"Recorded live in Venice in 1977, these rare solo performances find Ra revisiting all facets of his career. With Ra there was never the divide between entertainment and art that marks the performances of younger, more self-conscious tone scientists, a term he preferred to musicians. Thus when he plays a simple blues he brings more dissonance to his left handed feints then you usually associate with the traditional sounds. When he performs his own "Angel Race," he begins by singing variations on the outer space theme." - All About Jazz
Sun Ra / piano
Recorded live at the Teatro La Fenice, Venezia, November 24, 1977.
Available as 320k MP3 or 16bit FLAC
Sun Ra was one of the greatest and least known jazz artists of the last four decades, whose influence on diverse musicians is little known to the general public. A pianist and band leader, his style ranged from retro swing to avant free, and often in the same piece. His band could play a swinging Gershwin tune and almost imperceptibly soar into their free cosmic equational tones as if they possessed a single mind.
Ra was a keyboard improviser of great originality, but his foremost talent was for inspiring and teaching creative musicians to improvise freely but together. This tension between freedom and coherence was something he explored with abundant energy and skill.
Sun Ra died in 1993. The Arkestra performs today, under the direction of alto saxophonist Marshall Allen.