb from Canada also produced many good albums my favourite being Noisy Nights they could be funky but some really cutting guitar
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ivc9DwZDM1w
Other albums worth listening to from this period
Kazumi Watanabe Spice of Live Two Mobo I and II Mobo Club
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-z1-Ulj2nCc&feature=related
Birelli Lagrene Inferno
The 1990s brought many new players into the field Pat Metheny Mike Stern Scott Henderson Frank Gamable and some notable players from rock as well like Tony MacAlpine and Greg Howe. Fusion had got its edge back
I think my favourite modern fusion album is by Jonas Helborg Jeff Sipe and Shawn Lane Temporal Analogues in Paradise
Planet X Take elements of fusion and mix it up with a dose of metal and progressive metal
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Hn_WLRpZcY&feature=related
Others worth checking out include Spaced Out 7for4 and Fragile
For me one of the reasons I love fusion music is it willingness to keep pushing boundaries and the energy the music can create I can enjoy everything from the smooth fusion of Lee Reitnoir to the intensity and complexity of On the Virg
I can totally understand why people do not like fusion It can be elitist and has a habit of being to complex to enjoy
In the last few years I become interested in world fusion as I enjoy its exotic sounds and musicians finding a common language and brings back to why I enjoy Fusion its about bringing together and from that creating something new

Sand Dancin Donkey Walker
28-06-2009, 07:42
John

Good write up there, totally agree with you choices. Your comments with regard to the 80's Jazz Fusion being 'Smooth' is spot on, though there have some excellent music there too.

Do you remember 'Pieces of a Dream' great first couple of releases then turned a touch bland.

Funnily enough I don't have anything from the 'Mahavishnu Orchestra'. Any good first recommendations?

I got into Jazz Fusion from a Rock, Heavy Metal background. Lots of great stuff out there, unfortunately a lot of dross. Though that true of any music genre.

I'm currently at work and the Bu****s have blocked ‘You tube’ on the server, ho well will follow the links later tonight.

Well Done John, I think I would enjoy search through you music collection as we have similar tastes.

Andy - SDDW

John
28-06-2009, 16:43
My favouritte Mahvishnu Orchestra albums are
The Inner Mountain Flame and Birds of Fire
Yes we come from a similar background with music for me it was also learning to play the guitar helped open up my ear to different music
One of the albums that really stands out and I think you would love is Gamalon Aerial View if you can get it on vinyl you will have not only great album but a lp that has stunning resolution hearing this on good TT is an experience
John

The Grand Wazoo
28-06-2009, 20:26
The Inner Mountain Flame and Birds of Fire

~ I'd second those recommendations & also the Billy Cobham - 'Spectrum' is an album everyone should try.

Sand Dancin Donkey Walker
28-06-2009, 20:57
Hi Chris

Good choice with Billy Cobham and 'Spectrum'. The one that, at the time really grabbed me was 'Warning'

Been a touch bored at work today and have been browsing FleeBay, dropped a few LP's into my Watch List and totalled the lot up this evening, grand total of nearly £550. Needless to say I won't be buyng them all, but wil indulge in a few at least.

Andy - SDDW

The Grand Wazoo
28-06-2009, 21:03
Been a touch bored at work today

I noticed!!..........That link to the synthesiser was brilliant. Interesting to click squares to make up words to see what they sound like!!

Stratmangler
28-06-2009, 21:10
Al Di Meola's "Elegant Gypsy" is absolutely a "must have" album for me.

Chris:)

Sand Dancin Donkey Walker
28-06-2009, 21:16
I noticed!!..........That link to the synthesiser was brilliant. Interesting to click squares to make up words to see what they sound like!!

I turned the speaker volume down then made a nice patten, turned up the sound to see what it was like, Strangely the more geometric shapes made good sound sequences.

Andy - SDDW

Barry
29-06-2009, 01:34
~ I'd second those recommendations & also the Billy Cobham - 'Spectrum' is an album everyone should try.

Sorry Guys

I'm going to have to dissagree. In my opinion 'Inner Mountain Flame' was one of the most overrated recordings of the '80s - I gave my copy away.

I much prefer Shakti with John McLaughlin: both the eponymous title and 'Natural Elements'.

Regards

REM
29-06-2009, 09:51
Surprised no mention yet for Weather Report, pre and post JP, fabulous:smoking:

Cheers

Marco
29-06-2009, 10:09
I much prefer Shakti with John McLaughlin: both the eponymous title and 'Natural Elements'.


I've got both those albums, and they're superb, and also the Billy Cobham one mentioned, but to me they're quite different and not really comparable :)

Marco.

Barry
29-06-2009, 10:48
Surprised no mention yet for Weather Report, pre and post JP, fabulous:smoking:

Cheers

Hi Ralph,

Jazz Rock as a genre is so nebulous that I didn't think of Weather Report, despite recently expanding my collection (courtesy of TGW).

Does Nucleus 'Elastic Rock' come into the jazz rock genre and what about Colosseum, with Dick Heckstall-Smith? Miles Davis - post 'Bitches Brew'?

Regards

John
29-06-2009, 14:59
Hi Ralph,

Jazz Rock as a genre is so nebulous that I didn't think of Weather Report, despite recently expanding my collection (courtesy of TGW).

Does Nucleus 'Elastic Rock' come into the jazz rock genre and what about Colosseum, with Dick Heckstall-Smith? Miles Davis - post 'Bitches Brew'?

Regards

I think they all come in the Jazz rock fusion genre
Feel free to add more artists/bands

REM
29-06-2009, 17:35
Does Nucleus 'Elastic Rock' come into the jazz rock genre and what about Colosseum, with Dick Heckstall-Smith? Miles Davis - post 'Bitches Brew'?

Regards

I would reckon so, especially the Miles, some say it kind of defined the genre but surely you have to include the likes of Soft Machine and J.L. Ponty's 'Cosmic Messenger' album as well. A nebulous genre indeed but as someone once said, jazz, if you have to ask what it is you aint never gonna know!

Thanks for the reminder Barry, just dug out my battered old copy of Valentine Suite, stunning album:smoking::smoking:

Cheers

The Grand Wazoo
29-06-2009, 17:52
A nebulous genre indeed ..........

Never met a genre that wasn't nebulous! That's why I hate them so! Well, that & the fact that they make some people get stuck in a musical rut.

John
29-06-2009, 19:19
Yes tend to agree that genres can be limiting; but a really interesting artist or band will always finds way to explore and bring something new

The Grand Wazoo
29-06-2009, 19:37
......... they make some people get stuck in a musical rut.........

........in the sense of the listener only listening to their chosen genre rather than musicians getting into a rut. I think that, on the whole, genres only exist in the minds of the listener.

Most musicians have far more musically open minds than their fans!!

REM
30-06-2009, 13:06
........ I think that, on the whole, genres only exist in the minds of the listener.



....and in the marketing departments of the record companies...and the music press...

John
30-06-2009, 14:53
........in the sense of the listener only listening to their chosen genre rather than musicians getting into a rut. I think that, on the whole, genres only exist in the minds of the listener.

Most musicians have far more musically open minds than their fans!!

I think one of the best compliments I had was from a very good guitarist who said I had musicians ears to new music Not 100% sure what that ment but thought it was cool
Chris I promise no more genre based over views

John
20-07-2009, 18:14
Here is a great link lots of live Fusion music enjoy
http://www.jazzfusion.tv/bootlegaudio.1205.html