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Eddie Henderson

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Eddie Henderson Realization album cover
4.64 | 43 ratings | 6 reviews | 40% 5 stars

Essential: a masterpiece of
progressive rock music

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Studio Album, released in 1973

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Scorpio-Libra (11:12)
2. Mars in Libra (8:40)
3. Anua (8:30)
4. Spiritual Awakening (2:33)
5. Revelation Realization (8:00)

Total Time: 38:55

Line-up / Musicians

- Eddie Henderson / trumpet, cornet, flugelhorn

- Bennie Maupin / flutes, saxes, bass clarinet
- Herbie Hancock / Fender Rhodes & Univox electric pianos
- Pat Gleeson / ARP & Moog synthesizers, organ
- Buster Williams / bass
- Lenny White / drums
- Billy Hart / drums, percussion

Releases information

Artwork: Bruce Steinberg

LP Capricorn Records ‎- CP 0118 (1973, US)

Thanks to Logan for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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EDDIE HENDERSON Realization ratings distribution

(43 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(40%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(37%)
Good, but non-essential (21%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

EDDIE HENDERSON Realization reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Logan
5 stars With a careless misclick of the button, I lost a very long and detailed review. This one will be shorter (not Wayne Shorter, though he is also excellent), or at least less detailed. I would not have guessed that it would have taken "Realization" to realize the importance of writing such stuff first using a program such as Word which saves one's wordiness.

"Realization" is my favourite Eddie Henderson album, one of my favourite "Mwandishi players" albums, and I consider it to be an essential Fusion album. The music blends funk, modal jazz, and cosmic "spacey" music/ electronics, in an exhilarating fashion. It is finely nuanced, and while the music is very busy at times, there is space for the music to breathe. It is a stunning effort by Eddie Henderson, as well as those that joined him.

All of the players are in top-notch form, and Henderson is, I think, one of the finest trumpeters in Fusion -- sadly he is not as widely recognised as I think he deserves. To think that music was a side-line for him as he was also a medical doctor. This album, and other albums of his, was not commercially successful at the time, and was largely forgotten and neglected until the later release on CD (his "Anthology" compilation with this and "Inside Out" has been excellently remastered and is well worth getting), There has been some quite recent surge in interest in Henderson's early music by dubbers. His music has been sampled quite extensively -- rub-a-dub-dubbed by DJ George "Dubya" Bush; now there's a thought, lame though it is. In fact, a great many terrific Fusion works are being sampled/ dubbed these days).

This album comes from a really innovative and exciting time in Fusion, and stands, I feel, amongst the very best of its ilk. Other players that Henderson was acquainted with, including the Mwandishi band (see Herbie Hancock's "Mwandishi", "Crossings", and "Sextant") were also releasing amazing material. I see this album as a spin-off or extension of the "Mwandishi" work, and this is a "Mwandishi" band effort (which is not to underplay Henderson's importance to the project under his name). Aside from shared members who came together to work with the former Mwadishi member Henderson, musically it falls into that category. Aside from Hancock's influence (as well as other Mwandishi members), I think Gleeson's work cannot be understated in giving it that cohesive Mwandishi sound (as in the "Crossings" and "Sextant" parts of the Mwandishi album trilogy -- the fusion of electronics).

This is an absolutely essential album for those who like Herbie Hancock and friends Mwandishi trilogy. Aside from "Crossings", "Sextant", and "Mwandishi", albums with a musical relation to "Realization" worth getting include: - Eddie Henderson - "Inside Out" (if you don't have Anthology, Vol. II), and "Sunburst". - Julian Priester's fantastic "Love, Love" and his "Polarization". - Bennie Maupin - "The Jewel in the Lotus" and "Slow Traffic to the Right". - Buster Williams - Pinnacle. and Norman Connors - "Dance of Magic" and "Dark of Light".

Lenny White, who performed on this album, released to my mind one of the most stunning Fusion albums with "Venusian Summer", though he has other excellent works too. Billy Hart's "Enchance is good", and, though different, Pat Gleeson's electronic explorations in "Beyond the Sun" are very good.

Of course mentors to Henderson such as Miles Davis and Freddie Hubbard should need no introduction, but if they both do, you have wonderful discoveries ahead.

A word of warning: I don't recommend "Realization" to those who can't take their jazz more adventurous than Kenny G.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars I became aware of this project by Eddie Henderson through of one of Logan's polls.Thankyou again Logan. I must admit I was surprised to see the lineup on this album, I mean it's the same "Mwandishi" band lineup that released 3 albums under Herbie Hancock's name. The only difference here is that Eddie is calling the shots, although both Hancock and Maupin composed tracks here as well. There's no question the style of music here is of the same spirit as those 3 "Mwandishi" albums, plus throw in a Miles Davis flavour and you can imagine how good this is. I should mention that drummer Lenny White is the only non-Mwandishi member playing on this record. Man this is adventerous music though. Pat Gleeson with his crazy synth work along with Henderson and Maupin blasting away on their horns. Herbie adds electric piano, clavinet and organ.The drumming is outstanding and the bass is right in your face at all times.

"Scorpio-Libra" opens with cymbals, bass and keyboards as horns blow over top.The sound becomes pretty intense. Check out the drums and bass 6 minutes in. Spacey synths end it. This music is so hard to describe because it's ever changing as different instruments come and go. "Mars In Libra" opens with chunky bass, drums and horns standing out. Check out Maupin and Henderson going at it. So much going on here. How intense is this 3 minutes in. Synths follow.

"Anua" is the first non-Henderson composition.This was created by Maupin. It's laid back to start and takes a while to get going. Flute here too. Horns and synths eventually change this mood. Piano comes to the fore 4 1/2 minutes in. The synths are crazy. It turns back to that laid back sound to end it. Cool tune. "Spiritual Awakening" is a short 2 1/2 minute tune that is spacey with horns coming in later. "Revelation Realization" is Herbie's composition. Horns, bass, drums and spacey synths lead the way. A spacey calm settles in around 5 minutes and stays to the end.

Easily 4 stars.The more I concentrate on this music the more impressed I get.

Review by snobb
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars I honestly believe Hancock's "Mwandishi" Trilogy's albums are possibly the best jazz fusion recordings ever. "Realiztion" is the album ,played by the same Hancock's Mwandishi team, with RTF drummer Lenny White only added. The main difference between albums released under Hancock's name and Eddie Henderson's solo is that there on this album Eddie is soloing trumpeter on the front of the sound.

Music in general is very in Mwandishi key with spacey keyboards, slightly psychedelic sound, excellent musicianship of all collaborators (including great Lenny White drumming) and Miles Davis inspired Eddie Henderson trumpet soloing. In fact, you can think about this album's music as Mwandishi with soloing trumpeter recordings.

The time is right for such experimental jazz fusion, and all musicians are on the top of their technical and artistic form. So - you have there absolutely great album, must have release for any listener, interested in best ever jazz fusion music for his collection.Masterpiece!

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Realization is the first of two Eddie Henderson albums that were recorded by the Mwandishi band, known from Herbie Hancock's highly acclaimed early 70s albums. Only the drummer got substituted. The music is very similar to that on Crossings and Sextant , and features very elaborate psychedelic jazz fusion.

The main difference with the albums released under Hancock's name is the focus on Henderson's trumpet playing. Clearly influenced by Miles Davis, Henderson blows our breath away with his emotional strikes and stabs on the instrument, expressing pain as easily as joy or sadness. The rhythm section provides a very involved and engaging backbone, that, just like the Hancock albums, borders on funk but is still too complex and stubborn to groove as easily as later and more accessible mid 70s fusion albums.

Talking about gems, this one takes the cake. And best of all it's easy and cheap to get as it is paired with Henderson's other Mwandishi album Realization on one CD that I bough for a mere 6.55£. Easily my best bargain in years.

Review by Guldbamsen
5 stars Urban space funk fusion

In keeping with my recent crush on all things Mwandishi, I thought it was about time Eddie Henderson received his fair slice of the pie. I think it rather strange, that albums such as Sextant and Crossings are held in high esteem - both of them ornamenting the top 20 of the fusion chart, when Realization, whilst still boasting the same players ie Herbie Hancock, Billy Hart, Bennie Maupin, Pat Gleeson, Buster Williams, and Lenny White - gets next to nothing in terms of marketing. The fact of the matter is, that just like many other people who visit the forum here, I too learned of this album through Greg(Logan. The man with a thing for Sean Connery in red leather), who has been promoting this record ever since the battle of Waterloo.

For those of you who are into the Mwandishi sound, that is highly experimental fusion not unlike that you'd encounter on a Miles Davis album from around the same time, then you should be placing your order of this one right now. Realization is undeniably part of the big powerful and abstract boom of skilled jazz musicians breaching out in whatever psych/funk/rock constellation that sounded good to them. It's deep jungle music this - it throws you into the hot perspiring trance mode - jigging, swaying, bouncing and bobbing. Especially on this very release, you get the gist of what Herbie later on would crystallize in form of Head Hunters. The funky feel just shines through - making Realization one of the more easy approachable Mwandishi albums - at least according to my ears. Though not entirely funk per se, the way the drums and bass intertwine, compliment each other and just flat out zoom, writhe, contort and heave the actual rhythm side of things is downright masterly.

The trumpet of Henderson is easy recognisable. It stutters majestically on top of the proceedings - cockadooodling wildly over the music like an inspired rooster at sun-dawn. All through Realization the trumpet is never far away, either spreading some light whispering notes over loosely played electric piano bits - or up front in your face pachyderm warning calls. Teamed up with a definitively more spacey expression than Maupin's Jewel in the Lotus - much credited to Gleeson's murky and worming electronics, Realization roams an altogether different part of this band's explorations. It isn't as avant guarde as the former though, which again points towards my initial thoughts about Realization: This one should indeed be a no-brainer, if one is considering checking out a Mwandishi record. It is by far the most welcoming of the lot - even more so than Crossings.

If any of you people should feel interested in trying out fusion with a distinctive spacey funk vibe to it - one that is performed by some of the most gifted musicians, then Realization is an easy bet. I listen to it whilst driving, chilling, making dinner, working out - or just when I'm making my way down the streets of the city, highly intoxicated by the wondrous kick I get out of this urban jungle music flowing through my body, all the while I'm sniffing in the cool of the night, the smell of gasoline - bobbing along to the city beat like a real life McCoy hooked on jazz rock and the starry night city groove.

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Recorded in the Winter of 1973 (February 27 & 28), this was recorded with Herbie Hancock's sitting Septet before its disbandment.

1. "Scorpio-Libra" (11:12) opens immediately with a funky Isaac Hayes "Shaft"/Bitches Brew pretentiousness that is immediately winning due to its cocky arrogance. It's spacey yet still jazzy, free form but mapped out, and full of musicians sounding like they're really having fun. Patrick Gleeson's play on synths and organ sounds so loose and liberating and I LOVE the two drummers! Billy and Lenny both bringing their best, playing with and off of one another. Herbie, of course, is so solid on the Fender Rhodes but he's mixed a little too far into the background (until his solo in the seventh minute). And Bennie Maupin and Eddie just playing their hearts out. Great stuff! (18.5/20)

2. "Mars in Libra" (8:40) sounds very much like the same foundation as the previous song with much wilder performances from the soloists, more dynamic and independent energy from the drummers. Space music in which the pioneers are exploring deep dimensions of the universe. I can tell the boys are having their fun but I personally find that I'm kind of done with Buster Williams' bass line that's holding it all together. Then it all just kind of ends: no ceremony or gravitas just ... done! Weird. (17.5/20)

3. "Anua" (8:30) opens with bass and drums, long-sustained flue and keyboard notes with crazy-wind synth sounds flying around just beneath the surface. Eddie's muted and unmuted horn joins in, takes the lead as the band solidifies its support beneath. It's a beautiful weave of full whole-band chords with incredible leadership from Buster Williams' double bass. The dreaminess of the foundational music reminds me of Freddy Henderson's Love Connection a few years down the road as well as many of the Crusader's Joe Sample's and Huber Laws' solo albums from the time. Beautiful stuff that could easily exist without the soloists on top--thought there are some dreamy solos in the seventh and eighth minutes. (despite the drums getting a bit drowned out by the cymbal play). (19/20)

4. "Spiritual Awakening" (2:33) synth-generated "water"/"bird" noises over which Eddie ejaculates his horn and riffs while the rest of the band just floats and flit in and out of the sonic field. (4.375/5)

5. "Revelation Realization" (8:00) really smooth night groove from the bass with double horn tracks on top and the two drums and keys pushed way down in the mix. I know this gives the listener much greater access to the fine bass and horn play, but then we have to listen that much harder to pick up the nuances of the two amazing drummers. Fender Rhodes and Bennie Maupin's bass clarinet get brought forward somewhere in the third minute. Everybody (except Pat Gleeson's continued synth play with constantly panning water and wind sounds) is contributing some truly beautiful melodies. So nice. The dénouement is long (almost 2:30) and a bit too drawn out for my tastes. A weird but, at the same time, wonderful song. (13.75/15)

Total Time: 38:55

I know that one of the reasons I like this album and its successor, Inside Out--as well as the last two of the Mawndishi albums, Crossings and Sextet--is due to the presence and influence of synthesizer expert Patrick Gleeson. Patrick's contributions to Lenny White's Venusian Summer--making that five out of the twop 30 albums in Classic Era Jazz-Rock Fusion--make me think that his genius plays no small factor in my coming over to Jazz-Rock Fusion 1972-75.

A-/five stars; a minor masterpiece of spacey jazz-rock from the Mwandishi lineup.

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