Ornette! is a free jazz album by alto saxophonist Ornette Coleman, recorded for the label Atlantic Records one month after the genre-defining Free Jazz: A Collective Improvisation.
Ornette! finds the leader on fire– coming off such a huge achievement, his working quartet (now consisting of trumpeter Don Cherry, bassist Scott LaFaro and drummer Ed Blackwell) entered the studio to record four new compositions.
Remarkably, this album seems to be a big step forward in performance from his earlier records. At a minimum, Don Cherry, who always seemed a bit fragile, is suddenly much more powerful and confident as a performer.
But the real star of the session is bassist Scott LaFaro. No slight against Charlie Haden, he’s a fantastic bass player, but LaFaro was a virtuoso performer of extraordinary ability, endurance, speed, and invention. His work throughout is nothing short of amazing, be it arco (his beautiful solo on “C. & D.”) or pizzicato (the jaw-dropping one on “W.R.U.”); agile and exciting and really beyond words).
The composition titles are derived from the works of Sigmund Freud. Featuring Don Cherry, Scott LaFaro, Ed Blackwell.
Original Label. Original Issue. Atlantic SD 1378. 1961. NM*****