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Lanquidity

Sun Ra

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Album Review

While one can't quite call it the Sun Ra dance album, this 1978 recording, made for a tiny Philadelphia record label, finds the Sun Ra Arkestra's rhythm section settling into a steady groove on each of the lengthy tracks, while horns, reeds, guitars, and Sun Ra's keyboards solo in overlapping patterns on top. The title number recalls Charles Mingus' "Goodbye Porkpie Hat" in its slow pace and elegiac tone, while the middle three tracks have livelier beats with playing that often answers to the style of fusion played by many jazz groups in the late '70s. "There Are Other Worlds (They Have Not Told You Of)," the nearly 11-minute concluding tune, is the closest to more familiar 1960s and early-'70s Sun Ra, with its less cohesive lead work and the "ethnic voices" that speak, sing, and whisper about outer space. Lanquidity was extremely rare in its original vinyl pressing. It was reissued by Evidence Music on September 26, 2000, with liner notes in which John Dilberto discussed Sun Ra's 25-year residence in Philadelphia and Tom Buchler, who organized the recording session, discussed the making of the album.

Biography

Born: 22 May 1914 in Birmingham, AL

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Of all the jazz musicians, Sun Ra was probably the most controversial. He did not make it easy for people to take him seriously, for he surrounded his adventurous music with costumes and mythology that both looked backward toward ancient Egypt and forward into science fiction. In addition, Ra documented his music in very erratic fashion on his Saturn label, generally not listing recording dates and giving inaccurate personnel information, so one could not really tell how advanced some of his innovations...
Full Bio