Astral Travelling (Gatefold - Colored Vinyl)
Lonnie Liston Smith
Real Gone Music
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Lonnie Liston Smith was 32 when, in 1973, he finally got around to recording his first album as a leader, Astral Traveling. By that time, the pianist/keyboardist had a great deal of sideman experience under his belt, and this superb debut made it clear that former employers like Pharoah Sanders, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Gato Barbieri, and Betty Carter had taught him well. One hears a lot of Sanders, John Coltrane, and McCoy Tyner influence on Astral Traveling; Smith obviously shares their passion for all things spiritual. Nonetheless, this LP leaves no doubt that the improviser is very much his own man and has a wealth of brilliant ideas of his own; thankfully, he has a cohesive band to help him carry them out.
New York, 1973