The copy that I recently purchased is a Japanese package with no English except the track titles. Research indicates that it was recorded in 1966 and features ten musicians. Five are jazz men: Joe Harriott, Kenny Wheeler, Pat Smythe, Coleridge Goode and Allan Ganley. In addition there is a flute, violin (John Mayer, composer), tambura, tabla and sitar. Just four tracks with a running time of little over thirty minutes.
However don't be put off by the length. It's quality rather than quantity that matters.
This is the first of three (to my knowledge) indo-jazz fusion experiments conducted by West Indian alto player and Calcutta bred John Mayer. Since the essence of indian music is improvisation jazz has a great affinity with it. The experiment succeeds to produce music which is fascinating to listen to, rich in tone and rhythm. Well worth buying, and then investigate the other two indo-jazz fusion albums produced shortly afterwards.
This fascinating album was first issued on the COLUMBIA 'Lansdowne Series' and was an early and successful attempt at fusing jazz and Indian music.
The four pieces, recorded in London on October 10, 1966, were written and directed by Calcutta comoser John Mayer with a double quintet featuring Joe Harriott(alto sax); Kenny Wheeler(trumpet); Pat Smythe(piano); Coleridge Goode(bass); Allan Ganley(drums); Chris Taylor(flute); John Mayer(violin, harpsichord); Diwan Motihar(sitar); Chandrahas Paigankar(tambura); Keshav Sathe(tabla).
I have vivid memories of a marvellous Indo Jazz Fusions concert at the Chichester Festival Theatre in 1966 with Joe Harriott in blazing form.
'Indo-Jazz Suite' has always been an elusive album so it's good to have this exciting and rewarding music back in circulation.
on 8 February 2015
Bought this disc on sale in a Japanese pressing, never having heard of Joe Harriott, and found an unexpected pleasure. Great sound, dynamics, percussion, and music that rolls with momentum. Will look for more Harriott. Definitely a demonstration disc.