Don Ellis

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Don Ellis At Fillmore album cover
3.00 | 2 ratings | 1 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Live, released in 1970

Songs / Tracks Listing

Final Analysis 13:59
Excursion II 5:44
The Magic Bus Ate My Doughnut 2:29
The Blues 7:25
Salvatore Sam 5:06
Rock Odyssey 9:48
Hey Jude 10:38
Antea 5:59
Old Man's Tear 4:53
Great Divide 8:42
Pussy Wiggle Stomp 11:54


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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

Don Ellis
trumpet, drums

Saxes & Woodwinds
Fred Selden
Lonnie Shetter
Sam Falzone
John Klemmer
Jon Clarke

Trumpets & Flugelhorns
Glenn Stuart
Stu Blumberg
John Rosenberg
Jack Coan
Ernie Carlson
Glenn Ferris
Don Switzer - bass trombone
Doug Bixby - contrabass trombone, tuba

Jay Graydon - guitar
Tom Garvin - piano
Dennis Parker - bass
Ralph Humphrey - drums
Ron Dunn - drums, percussion
Lee Pastora - conga

Releases information

2xLP CBS (Germany) / Columbia (US) (Columbia CG 30243, 1970)

re-released as 2 x CD by Wounded Bird Record (US) in 2005

Thanks to snobb for the addition
and to snobb for the last updates
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DON ELLIS At Fillmore ratings distribution

(2 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(0%)
Good, but non-essential (100%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
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DON ELLIS At Fillmore reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by js (Easy Money)
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Don Ellis and his big band turned the jazz world upside down in the mid to late 60s with experimental jazz that fused odd-metered rhythms, rock energy, exotic instruments and electronics in a big band setting. By the time we get to 1970 Ellis has seemingly cooled his jets a bit with some slightly more conservative releases until we get to this amazing blast of energy, Don Ellis at Fillmore. I'm not sure which is the ultimate Don Ellis album, but side one plus parts of three and four on this four sided release come pretty close. Side one opens with classic high energy Ellis with lots of percussion break downs and crazy ring modulator effects on Don's trumpet. The live versions of previous studio releases on here are almost unrecognizable as the tempos are so much faster and the playing is so much more intensely on the verge of chaos than on the studio releases.

This being a Don Ellis album there is some inevitable big band cheeze that might be difficult for someone with a rock background to appreciate. After side one's high speed chaos, side two starts off with more traditional big band fare on The Blues and carries on in this manner until the second half of Rock Odyssey (I know, it sounds like a Spinal Tap title) picks up the tempo a bit. Side three opens with Ellis playing his trumpet through an echoplex and ring modulator to create huge soundscapes on a level with Sun Ra and Stockhausen. From here perrenial studio guitarist and lounge meister supreme, Jay Graydon, enters with sarcastic psychedelic guitar and leads the band in a bizarre deconstructionist cover of Hey Jude complete with Zappasque polka sections and a big buildup tease that never quite happens. This side continues with some rockin moments mixed with sophisticated orchestrated ballad like moments. Side four opens with more big band fusion in odd-metered grooves, saxophonist Lonnie Shetter turns in a crazed solo on Great Divide that seems to channel the frenetic style of John Gilmore from Sun Ra's big band. The album closes with more Ellis classics played with renewed enthusiasm and almost avant-garde solos.

This is a big band album and very much for people who love jazz in many of its facets, but for the curious fusion/rocker who wants to hear the roots of bands like Soft Machine, Mahavishnu Orchestra, King Crimson and countless fusion bands, it all starts with Don Ellis in the mid-60s. There are a number of performers on here that went on to play in similar ensembles led by George Duke, Frank Zappa and Billy Cobham. In a sense, Ellis became a training ground for future jazz fusion mini-big bands


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