Born: March 2, 1942
Free jazz has not produced many notable guitarists. Experimental musicians drawn to the guitar have had few jazz role models; consequently, they've typically looked to rock-based players for inspiration. James Blood Ulmer is one of the few exceptionsan outside guitarist who has forged a style based largely on the traditions of African-American vernacular music. Ulmer is an adherent of saxophonist/composer Ornette Coleman's vaguely defined Harmolodic theory, which essentially subverts jazz's harmonic component in favor of freely improvised, non-tonal, or quasi-modal counterpoint. Ulmer plays with a stuttering, vocalic attack; his lines are frequently texturally and chordally based, inflected with the accent of a soul-jazz tenor saxophonist. That's not to say his sound is untouched by the rock traditionthe influence of Jimi Hendrix on Ulmer is strongbut it's mixed with blues, funk, and free jazz elements. The resultant music is an expressive, hard-edged, loudly amplified hybrid that is, at its best, on a level with the finest of the Harmolodic school....
In And OutIn+out record
In And OutWarner Bros. Records
Bad Blood in the City: The Piety Street SessionsHyena Records
Bad Blood In The City: The Piety Street SessionsHyena Records
No Escape from the Blues: The Electric Lady SessionsHyena Records
Guitar MusicWarner Bros. Records
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