Sparks

Sparks is the musical partnership of American keyboardist–songwriter Ron Mael and his vocalist brother Russell Mael. They first recorded as Halfnelson, a quintet with drummer Harley Feinstein and another set of brothers, guitarist Earle Mankey and guitarist–bassist Jim Mankey. They signed to Bearsville for the 1971 release Halfnelson, produced by Todd Rundgren. Soon after, they […]

Chicago

Chicago are an American band formed in 1967; noted as one of the first rock acts with an integrated three-piece brass section. Between 1969 and 1980, they released twelve studio albums on Columbia, followed by five albums on Warner. For eleven years, they maintained the same seven members: keyboardist–singer Robert Lamm, guitarist–singer Terry Kath, bassist–singer […]

Return to Forever

Return to Forever was an American jazz-rock supergroup that evolved from a namesake 1972 solo album by bandleader Chick Corea. Members: Chick Corea (keyboards), Stanley Clarke (bass), Joe Farrell (reeds, 1971-73, 1977), Airto Moreira (percussion, 1971-73), Flora Purim (vocals, 1971-73), Bill Connors (guitar, 1973-74), Steve Gadd (drums, 1973), Mingo Lewis (percussion, 1973), Lenny White (drums, […]

Daryl Hall & John Oates

Daryl Hall and John Oates — commonly known as Hall & Oates — are an American musical duo that have been active since the early 1970s. The pair initially recorded in an acoustic singer/songwriter mode but soon embraced maximalist-rock experimentation and the lavish orchestralism of their Philly townfolk. Applying their signature vocal trade-offs to a […]

Todd Rundgren

Todd Rundgren (born June 22, 1948) is an American vocalist, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, bandleader, and producer, originally from Philadelphia. He first emerged in psych-rockers the Nazz, which released two proper albums in 1968–69. He initially recorded solo under the band moniker Runt, issuing the 1970/71 Bearsville albums Runt and The Ballad of Todd Rundgren. Under his […]

Boz Scaggs

Boz Scaggs is an American vocalist, musician, and songwriter who emerged in the late-sixties incarnation of the Steve Miller Band and went solo with a 1969 Atlantic album. Between 1970 and 1988, he released eight albums on Columbia. His popularity peaked with the 1976–80 albums Silk Degrees, Down Two Then Left, and Middle Man. Scaggs […]

Utopia

Utopia was an American maximalist-rock band that released six studio albums and a live disc on Bearsville between 1974 and 1982, followed by three further albums on Network and Passport. The band was formed by musician/producer Todd Rundgren and initially featured a six man lineup, as heard on Todd Rundgren’s Utopia (1974). By the time […]

Gas Mask

Gas Mask was an American brass-rock band from N.Y.C. that released one album, Their First Album, on Tonsil Records in 1970. Members: Bill Davidson (lead guitar), Richard Grando (winds), David Gross (saxophone), Nick Oliva (keyboards), Bobby Osborne (vocals), Enrico Rava (trumpet), James Strassburg (drums), Ray Brooks (bass, ?-1970), Lynn Welshman (trombone, 1970-?), Michael Moore (bass, […]

Sleepy Hollow

Sleepy Hollow was an American art-pop trio from Philadelphia that released a self-titled album in 1972 on the Family Productions label. Members: Richard Billay (lead vocals, guitar, piano), Richie Bremen (bass), Joe Zucca (drums) Background Sleepy Hollow formed in Philadelphia, where singer and songwriter Richard Billay teamed with bassist Richie Bremen and drummer Joe Zucca. […]

Second Coming

The Second Coming was a nine-member American brass-rock band that released a self-titled album on Mercury in 1970. Members: Jack Kramer (trumpet, bugle, trombone, background vocals), Buddy Stephens (trumpet, lead vocals), Bill Dinwiddie (trombone, percussion, background vocals), Rick Rudolph (alto saxophone, baritone saxophone, alto flute, trombone), Les King (drums, congas, percussion, timpani), Dave Miller (Hammond […]

Pages

Pages were an American adult-oriented rock band from Los Angeles that released the 1978–79 albums Pages and Future Street. Mainstays Richard Page and Steve George made a third album (also titled Pages) in 1981 on Capitol. They later co-founded Mr. Mister. Members: Steve George (keyboards, vocals), Richard Page (vocals, piano, clavinet, guitar), John Lang (lyrics) […]

Zazu

Zazu was an American rock band from Chicago that released a self-titled album in 1975 on Wooden Nickel. Members: Randy Curlee (bass, vocals), Mickey Lehockey (drums), John Melnick (keyboards, vocals), Paul Ripurero (guitar, vocals) Background Zazu formed in Chicago when keyboardist–composer John Melnick teamed with guitarist Paul Ripurero, bassist Randy Curlee, and drummer Mickey Lehockey. […]

Yezda Urfa

Yezda Urfa was an American symphonic|art-rock band that self-pressed 300 copies of their 1975 demo album, Boris. In 1976, they recorded a proper album and shopped it to multiple labels. It finally appeared as an archival disc, Sacred Baboon, in 1989 on Syn-Phonic. Members: Brad Christoff (drums, tubular bells, metallophone, percussion), Phil Kimbrough (keyboards, accordion, […]

Ethos

Ethos was an American Midwest symphonic-rock band that released the 1976/77 albums Ardour and Open Up on Capitol. A collection of their early demos later appeared on the CD Relics. Members: Wil Sharpe (guitar, mandolin, vocals), Michael Ponczek (keyboards), Mark Richards (drums, percussion), Dan Owen (bass, vocals, 1973), Stevie Marra (bass, flute, vocals, 1974-75), Brad […]

Trillion

Trillion was an American AOR|hard-rock band that released the 1978–80 Epic albums Trillion and Clear Approach. Members: Fergie Frederiksen (vocals, 1978-79), Thom Griffin (vocals, guitar), Frank Barbalace (guitar), Ron Anaman (bass), Patrick Leonard (keyboards), Bill Wilkins (drums) Background Trillion had its roots in Whisper, a Chicago bar band formed in 1976 with keyboardist Patrick Leonard, […]

Baby Grand

Baby Grand was an American rock band from Philadelphia that released the 1977–78 Arista albums Baby Grand and Ancient Medicine. Guitarist–singer Eric Bazilian and keyboardist–songwriter Rob Hyman formed subsequent hitmakers The Hooters. Members: Eric Bazilian (guitar, vocals), Rob Hyman (keyboards, vocals), David Kagan (vocals), David Prater (drums, 1978-79), Carmine Rojas (bass, 1978-79) Background Baby Grand […]

Johnny Hammond

Johnny Hammond (aka Johnny Smith, Dec. 16, 1933 — June 4, 1997) was an American jazz keyboardist who debuted in 1958 with a solo organ album as Johnny Smith. Adopting the name Johnny “Hammond” Smith, he released three soul-jazz albums on Prestige-subsidiary New Jazz in 1959/60, then switched to Prestige for 16 further albums between […]

Steely Dan

Steely Dan was an American jazz-rock/pop band that released six studio albums on ABC between 1972 and 1977, followed by an eighth on MCA in 1980. After a 20-year break in recording, they issued two discs of new material during the early 2000s. Debuting as a six-piece, the lineup trimmed by 1975 to the duo […]

Space Opera

Space Opera was an American rustic-rock band from Fort Worth, Tex., that released a self-titled album on Epic in 1973. Five years earlier, three-fourths of the band cut a folk-rock album as Whistler, Chaucer, Detroit & Greenhill. Members: David Bullock (vocals, flute, harmonica, guitar), Scott Fraser (vocals, guitar, keyboards), Philip White (vocals, bass, guitar, keyboards), […]

Airplay

Airplay were an American studio-based melodic-rock combo that released a self-titled album on RCA in 1980. The project was headed by writer/producers David Foster and Jay Graydon, both successful with other acts at the time. Members: David Foster (keyboards, vocals), Tommy Funderburk (vocals), Jay Graydon (guitars) David Foster, Jay Graydon Credits Airplay was assembled by […]

A Euphonious Wail

A Euphonious Wail were an American soul-rock band from Santa Rosa, Calif., that released a self-titled album on Kapp Records in 1973. Members: Suzanne Rey (percussion, vocals), Bart Libby (organ, piano), Steve Tracy (guitar, vocals), Gary Violetti (bass, vocals), Doug Huffman (drums, vocals) A Euphonious Wail formed in 1968 and played the west coast acid-rock […]

Babylon

Babylon was an American symphonic-rock band from Florida that released an eponymous album on self-press Mehum in 1978. The band morphed into Helicopter for a further self-issued title, Insect Perfect, in 1981. Members: Rick Leonard (bass, vocals, bass pedals), Doroccus (lead vocals, synthesizer, electric piano), Rodney Best (drums, percussion), David Boyko (guitar), Gary Chambers (synthesizer, […]

Stray Dog

Stray Dog was an American hard-rock band from Fort Worth, Tex., that released two albums on Manticore in 1973 and 1974. Members: W.G. Snuffy Walden (guitar, vocals), Les Sampson (drums), Al Roberts (bass, vocals), Timmy Dulaine (guitar, vocals, 1974-76), Luis Cabaza (keyboards, 1974-76) Background Stray Dog evolved from the unrecorded an ’70s power-trio called Aphrodite. […]

Mirthrandir

Mirthrandir were an American symphonic-rock band from New Jersey that issued the album For You the Old Women on self-press Mirth Music Inc. in 1976. Members: Robert Arace (drums), Richard Excellente (guitar), Simon Gannett (keyboards), James Miller (bass, flute), Alexander Romanelli (guitar), John Vislocky III (vocals, trumpet), John Callahan (guitar) Mirthrandir formed in New Jersey […]

Quill

Quill were an American symphonic-rock trio that self-released the album Sursum Corda in 1977. Members: Keith Christian (vocals, bass, classical guitar), Ken DeLoria (Hammond organ, Moog, Mellotron, electric harpsichord, grand piano, ARP Solina string synthesizer, keyboards), Jim Sides (vocals, drums, bells, tubular bells, timpani) Quill formed in California in 1975. Their 1977 singular album, Sursum […]

Forty-Seven Times Its Own Weight

Forty-Seven Times Its Own Weight were an American jazz-rock band from Austin that released the album Cumulo Nimbus on local-press Fable Records in 1975. Members: Mel Winters (trumpet), Paul Ostermayer (saxophone), Robert “Dude” Skiles (keyboards), Spencer Starnes (bass), John Treanor (drums) Forty-Seven Times Its Own Weight released their singular album, Cumulo Nimbus, on Fable Records […]

Auracle

Auracle was an American jazz-rock band that released two albums on Chrysalis in 1978 and 1979. The members released an earlier album as Inner Vision. Along with The Muffins and Pierre Moerlen’s Gong, Auracle were one of the few instrumental acts of this period to make extensive use of mallets. Members: Richard C. Braun (trumpet, […]

Eardance

Eardance was an American art-rock band from Chicago that released the album Seek Opposites on self-press Touch Records in 1982. The album is one of the earliest to feature extensive use of the Chapman Stick, played by multi-instrumentalist/bandleader Jim Jacobsen, who later became a soundtrack composer. Members: Jim Jacobsen (bass, guitar, Chapman Stick, clarinet, synthesizer, […]

Ramon Morris

Ramon Morris is an American jazz-funk saxophonist who was briefly active during the early 1970s. Debuting in a latter-day incarnation of Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, Morris quickly spread his talents over 1972–73 releases by Reuben Wilson, Curtis Fuller, Shirley Scott, and Woody Shaw — credits that afforded him a one-off deal with Groove […]

Travis Biggs

Travis Biggs is an American composer, producer, and multi-instrumentalist whose services were widely employed on the jazz-funk and soul circuits throughout the 1970s and early 1980s. Under his own name, he released two albums during the late 1970s. Spreading his talents over sides by John Kasandra and Bohannon, among others, Biggs adopted the little-used nickname […]

Hubert Eaves

Hubert Eaves is an American keyboardist, composer, and producer who played on numerous jazz-funk and soul recordings during the 1970s and ’80s. As a bandleader, he released the coveted Esoteric Funk LP in 1977. A home-taught musician, the St. Paul prodigy emerged as sideman to Gary Bartz as part of the saxist’s NTU Troop on […]

Webster Lewis

Webster Lewis (Sept. 1, 1943 — Nov. 20, 2002) was an American keyboardist and producer who released five albums between 1972 and 1981. Sporting a master’s degree from the New England Conservatory of Music, the Baltimore-raised pianist/organist hit the scene in 1972 with spots on the Bill Evans/George Russell Living Time LP and on a […]

New York Mary

New York Mary was an instrumental jazz-rock trio that was active in the Northeast U.S. during the mid-1970s, releasing two albums on Arista’s Freedom imprint in 1976. Members: Bruce Johnstone (baritone/alto/soprano sax), Rick Petrone (bass), Joe Corsello (drums, percussion) Saxophonist Bruce Johnstone and bassist Rick Petrone played in Maynard Ferguson’s backing band during the earlier […]

Happy the Man

Happy the Man is an American symphonic-rock band that released the 1977–78 Arista albums Happy the Man and Craft Hands, both comprised of lavish, intricate pieces (mostly instrumental). Their near-completed 1979 third album appeared posthumously in 1983 as 3rd – “Better Late…” Keyboardist Ken Watkins joined Camel for their 1979 album I Can See Your […]

Sons and Daughters of Lite

Sons and Daughters of Lite were an American jazz-funk ensemble from Oakland, Calif, that released the album Let the Sun Shine In on self-press Sunlite Record Publishing Company in 1978. Members: Basuki Bala (leader, baritone saxophone, alto saxophone, soprano saxophone, flute, percussion, vocals), Marty Payne (trumpet, flugelhorn, backing vocals), Paul Fenner III (tenor saxophone), Michael […]

Robin Kenyatta

Robin Kenyatta (March 6, 1942 — Oct. 26, 2004) is an American jazz-funk saxophonist from Moncks Corner, SC. Discography: Until (1968) Girl From Martinique (1971) Robin Kenyatta’s Free State Band (1972) Gypsy Man (1973) Terra Nova (1973) Stompin’ at the Savoy (1974) Nomusa (1975) Encourage the People (1976) Beggars and Stealers (live, 1977) Take the […]

Robert Watson

Robert Watson — aka Robert M. Watson Jr. (born Aug. 23, 1953) — is an American post-bop/jazz-funk alto saxophonist from Lawrence, Kan. Discography: Estimated Time of Arrival (1978) All Because of You (1979) Beatitudes (1983 • Bobby Watson & Curtis Lundy) Gumbo (1983 • The Horizon Quintet) Jewel (1983 • Robert Watson Sextet) Live in […]

Tom Harrell

Tom Harrell (born June 16, 1946) is an American jazz-funk trumpeter from Urbana, Ill. Discography: Aurora (1976) Look to the Sky (1979 • John McNeil & Tom Harrell) Open Air (1987) Stories (1988) Sail Away (1989) Form (1990) Moon Alley (1990 • Tom Harrell Quintet) Passages (1992) Upswing (1993) Labyrinth (1996) The Art of Rhythm […]

Art Webb

Art Webb is an American flautist primarily active as a jazz-funk sessionist during the 1970s and 1980s. Under his own name he released two albums in 1977. Appearing first on back-to-back albums by Norman Connors — Dance of Magic (1972) and Dark of Light (1973) — Webb’s talents were soon heard on the recordings of […]

Milton Wright

Milton Wright is an American soul-funk musician, songwriter, and producer who released two albums on Atlantic-subsidiary Alston between 1975 and 1977. He is the brother of soul singer Betty Wright. Discography: Friends and Buddies (1975) “I Belong to You” / “The Gallop” (1976 • Milton Wright & The Terra Shirma Strings) “Ooh, Ooh, Ooh I […]

Julian Priester

Julian Priester — aka Pepo Mtoto (June 29, 1935) — is an American trombonist from Chicago, Ill. Discography: Keep Swingin’ (1960) Spiritsville (1960) Love, Love (1974 • Julian Priester Pepo Mtoto) Polarization (1977 • Julian Priester and Marine Intrusion) Koputai (1990 • Ralph Towner, Charlie Haden, Jerry Granelli, Julian Priester, Robben Ford, Denny Goodhew & […]

Lightmen Plus One

Lightmen Plus One were an American jazz-funk band that released two albums on Judnell circa 1970/71, followed by two further albums on bandleader Bubba Thomas’ Lightin’ Records between 1972 and 1975. Members: – Discography: Free as You Wanna Be (1970 • The Lightmen) Fancy Pants (1971) Energy Control Center (1972) Country Fried Chicken (1975 • […]

Weather Report

Weather Report was a multinational jazz-funk/fusion ensemble that released 14 studio albums on Columbia between 1971 and 1986. Throughout its existence, the band was co-led by American saxophonist Wayne Shorter and Austrian keyboardist Joe Zawinul. Numerous rhythm players did stints with the band during its 15-year history, most notably drummers Alphonse Mouzon and Narada Michael […]

Wayne Shorter

Wayne Shorter (Aug. 25, 1933 — March 2, 2003) was an American saxophonist from Newark, N.J., who co-led the jazz-funk supergroup Weather Report with Austrian keyboardist Joe Zawinul between 1971 and 1985. Discography: Introducing Wayne Shorter (1960) Wayning Moments (1962) Night Dreamer (1964) Juju (1965) Speak No Evil (1966) The All Seeing Eye (1966) Adam’s […]

The Mysterious Flying Orchestra

The Mysterious Flying Orchestra were an American jazz-funk big band that recorded a self-titled album for RCA in 1977. Members: Bob Thiele (conductor, composition, percussion), Phil Bodner (tenor saxophone, English horn), Babe Clarke (baritone saxophone), Eddie Daniels (flute, tenor saxophone), Steve Marcus (soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone), Charlie Mariano (soprano saxophone), Bob Mintzer (tenor saxophone), Donald […]

Tip of the Iceberg

Tip of the Iceberg were an American jazz-funk big band that released a self-titled album on Project 3 Records in 1975. Members: Derek Smith (electric piano, clavinet), Albie Berk (drums), Russel George (bass), Tony Mottola (electric guitar, guitar), Don Albano (electric guitar, vocals), Sue Evans (percussion), Phil Kraus (percussion), George Young (tenor saxophone, flute, fife, […]

The Eleventh House

The Eleventh House was an American jazz-funk-rock supergroup led by guitarist Larry Coryell. They issued a self-titled album on Vanguard in 1974, followed by the 1975–1976 Arista albums Level One and Aspects. Noted participants included drummer Alphonse Mouzon, keyboardist Mike Mandel, and trumpeters Randy Brecker and Terumasa Hino. Members: Larry Coryell (guitar), Randy Brecker (trumpet, […]

The Crusaders

The Crusaders were an American jazz-funk band from Los Angeles that was known throughout its first decade as The Jazz Crusaders, which issued a string of post-bop albums on Pacific Jazz during the 1960s. In 1971, they shortened their name to The Crusaders and issued a string of jazz-funk/R&B albums on Blue Thumb. They scored […]

The Brecker Brothers

The Brecker Brothers were an American jazz-funk duo from N.Y.C. comprised of saxophonist Michael Brecker and trumpeter Randy Brecker, who played on numerous recordings together and separately throughout the 1970s and 1980s. Members: Randy Brecker (trumpet), Michael Brecker (saxophone) Discography: The Brecker Bros. (1975) Back to Back (1976) Don’t Stop the Music (1977) Blue Montreux […]

The 360 Degree Music Experience

The 360 Degree Music Experience were an American avant-jazz ensemble that released six albums on assorted labels between 1975 and 1984, including several that give featured status to drummer/bandleader Beaver Harris. Members: Beaver Harris (drums), Grachan Moncur III (trombone), Dave Burrell (piano), Ken McIntyre (saxophone), Cameron Brown (piano), Ron Burton (bass) Discography: From Rag Time […]

Ten Wheel Drive

Ten Wheel Drive was an American brass-rock band from New Jersey that released three albums on Polydor between 1969 and 1971, followed by a fourth on Capitol in 1973. Members: Genya Ravan (vocals, harmonica, tambourine), Aram Schefrin (guitar, vocals, banjo, percussion), Michael Zager (organ, piano, clarinet), Annie Sutton (vocals, 1973-74) Ten Wheel Drive was formed […]

Tarika Blue

Tarika Blue were a New York-based, multi-national jazz-funk/soul collective that was active during the late 1970s. Premiering in a strictly instrumental framework, the band incorporated vocals on their second of two albums. Members: Phil Clendennin (keyboards, piano), Ryo Kawasaki (electric guitar), Barry Coleman (bass), Kevin Atkins (drums), Marvin Blackman (tenor saxophone), Bradie Speller (percussion), Justo […]