Ornette Coleman

Opening the Caravan of Dreams

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Ornette Coleman's innovative Prime Time band is heard at the peak of its powers on this LP from the small Caravan of Dream label. The altoist/leader is the main voice throughout the otherwise very democratic ensembles, which feature guitarists Bern Nix and Charles Ellerbee, bassists Jamaaladeen Tacuma and Albert MacDowell, and drummers Denardo Coleman and Sabir Kamal. The six originals, which include such titles as "To Know What to Know," "Harmolodic Bebop" and "Sex Spy," feature dense ensembles, equal doses of dissonance and wit, and more than their share of high energy. This was the leading "free funk" band of the 1980s, and this LP, which is worth a search by open-eared listeners, gives one a definitive look into the group's unusual music.

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