All About Jazz

Home » Musicians » Mahavishnu Orchestra

Mahavishnu Orchestra Mahavishnu Orchestra

John McLaughlin's Mahavishnu Orchestra is considered by many to be the greatest Jazz-fusion group of all time. The group was formed in late 1970-early 1971 by McLaughlin, a brilliant guitarist with a jazz-rock pedigree that included work with the Graham Bond Organization in the mid-60s, and with the electrified Miles Davis on his landmark “Bitches Brew” LP in 1969.

The original Orchestra included Jan Hammer (later to score TV's “Miami Vice”) on keyboards, Jerry Goodman on violin, Rick Laird on bass, and Billy Cobham on drums. Signed with much hoopla to Columbia in 1971, they released two fabulous studio albums, “Inner Mounting Flame,” (’71) and “Birds of Fire,” (’72) along with a live ‘73 album, “Between Nothingness and Eternity.”

A reformation of the group in 1974 brought Jean-Luc Ponty on board to play violin, Gayle Moran on keyboards and vocals, Ralphe Armstrong on bass, and drummer Michael Warden. This lineup recorded “Apocalpyse, in ’74. There were other personnel changes but by 1975 the band had disbanded after the album “Visions of the Emerald Beyond.”

There was another attempt in 1984 to revive the band with Cobham again on drums, Bill Evans on saxophone, Mitchell Forman, keyboards, Jonas Hellborg on bass and Danny Gottlieb on drums. This lineup released “Mahavishnu,” on Warner Brothers, to lukewarm responses from the audience.

Read more

Tags

Albums

Watch

Similar

Pat Metheny Pat Metheny
guitar
Al Di Meola Al Di Meola
guitar
Weather Report Weather Report
band/orchestra
Ornette Coleman Ornette Coleman
saxophone, alto
Frank Zappa Frank Zappa
guitar
Soft Machine Soft Machine
band/orchestra
Return to Forever Return to Forever
band/orchestra
Gentle Giant Gentle Giant
band/orchestra

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and through our retail affiliations you'll support us in the process.

MUSICSTACK
Rare vinyl LPs and CDs from over 1,000 independent sellers
AMAZON
CDs, Vinyl, Blu-Ray DVDS, Prime membership, Alexa, SONOS and more
HD TRACKS
Specializing in high resolution and CD-quality downloads
CD UNIVERSE
Specializing in music, movies and video games
REVERB
Marketplace for new, used, and vintage instruments and gear

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.