After stints at Juilliard and in the Army during the '40s, clarinetist Tony Scott rose to prominence in the '50s as a respected jazz soloist. His resumé at the time included work with Sarah Vaughan, Ben Webster, Dizzy Gillespie, Bill Evans, Billie Holiday, and Claude Thornhill, among many others. In addition to these sidemen dates, Scott also cut several solo albums. His subtle phrasing eventually found a perfect niche in the smattering of meditation and yoga dates he cut in the mid-'60s for Verve. Fueled by his burgeoning interest in Far Eastern culture, Scott hooked up with two Japanese master instrumentalists for this classic 1964 date. And while Scott, koto player Shinichi Yuize, and shakuhachi player Hozan Yamamoto produce nine cuts that sound classically Japanese and really nothing like jazz, they do actually improvise pretty much throughout the entire set. If you'd like to levitate to music with some unexpected twists, then Scott's Music for Zen Meditation is for you.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Cook