Ornette Coleman and Prime Time – Live Under the Sky, Japan, 1986
Ornette Coleman, like Miles Davis before him, took to playing with electrified instruments. The 1976 album Dancing in Your Head, Coleman’s first recording with the group which later became known as Prime Time, prominently featured electric guitars. While this marked a stylistic departure for Coleman, the music maintained certain similarities to his earlier work. These performances had the same angular melodies and simultaneous group improvisations – what Joe Zawinul referred to as “nobody solos, everybody solos” and what Coleman called harmolodics – and although the nature of the pulse was altered, Coleman’s own rhythmic approach did not.
Randolph Denard Ornette Coleman (March 9, 1930[dubious – discuss] – June 11, 2015) was an American jazz saxophonist, violinist, trumpeter, and composer. He was one of the major innovators of the free jazz movement of the 1960s, a term he invented with the name of his 1961 album. His “Broadway Blues” has become a standard and has been cited as a key work in the free jazz movement. He was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 1994. His album Sound Grammar received the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for music.