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Ancient Ritual

Sonny Simmons

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Album Review

When this CD was released in 1994, it should have resulted in altoist Sonny Simmons getting a comeback of the year award. Playing in a sparse trio with bassist Charnett Moffett and his son Zarak Simmons on drums, the veteran saxophonist proved to not only be in prime form after many years off the scene, but just as fiery and adventurous as he had been in the 1960s. Simmons' eight originals (which include "Reincarnation," "Country Parson" and "Sundown In Egypt") have plenty of variety, but it is the frequently telepathic interplay between the three musicians during improvisations that makes this CD essential for open-minded listeners.

Biography

Born: 04 August 1933 in Sicily Island, LA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Altoist Sonny Simmons made a strong impression in the 1960s as one of the most promising avant-garde players. He grew up in Oakland, CA, started playing English horn, and then at 16 took up the alto. Stints with Lowell Fulsom and Amos Milburn and some time spent playing bebop preceded Simmons finding his own sound in free jazz. In 1961, he spent some time with Charles Mingus and then, in 1962, he formed a group with flutist Prince Lasha. After they recorded The Cry, Simmons moved to New York, recorded...
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Ancient Ritual, Sonny Simmons
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