On The Fringes Of The Free

In its rush to explain history, jazz criticism has often been mistaken in presenting the explosion  of free jazz and the supremacy of improvisation over writing as the sole significant developments of the sixties. 

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Horace Silver

After this decade the history of jazz no longer moved in one direction; many tendencies showed themselves on the fringes of free jazz. Besides Charles Mingus and Eric Dolphy, other, influenced by Horace Silver, John Coltrane, Miles Davis and Ornette Coleman (some recording under the Blue Note and Candid labels), declared themselves outside of any identifiable group. Musical Language advanced, feeding both the autonomy of the improviser and the emancipation of rhythm. The players of 'the new thing', involved in a political struggle, embraced their cultural heritage, but, in contrast, a large number of their contemporaries demanded the freedom to control, master and assimilate what they wanted from the cultural environment at large, from classical music to free jazz.

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Sonny Clark Sextet Blue Note LP


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