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Don Pullen

Don Pullen developed a surprisingly accessible way of performing avant-garde jazz. Although he could be quite free harmonically, with dense, dissonant chords, Pullen also utilized catchy rhythms, so even his freest flights generally had a handle for listeners to hang on to. The combination of freedom and rhythm gave him his own unique musical personality.

Pullen, who came from a musical family, studied with Muhal Richard Abrams (with whom he played in the Experimental Band) and, in 1964, made his recording debut with Giuseppi Logan. In the 1960s, he recorded free duets with Milford Graves, led his own bands, and played organ with R&B groups, backing Big Maybelle and Ruth Brown, among others. Although he worked with Nina Simone (1970-1971) and Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers (1974), Pullen became famous as the pianist with Charles Mingus' last great group (1973-1975). From 1979-1988, he co-led a notable inside/outside quartet with tenor saxophonist George Adams that was in some ways an extension of Mingus' band. In later years, Pullen led his African-Brazilian Connection and recorded with Kip Hanrahan, Roots, John Scofield, David Murray, Mingus Dynasty, and Jane Bunnett, among others. His last project found the always searching pianist seeking to fuse jazz with traditional Native American music. Although his life was too short, Don Pullen fortunately did make a fair amount of recordings as a leader, including for Sackville (1974), Horo, Black Saint, Atlantic (his funky "Big Alice" became a near-standard), and Blue Note. ~ Scott Yanow, Rovi
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Comments

sebhoffman
ive seen their group {adams pullen) suspend time live infuckencred i b l e
All good
excellent stuff/ love the swing - I am always lookin for good jazz
saw him play at NYU Student Center, late in 76. wonderful memory.
What a marvelous musician! Thanks, yet again, Pandora.
mym
My neighbor for a few years at 20 Seaman in NYC. A gentleman. Kind to me and my family. We will never forget he and Maurice.
Don Pullen's father, Don Q. Pullen wrote the Sweetheart Song for Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. Pullen and his father were members along with other notable names which include Bill Cosby, Jessie Jackson, Tom Joyner and Steve Harvey.
I saw him perform in Atlanta when he was in remission with cancer. He played with palpable passion and before I knew what was happening tears were running down my face and splashing on the floor. This also happened when Jessye Norman sang Amazing Grace at Symphony Hall during the '96 Olympics. Pullen embraced life powerfully in his music - especially when in his last years.
In the words of Mor Thiam, "Don Pullen, AHA!"

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Al Bass Blues Davis Dennis Detroit Drums Festival Funk Fusion George Goldings Guitar House Jazz Joe John Larry Live Lovano Miles Music Pat Rock Solo Soul Steve Stewart Swallow Techno Trio bill boerderij dave metheny pul
Never heard of this Guy but it sounds good...!!!!! ! I think I saw him on an old video with Charles Mingus Live at Monterey Jazz Festival back in the day!!!!! on one of channel 13. specials.... . . .

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