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, often in the same piece. His band could play a swinging Gershwin tune and almost imperceptibly soar into a free cosmic rhapsody as if they possessed a single mind.
Exclusive! Plenty of music, plusSonic Youth singer and guitarist Thurston Moore and The Penguin Guide to Jazz author Brian Morton on Sun Ra... it's our September podcast.
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 and their recent series of residencies at Café Oto in Dalston have thrilled and inspired a new generation of listeners. For this special Transcender performance, Marshall Allen will direct an expanded Arkestra line-up accompanied by a specially-commissioned light show from psychedelic lighting pioneers Mystic Lights.
Interval ClubStage Hieroglyphic Being
Post-concert ClubStage Mala (Digital Mystikz)