Talk:Jazz fusion

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Electric bass vs. Bass guitar[edit]

I've reverted the reference to electric bass back to bass guitar. The main reason for the preference is that it avoids a redirect page (electric bass > bass guitar), thus conserving Wikipedia and bandwidth resources. I think it also better represents the family of instruments, tuned as a bass but modelled on the shape of guitars, that tended to be used in jazz fusion, but I think efficient use of resources is the clinching issue. Basswulf 09:52, 8 Aug 2003 (UTC)

I'll defer to your judgement on the Wiki technical issues. I do think electric bass is more useful within the context of the article because electrification (more than the shape of the instrument) is part of what differentiated fusion from previous forms (many of which included some form of bass). Jgm 14:28, 8 Aug 2003 (UTC)

As someone who prefers to think of himself as a bassist rather than a bass guitarist, in some ways I'd prefer to see the bass article called electric bass rather than bass guitar. However, that then raises issues about where acoustic bass guitars fit - probably best in that article, even though they are not necessarily electrified in any way. What you could do is make a reference to the electric bass guitar if you feel that "...electric guitar, bass guitar ..." doesn't do it justice. Basswulf 16:11, 8 Aug 2003 (UTC)
Ah, the penny has just dropped for me that bass guitar is, indeed, distinct from (or at least a subset of) "bass", and that saying that the new form used "bass guitar" does imply a change from more traditional jazz. And I see the dilemma Since acoustic bass guitars are fairly rare I tend to agree with you that the bass guitar article should probably have been titled electric bass. To me this is the kind of situation redirects are made for, but given your concern about that I can live with the article the way it is, or the substitution you suggest, equally comforatably.

Jgm 20:09, 8 Aug 2003 (UTC)

Although the above conversation is from way back, I'd like to add my own observations - not original research 'cos it's not included in the article as such - but going on what my double bass playing friends were saying at the time. The term electric bass is possibly a more logical progression for those jazz musicians who switched from the double bass to what is now considered a bass guitar by people who may never even have seen a double bass. I remember a lot of bass players (I don't know of a single musician who would call himself or refer to a fellow band member as a bassist - the preferred term is bass player (whether double or electric), likewise piano player, not pianist; (tenor) sax player, not saxophonist, but let it pass...) who were not happy with the new development, but the disadvantages did seem to outweigh the cons and many, if not most, soon took up the electric bass. Which if nothing else, is much easier to play and to lug around! Regards, --Technopat (talk) 12:43, 23 August 2008 (UTC)

Difference between "Jazz Rock" and "jazz fusion"[edit]

I have always heard the term "jazz rock" which (redirects to this page) associated with Steely Dan, who are not mentioned herein. Misnomer? — FREAK OF NURxTURE (TALK) 09:54, Feb 23, 2005 (UTC)

Jazz-rock sure is not very well established concept and the word is probably used in different contexts. It can refer to fusion music, that sounds like rock, and it is also used when speaking about jazz-influenced rock...

The term jazz rock is arguably used when speaking of bands like blood, sweat & tears, chicago. These bands represented pop- oriented songs with a strong relation to jazz. The term "jazz fusion" derives from mainly jazz structures but with strong hints of rock/funk/latin. Of course, after only a few years the genre fusion was established in its own right, with different subgenres. This is one of perhaps several possible explainations for this confusion between "jazz rock" and "jazz fusion" Tore Morten Andreassen, Norway

I think the definition of fusion has become very blurred. I see acts on the list that aren't remotely practitioners of fusion... (Steely Dan, Kenny G, Blood, Sweat & Tears, Chicago). If a jazz newbie reads this article, they're going to come away from it being very poorly informed about "what" fusion "is". Vytal 05:37, 20 September 2007 (UTC)

So then what the fuck are Steely Dan? I look up "jazz-rock" and it redirects to "jazz fusion", which never once mentions the Dan. Obviously they fit into some sort of jazz-influenced rock subgenre (just consider the players they hired - Larry Carlton, Wayne Shorter, Denny Dias, Steve Khan, Brecker Bros., David Sanborn; harmonic attributes of their songs - particularly on "Aja" and afterward, typical instrumentation and arrangement style, etc. Some references:

"Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees"

Ben Ratliff, "Pop Veterans Still Pumping Anti-Charisma"

"Steely Dan: Biography" at

"Mixing Music For The Masses"

Gary Kamiya, "Sophisticated Skank"

If there are articles for such eminent rock subgenres as "Melodic Hardcore," "goregrind", "Youth Crew", "Positive Hardcore", "Sunshine Pop", "Blackened Death Metal", and so on, surely there could be an article on "jazz-rock" independent of the "fusion" article. Right? Hmm...

And what's your criterion for excluding Steely Dan from the fusion genre anyway? At least back your statements up. How else do we know you're not just making shit up - you know, like 90% of the contrarian teenage fact bandits on Wikipedia? UncleJam (talk) 02:49, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

Hi, I did a quick bit of research, and some sources do make a difference between jazz fusion and "jazz rock". All Music Guide says "jazz rock" refers to either the most electrically-amplified, rock-oriented jazz fusion groups, or to the various rock performers who incorporated jazz elements into their music. So I have incorporated a "jazz rock" section in the article that draws this distinction. Now Steely Dan is in the article! : ) ...OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 11:28, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

There should be two separated articles about jazz fusion (fusion) and jazz rock. This article is making everyone very confused... --ΛэтєяиuS (talk) 15:46, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

I have added an entry for King Crimson. This should be expanded. The contribution of Robert Fripp (compared to Shakti for instance!) and related musicians is greatly underestimated in the Jazz-Rock and Fusion Literature. Added later: This entry (for "The Court of the Crimson King") has been removed. I see this as Vandalism. It is both elitist and racist (Anglophobic). Please reinstate it! Listen to 21st Century Schizoid Man again and then tell me that this is not one of the most important Fusion tracks ever recorded.

It would also actually be appropriate to have some discussion of the use of Jazz structures and solos by essentially rock bands such as Pink Floyd and even Hawkwind. Keith Bowden, London

Wikipedia has a policy of not using original research. Just because you consider king crimson fusion doen't mean everyone on wikipedia will agree with you. And even if KC is fusion, it wasnt really a major part of the fusion movement (KC is known for progressive rock, not fusion). So Im taking out your comments. 04:39, 20 June 2007 (UTC)

Is Herbie Hancock (after Sextant) jazz-rock or jazz-funk? I don't want to split hairs but there are a number of musicians missing from this discussion. Grover Washington, Ronnie Laws, Donald Byrd, Lonnie Liston Smith, Mandrill, Sly Stone, Earth Wind and Fire, The Crusaders, George Benson and a host of others who were tremendously influential to the progression of post-mainstream jazz. And why knock smooth jazz?. I was listening to my Dad's Sonny Stitt albums before I discovered Lifetime and Weather Report, but I have always refused to take part in this jazz snobbishness. I miss "real" Jazz Fusion but I also miss "real" soul music. Corporations killed great music (every genre). Live with it! —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ctjazzman (talkcontribs) 21:38, 31 March 2009 (UTC)

"Jazz-rock" and "Fusion" are related, but not synonymous. They have different origins, different practitioners, different outcomes, and different audiences. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:39, 17 August 2017 (UTC)


I'm sure that for the class of musicians (like me) which have been playing modern Jazz/ Fusion/ Jazz rock, it is quite clear what fusion usually is understood to be, probably most notably Jimi Hendrix and Weather Report (though that wouldn't always be rock) as important early exponents, and jazz rock meaning simply jazz and rock fused, so jazz things in a rock way or the other way around, fairly simple. House and hiphop type of music normally wouldn't be called Jazz Rock because usually that is neither rock nor Jazz...! --Theo Verelst

Yeah, but Hendrix made just few jazz-rock pieces (south saturn delta, rainy day dream away ...and... uhm... any more?). And even in those pieces he plays in quite bluesy manner instead of using jazz scales. --anon
On Jimi Hendrix - I think many would agree that most of the musical material on the 1970 live album under the band name, A Band of Gypsies, influenced the so-called Jazz-Rock music in a big way. Miles Davis is said to have been "blown away" after hearing, Machine Gun, off that record. Songs like The Power of Love also incorporation complex odd time signatures. The album in general influence is said to have influenced many rock and jazz musicians of the time. The Budzone guy 17:37, 10 June 2017 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Beadbud5000 (talkcontribs)

Jimi Hendrix was not a jazz musician. He didn't write jazz, he didn't play jazz. He was a revolutionary not evolutionary figure in guitar playing but he was just a very imaginative blues player, although I hate to use the word just. He was no more a jazz player than Eric Clapton was. He played Blues progressions, Dorian scale. Weather report could be called a fusion band but I'd call it a progressive rock band. Steely Dan was not a fusion band again it was a very sophisticated progressive rock band. If you think Steely Dan is a fusion band you don't know what jazz is. Fusion was defined by an era. Miles Davis' Bitches Brew 1969 is the first definitive fusion album, and it's no coincidence John McLaughlin and Chick Corea are featured on that album. Tony Williams emergency also from 1969 with, again, John McLaughlin playing guitar. The definitive Fusion band was Mahavishnu Orchestra and they stand as the greatest instrumental live band I ever heard. When I think about it there were only really a handful a real fusion bands. Fusion players Define the genre mainly. John McLaughlin, Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke, Billy Cobham, Jean-Luc Ponty, Al Di Meola, Tony Williams, Miles in that era, Airto Moreira, and Jeff Beck and a few others. Yes, there are still Fusion bands but keep in mind Mahavishnu Orchestra was the first Fusion band to have crossover appeal. Jackhammer111 (talk) 09:03, 7 October 2018 (UTC)

Weather report was many things, but the last thing I would call them is "progressive rock band". :) They started off in the "fusion"-style that Zawinul and Shorter invented together with Miles Davis, then became more futuristic and ethnic sounding and also more latin and funk oriented (the way jazz muscians play funk). Around 1980 they were almost pure jazz again, playing several swing and latin tunes, albeit with their trademark futuristic and ethnic elements still present. The rock- and R&B-elements were sparse and mainly contributed by Pastorius on a few tracks. (talk) 16:24, 24 March 2019 (UTC)

Separate list of artists/albums[edit]

The list is getting pretty long, maybe we should make a page base only on this list? Karol 10:10, 18 November 2005 (UTC)

I think the situation is still OK, but it is possible to make an own page for the list. "The most essential" list should be left to this article since it is not very long and since it is important. -- 17:06, 6 December 2005 (UTC)
I dont think we should do that at all. The other notable jazz album section is just a sandbox for anyone to edit. It has no real guidelines in what can be put there. Its a complete opinion section, not for wikipedia. We should consider a full delete of that section, and a restructuring of the essential section as well. Mkaycomputer 00:56, 22 March 2006 (UTC)
On this point I added John Abercrombie Timeless in the notable album selection a few days ago but see someone has already removed it. I created the album page a few days back as it one of my personal favourites and added it on this page as i would consider it to be an important fusion album (though also admittedly wanted link to my page heh heh). Not sure why you took it off- you mention list getting too long (obviously i recognise the need to keep clutter to a minimum), but also possilby you don't consider it objectively essential... difficulty here is establishing 'objectivity'- no-one can really be objective about anything, the closest we can come is to assume the standard accepted point of view which does not mean being objective and is in my opinion not always a good thing. When you say 'Its a complete opinion section, not for wikipedia' you must surely also recognise that anyone writing on the site is essentially writing their point is that you need to be careful when censoring other peoples opinions. Apologies for the rant. elsmallo85

Smooth Jazz[edit]

How can the genres of jazz fusion and smooth jazz be seperated? For example, albums like "The Pat Metheny Group" do have some hints of smooth jazz, such as the very repetive motifs and lack of complex improv. -- 21:37, 31 December 2005 (UTC)

There are always problems while separating musical genres that are close to each other. Of course you may always find a stuff that is "between" two genres or belongs to both of them at once. Or you may find an album that has many different styles. I think that the complexity of improvisation is not the fact that distinguishes fusion and smooth jazz. The essential feature of smooth jazz is that it has a "smooth" production and also compositions tend to be "smooth" - though this is not easy thing to describe. If you are talking about Pat Metheny Group's very first album, I think it falls quite clearly into jazz-rock category (that is subgenre of fusion) but you may be right that the album has some "smooth" elements too. Anyway, the album is not produced very smoothly but has mostly that kind of jazz-rock feel (no additional background synths, vocal dubs, strings etc.). Some latter Pat Metheny Group's albums such as Still Life (Talkin') have some tracks that have very "smooth" sound. Of course, there hardly are any objective methods to distinguish genres that are close to each other in every case. -- 09:57, 10 March 2006 (UTC)

Section on "Fusion Carries On" and album list[edit]

The prior article, while very well written, made it seem as if real fusion had basically been killed off by smooth jazz - which is simply false - bands like Tribal Tech and Allan Holdsworth rival the best fusion bands of the 1970's, and they, and their records, deserve significant mention in this article. I deleted one paragraph in the prior section to remove most or all duplicative references, and have added art and made a few other minor edits. Thank you. Tvccs 23:38, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

There was still some repetition and post-1970s section (which itself is a good idea) was out of balance (and still is) in the sense that you have written about artists you yourself happen to know or that are your personal favorites. How is it possible that for example John Scofield was not mentioned in the text at all but Andy Summers was? -- 07:43, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

---With all due respect, anonymous Helsinki, John Scofield (who I've met and like very much, was included in the albums list you keep chopping nearly all the recent stuff off. He also doesn't have the reputation as a fusion guitarist that either Henderson or Holdsworth does, period, not that he's not a great player. I'm even one of his MySpace friends. Although I appreciate your efforts and, least you left the section semi-intact this go-round, you're far more attuned to your favorites - Chick Corea's Elektric Band doesn't deserve that much space or attention, nor does Zawinul's new work, which is often more world music than fusion these days. If there's a bias's the huge one present in your album list/content which has what...a zillion Corea and related records (and not even Time Warp - a killer video and band).

And yes....I love Chick and have seen him, love Weather Report (your choices are too commerical in the later albums IMHO, and have seen them play live since 1971. I've met many of the bands on this list, have seen nearly all play live, and know a number of them personally. Ask 100 guitarists if Frank Gambale rates with Holdsworth and Henderson and 90 will tell you no. And yes, I've met Frank too and sat three feet from him in a club in L.A. where I usually see Scott play. Oh yes, I'm on Frank's MySpace site too. You continue to basically insist nearly every "landmark" fusion record was recorded before 1980...and that's dead wrong. Are we going to colloborate here or enagage in a transatlantic pissing contest with you as an anonymous user?

I like Bill Frisell, heard and met him as well, but most of his recent work isn't fusion - as you indicated, neither is Scofield's yet you insisted on waxing about all of his other styles. Nice language in the history section too...just because Holdsworth was mentioned earlier didn't mean it wasn't important to introduce him more thoroughly in the later section - it's the SynthAxe that really opened up his composing. Corea and his folks are all over the place in one form or another.

I am going to edit this again and add things back in, especially albums...if you think the list is too long, I'll delete some of the repetitive entries from Davis, Corea, Coryell, Di Meola, Tony Williams, Herbie Hancock and a few others - I've met and/or seen all of these guys multiple times. And if we can't play nice, I'll bring in the JazzWiki Project editor...And...thanks for moving the intro section from my section up to the head...that was a good idea - well done and a better placement. I will wait for a reply since I can't post you directly...and let's see what we can work out. Maybe a joint live edit, per se. If not, I'll revert more. Just let me know. Thanks.

Actually...I am going to revert that I've seen more of your editing on Holdsworth, Henderson and other stuff. We should do a joint edit and play nice...but you are one incredibly opinionated Finn. And I doubt you've heard, and or think they're worth the powder to blow them to hell...a lot of the recent acts I've mentioned. I've been listening to this stuff and seeing meeting these people for more than 30 years. I could have yanked Gino Vanelli from the prior text, and a bunch of other stuff...but I thought this was an add project...not a compete. Maybe I'm wrong...although I hope not Tvccs 09:13, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

As I reread your version of the last section again, it's obvious you think Corea, Metheny, Zawinul and Davis are still the only real fusion people out there. That's poppycock. Most of them don't even play real fusion anymore, and Miles is dead. Pat Metheny's a great player...and so is Lyle Mays...but they rarely play fusion anymore. You should get your hands on the Dejohnette video you deleted the mention's the best playing Pat's ever recorded IMHO, and a great video production.

And yes...let me also offer the following. I am a great fan of Scott Henderson..I think he's the best electric player on the planet at the moment. When I originally drafted the section, I had a mention of his more recent blues material - but I took it out because it wasn't "on topic", per se. Look at your Scofield and Frisell stuff and ask if you can say the same?

I know this is your "baby", and you've obviously done a lot of good work here - but it's not just "your work", and the way the original article was written says real fusion died about 1980...except as practiced by YOUR few favorites...the "real" fusion people. And with all due respect, that's simply not true. Tvccs 09:37, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

P.S. let's stop wasting time and energy and colloborate - and I'm sorry...Chick, Joe, Pat, etc are not the be all end of fusion. It's a disserviece to allow people to think so when they are a ton of great newer artists struggling to earn a dime keeping the music alive. Tvccs 09:37, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

And one other question...what's the deal with no links? There is a provision for outside linking built into the software...and I've seen nothing in Wikipedia that doesn't allow/encourage it? Is there a rule I'm unaware of? Or is this a "I say so" command just because you prefer it that way? Tvccs 09:45, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

I don't think our views are too different. I do some minor editing now with proper commentary to history field. And then I'll add some more comments here. -- 11:17, 14 September 2006 (UTC)
I really did not mean that work of Chick or Davis in 1980s is more important than Henderson's or Holdsworth's. Since Davis is such a giant in jazz and since he spent after all 1980s decade in performing fusion, introducing young important musicians, it is relevant to write a sentence or two about his 1980s work.

Elektric Band is only briefly mentioned and I think it is important since it after all was one of the most well known fusion acts of its perioid and especially because Weckl and Patitucci became famous when playing in the band. Gambale is mentioned as briefly as possible, I did not mean that he is more important than anybody else. But we can mention his name in one sentence. Now Pat Metheny is moved entirely to previous section though due to his importance for fusion, he could have been also mentioned in past-1970s section. More comments coming soon. -- 11:25, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

So, OK, if you look at the article now, what are the problems (besides, that some important artists may be missing)? A sentence or two can be added about Henderson or Holdsworth but rather about their style instead of giving a list of their band members (endless name dropping and using brackets makes the text look stupid). DeJohnette could have been introduced earlier with a sentence or two.
I think the essential albums list could be removed, since the same information is available (or should be) on the articles of artists. This kind of policy has been used before in similar cases. That list could stress 1970s material for the reason that it is not easy to say, what 1980s or 1990s recordings are "the essentials". It is hard to find any concrete information, what albums of some more recent artists are really widely respected.
I have no time for further analysis right now. There are no any necessary significant conflicting views. -- 11:43, 14 September 2006 (UTC)
Thank you for your attempt at civility and collaboration - Musically...I agree...with rare exception we'd have a ball in most settings - I don't know what it is that makes you not like Scott Henderson...he's a Corean, per se, but your heavy metal reference would make he and I both simultaneously laugh and throw up - I may have to copy him with your commentary. And I still disagree with your edits in the end section in many cases, although I have no issue with others.
We do have an issue, however, with Wiki formatting - here's an article about we both obviously love, and yet there's not one sample of it to be found anywhere on this page. The idea here is collaboration...and one of the KEY aspects of collaboration is links - lots of them. Why you don't "like" the formatting is beyond me, but you're missing half the point of this venture. These pages should serve as a forum for people to discover and explore, not just a static page, and believe me, as a Web designer, I have overdosed on seeing complex flash pages that are a nightmare to navigate.

To have a music page that doesn't provide a single link to provide examples of the music under discussion in forum like this is not only limited, it borders on asinine. I've built pages on here that in a single paragraph have multiple audio and video links to outside and inside sources, read just fine, yet there's nothing here of that type. The time would be just as well spent building album pages of those you treasure that could be LINKED to from the copy. Join the WikiAlbum Porject and do the work.

Frankly, I have no idea why your thoughts on that subject should serve as the gospel for this page forever - you obviously did a very good job working on this subject with an eye towards your heavy 70's beliefs. They just aren't complete, and again, they do a disservice to all the people making this music today with little or no financial backing. It's more work to build the pages with all the right links and sources, but that's what makes the difference between a mediocre experience and something that's far more interesting. To simply rely on type to do the job largely defeats the purpose, and we both know Wikis are not fancy pages.

      • I'll have a look at your latest changes. Thanks. Tvccs 12:19, 14 September 2006 (UTC)
      • I also think it's a good idea to keep the records list and hope other users build pages for them. It might be to prudent to change the name to "Recommended" or "Suggested". I'm going to post my own cut-down version as well. And you can have a look. I think it would be counterproductive to kill it, however. Tvccs 12:22, 14 September 2006 (UTC)
I don't think I've said anything negative about Henderson yet. Yes, I really think that Tribal Tech (songs like "The Big Wave" and many others) are influenced by heavy metal tradition (riffs and guitar sound). Though, it is not necessary to stress this.

I checked some instructions and since external links in text section are not disallowed, they can be used, though I rather put them in "external links" section. I still see an enormous problem with recording list, since it is really impossible to pick some particular albums by some particular artists. In some cases this is possible but often there is simply no any way to determine which albums are the most respected. -- 12:47, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

I have to tell you this is the very first time I have ever heard "The Big Wave" described as Heavy Metal anything and I have been sharing Tribal Tech with people for fifteen years - it's far closer to what McLaughlin was doing with Mahavishnu (who Scott loves), albeit with a lot more bending and slurring and use of mostly minor effects. I've changed the name to a "Suggested" list...we're trying to point people at high-quality exaples here, and this list does that. It also includes more newer work than the prior one, but the majority of listings are still pre-1980. And as far as "expertise, we certainly both seem to have plenty, and we're simply sharing that with others - again, that's what Wikipedia is all about.
If you want to see an example of what I mean with linking - visit Derek Sherinian. It should serve as an example of what a Wikipedia page can be, even with the limitations of WikiMedia. And that one page now delivers as much or more information than a very complex Web site. All the audio and video on the page is obtained from correctly copyrighted sources as well, even though the links are exterior.
And on your might be good to see if some examples of fusion audio and video can be scouted and linked to with the idea of creating an examples section at the bottom of the page if you like, even though I prefer to have the links with the text - the Sherinian site does a very good job of presenting both internal and external links attactively, using the provided HTML to hide the links. It takes longer to do it, but the end result is very user-friendly. I await your thoughts Tvccs 13:26, 14 September 2006 (UTC)
I'm tired of editing this article now. I don't care what you do (though I may hope you keep some of my ideas in mind). But album names should be written with italics with no "quotation marks" used. In other wikipedia articles, such as 1980s, decades are written like "1980s" instead of "1980's". And I still don't like the list. I checked some artists from All Music Guide and they seem to have very different ideas what is the best album of some particular artists. Of course, AMG reviews are just opinions of one person but so are your opinions as long as you don't have any source... This is why I see the list problematic. You can go and remove some Weather Report, Miles Davis and Coryell albums from the list, I have not added them. Should not Yellowjackets be mentioned? I thought they're famous and playing fusion. -- 13:41, 14 September 2006 (UTC)
Thanks again for your feedback, and I think we got to a point of mutual agreement on nearly all of it...that's the idea. As far as AMG goes...either you or I likely have ten times the knowledge in this area than anyone on AMG does...I'm not obligated to rely on AMG...I've been doing a lot of very detailed research on Derek Sherinian and Planet X and have been floored at the number of mistakes on AMG, much less a lack of detail - a properly implemented Wikipedia can blow AMG out of the water in many respects. I'll look to link to them for specific album reviews, but in many cases there are other "professional" sites that have better information, more complete music samples, etc. - and as an end user, I generally get far better information from reading the collective review on Amazon in many cases than what AMG has to offer.

For the Yellowjackets...the opinion in the U.S. is that they are far more "smooth" than "fusion" at this point a 'la a Spyro Gyra. However, I'm not god's gospel here either..if you feel strongly, add it back in. I know a lot about this subject, but there are certainly people that know more - the guys that run Audiophile Imports are walking talking encyclopedias on this stuff. When I get a chance I'm going to look for examples of the music that can be linked here. I'll try and set them up in a section at the bottom of the page as I find them. As far as the decades style, I write for a major newspaper group in the US, and follow AP professional style. If there's something I'm missing on Wiki formatting...I'll change it, but I doubt it should be modified at this point. Again, my thanks for your assistance and colloboration - I'm curious to hear your feedback about the linking as implemented on the Derek Sherinian page - whatever it might be. Thanks again. Tvccs 21:41, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

I used AMG as an example just in order to demonstrate why I feel that it is hard to recommend any certain albums (expect those ones, that really are generally considered as classics). I don't object linking any more, I thought that it is against Wikipedia's style but if it is not, then I don't care. Many sources, including Wikipedia, say that Yellowjackets is a fusion band, so perhaps the band's name could be mentioned since they are so well known after all. But there is yet another guitarist, who might be significant enough to get mentioned, namely David Torn. He has made some quite respected "avant-gardish" albums such as Cloud About Mercury.

Another name that comes to me is that drummer Ronald Shannon Jackson and his "free-funk" music that derives from Ornette Coleman's ideas but I'm not sure whether it belongs to fusion tradition or not. Those early examples of fusion in the beginning of the article, that include The Byrds and Paul Butterfield Blues Band, are not written by me and I have no idea whether they are relevant at all. Some fan may have put them. I've partially removed that material but there are still some of it left. And is it really meaningful for fusion that Cream members played long, improvised solos? Well, it may be but I'm not sure. Santana may be much more important since their music - from the very first album released in 1969 - really has some similarities when compared to some jazz/rock/latin fusion. -- 07:34, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

I'm a big fan of David Torn as well...I just wish he had more "stuff" out there...I have a video of him with Terry Bozzio that's fabulous doing Hendrix stuff. Ronald Shannon Jackson...good question...I really only listened to his stuff after really getting into Vernon Reid, from that era...but that's a good question...might be worth a brief with a Vernon reference. Yeah...I wondered about the Byrds reference, and other stuff...but it's not a bad idea to link this music with other forms...although I questioned whether Cream really should be linked simply because they did a lot of lengthy solos...but I wasn't t trying to delete a lot of stuff...unless it's factually wrong...and one can make the argument that some of those early bands had a "jazz" connection, even if it's not all that obvious.

I'm not sure what Roger McGuinn would say about Eight Miles High in that sense...I'll bet there's a Web article somewhere that discusses it. The Santana thought is also valid..."Lotus" and the Tom Coster stuff certainly qualifies...hell...Lotus belongs in this album unbelievebly good three record set with almost no wonder it wasn't released in the US for years...that's a good idea. Thanks again.


Are youtube -links good idea? They may break copyrights (about which I do not personally care about so much, but which is against Wikipedia's rules) and those files in youtube come and go so we should keep constantly monitoring whether they are working or not. -- 13:03, 22 September 2006 (UTC)

Many artists are now using YouTube and other sources to promote their work, and YouTube has a policy of removing any work that is copyrighted for which they receive a legitimate complaint. It is necessary to monitor the links and edit/remove/update as needed for any linked content, and I prefer to go to other sources than YouTube when possible that may offer a better chance of permanence. That being said, especially when it comes to music, etc., those links are extremely valuable in providing persons with actual samples of real music/video, and I am personally not a fan of the :30 ogg samples around in Beta which are far too limited in comparsion. Tvccs 00:03, 18 October 2006 (UTC)
And let me add...for the record...there was a link here that YouTube recently pulled for such a complaint I had to it's not like they're ignoring copyright. I expect the Google purchase will only increase vigilance/compliance in that area as well. Tvccs 19:54, 19 October 2006 (UTC)

11th house linked (my minor change)[edit]

I took a bet that Coryell's 11th house was not too obscure for mention (1 of their albums is one of my 26 favorite albums of all time), and the bet payed off. There is an Article about this band, and I created a link to such, @it's first mention. This was an important early fusion band. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Thaddeus Slamp (talkcontribs) 03:03, 9 February 2007 (UTC).

minor change[edit]

made the word fusion into a link, and added genre of music to the disambiguation page.Thaddeus Slamp 00:04, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

Is progressive metal a type of jazz fusion?[edit]

Shouldn't the album "Focus" by Cynic be added to the album list. It's Jazz Fusion mixed with death metal, probably one of the most noteworthy examples of that hybrid

Or albums by Atheist for that matter

Yes they would be,they fuse great metal with melodic jazzy runs and scales.They don't lean into the blues box that much at all and it's not totally classical either.So therefore with jazzy interludes and death metal they would be fusion/metal.Same goes for death(92 and above).Just because there isnt trumpet's and saxophone's doesnt mean its not jazz.Whoever says atheist doesnt base alot of there structure on jazz is a complete dolt.Listen to elements.Both cynic albums are obvious contenders to that scene.

Here's my word as a complete dolt :) First, I'm not familiar with either Cynic or Atheist but I do enjoy some instrumental tech death (Blotted Science) and some much lesser-known highly mathy djent. If you'd genuinely like to know whether your fave prog metal genuinely counts as a fusion of metal and jazz (rather than merely showing influences of jazz), you need to interrogate the music on a key point:
What's the role of improvisation? Are there solos, but is it just the guitar player over a totally rehearsed and rigid rhythm section? If so, it doesn't qualify as fusion.
You can avoid both "leaning into the blues box" and being "totally classical" without going anywhere near jazz. "Jazzy" is not jazz. The use of certain scales and chords is not jazz. (Ragtime piano music sounds "jazzy" to most people, but it isn't jazz because it's entirely notated with no space for improvisation and it requires little rhythmic interpretation).
Jazz is not defined by structure. It's defined by improvisation.
Snardbafulator (talk) 05:02, 17 July 2011 (UTC)

Moreover, the question behind this question is whether "Jazz fusion" is a description (in which case it's fair to argue about what new things meet the description), or a genre (in which case things springing from other genres like death metal can't fit by definition). In a world where, after thirty-some years of "Fusion" still mostly means Bitches Brew to jazz fans, while hundreds of interesting fusions of music have not been considered part of the genre, I'd say the latter. It's not unlike "alternative music" most of which is actually mainstream. Jgm (talk) 13:12, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

I think the whole "The influence of jazz fusion on progressive rock and metal" section should be rewritten and much condensed. While I think it's appropriate to include such a section, it's not appropriate to have an endless list of prog rock and metal acts here that reads more like fanboy talk than encyclopedic knowledge. Don't get me wrong - I like many of the bands mentioned - even some of the ones from the death metal camp. But 90% of the readers would probably just skip this section, because it's not really informative. It just says what prog metal fans want to read, so it seems to be written specifically for that audience. ^ Thats a contradiction because obviously that guy is on here looking for something written specifically for him.

-- (talk) 21:54, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

POV praise-filled tone removed. Also, the section was heavily condensed. Thanks for your suggestion.OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 11:56, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

There is no such thing as "Jazz Metal", stop saying that. You have jazz influences in many more progressive metal bands (Cynic by far the most I'd say), but they are still faaaar away from being jazz. The most is that Sean's drumming is very "feel-y" and his prominent use of ghost notes, and Paul's chords and some scales, along with the general tone he is going for. But calling them jazz metal is stretching it. Mostly I think "Jazz Metal" was created by 18 year old metal elitists to further promote the "intelligence" and "superiority" of metal over other popular music forms. Just point out that some metal and rock musicians show some jazz influences in their playing and be done with it.Hecied (talk) 13:43, 3 July 2013 (UTC)

Andy Summers - Charming Snakes (1990), World Gone Strange (1991)[edit]

Hi, Could editors and contributors please help find reviews from reputable, credible reviewers that support the claim that Andy Summers' (ex-Police) albums Charming Snakes (1990) and World Gone Strange (1991) are notable, influential jazz fusion albums? If we cannot find reviews and comments by prominent jazz fusion music critics, I argue that they should be taken out of the "Influential albums" list.Nazamo 15:09, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

I found an review of World Gone Strange, which gave it 2 out of 5 stars ( gave Charming Snakes 3 out of 5 stars. So far, the reviews do not suggest that the Summers' albums should be kept alongside Tribal Tech, Alain Caron, and the others in the 1990s. I am still waiting for any supporters of the Summers' albums to post reviews here...Nazamo 20:25, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
The word "influential" is relative and debatable, which is why I never use it and why it has no place in Wikipedia. But it's easy to find articles, radio shows, TV shows, Youtube clips, etc. about Andy Summers and jazz. You can also try his autobiography. I don't consider him one of the pioneers of fusion like Miles Davis, Weather Report, Return to Forever, or Larry Coryell. For one reason, during the jazz fusion decade of the 1970s, he wasn't playing jazz fusion. He was studying classical guitar in California and giving lessons so he could make a living. Around 1976 or '77 he met Sting and Stewart Copeland and The Police took off. When he got around to making solo albums, fusion had already morphed into other things. Some of his albums qualify as fusion, in particular Charming Snakes (1990), World Gone Strange (1991), The Last Dance of Mr. X (1997), and Earth + Sky (2003). Green Chimneys (1999) is a tribute to Monk and Peggy's Blue Skylight (2000) is a tribute to Mingus. Those albums contain jazz fusion and straight jazz. Among the musicians accompanying him were Victor Bailey, John Beasley, Gregg Bissonette, Randy Brecker, Vinnie Colauita, Eliane Elias, Peter Erskine, Bill Evans (the saxophonist), Joey De Francesco, Herbie Hancock, Darryl Jones, Tony Levin, Mike Mainieri (who produced World Gone Strange), and Chad Wackerman. All of them have jazz and jazz fusion cred.
Vmavanti (talk) 23:14, 22 July 2018 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:HymnoftheSeventhGalaxy.jpg[edit]

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Image:HymnoftheSeventhGalaxy.jpg is being used on this article. I notice the image page specifies that the image is being used under fair use but there is no explanation or rationale as to why its use in this Wikipedia article constitutes fair use. In addition to the boilerplate fair use template, you must also write out on the image description page a specific explanation or rationale for why using this image in each article is consistent with fair use.

Please go to the image description page and edit it to include a fair use rationale. Using one of the templates at Wikipedia:Fair use rationale guideline is an easy way to insure that your image is in compliance with Wikipedia policy, but remember that you must complete the template. Do not simply insert a blank template on an image page.

If there is other other fair use media, consider checking that you have specified the fair use rationale on the other images used on this page. Note that any fair use images uploaded after 4 May, 2006, and lacking such an explanation will be deleted one week after they have been uploaded, as described on criteria for speedy deletion. If you have any questions please ask them at the Media copyright questions page. Thank you.BetacommandBot 00:32, 6 June 2007 (UTC)

Roots of Fusion Section[edit]

I think it's pretty clear that this section has pangs of untidiness, unprofessionalism, and irrelevance throughout. Irrelevance is due to the fact that this is, after all, an article about Jazz Fusion, not Miles Davis. While it might be meaningful to highlight some of his previous work just to emphasize his role as a pioneer, we really don't need to get as biographical as the article does. The aforementioned unprofessionalism is present at numerous spots, most visibly by, "this group pushed the limits of freedom and made some fiery jazz!" and "...made a series of records that I haven't heard." In addition, McLaughlin's name is misspelled throughout. At times, the sense of chronology that this entire article intends to promote is obscured.

I'll take a stab at fixing this, but I figured I'd leave something here first. --Ak47mustang (talk) 21:02, 17 November 2007 (UTC)

I'm glad someone else noticed this. I think a lot of that sections should probably just be removed, since it doesn't help understanding and is just generally irrelevant. I might go ahead and fiddle with it, if anyone objects to my editing, they're welcome to put some back in. Cakie (talk) 07:56, 2 November 2008 (UTC)

Need Commentary on Hendrix Influence[edit]

I'm no expert on Fusion Jazz....but i think that it is plainly obvious that Hendrix had a direct and profound influence on many of these guitarists. That, I believe, can be easily verified and cited. Also it is plainly obvious that Hendrix pioneered incorporating electronic effects into music. And, it *is* well documented that Miles Davis regarded Hendrix as a direct influence on his music around the same time that he was pioneering fusion jazz. I think a little more research needs to be done to give this monumental guitarist and musician his due credit. People like John Mclaughlin I'm sure would not hesitate to put Hendrix at the top of his list of influences. Hendrix embodied the essence and spirit of this music and I would be willing to put my next paycheck on the line that many of the pioneers of fusion jazz would emphatically agree. I beg one of you wiki gurus to take this into consideration and make the appropriate changes to this article optic_age 23:33, 4 February 2008 (UTC).


I’ve editing the opening of the article to use the term fusion—though I understand why the article at fusion music is something else, I think most music listeners understand “fusion” to be something jazz + rock, and it seems to be the term fans use to refer to the genre. —Wiki Wikardo 02:21, 1 July 2008 (UTC)

More confusion...[edit]

Greetings All, Somewhere along this very confusing line there was a moment (around the mid-to-late 70s) when musicians themselves - not the music press (too heavily into fighting each other to see who could discover yet another punk group, but that's for another day) - were referring to crossover or crossover jazz. Any feedback? Cheers!--Technopat (talk) 09:57, 23 August 2008 (UTC)

PS. The reason I mention this is 'cos the Crossover (music) only makes a passing reference to jazz fusion.--Technopat (talk) 10:00, 23 August 2008 (UTC)


Hi I'm not used on the technical way in Creating a new section or sub section on a wikipedia article

But I may I tel you about the need of creating the sub section

Notable Books on Jazz fusion

what I'd like to be put in is :

  • Jazz Rock Fusion " The People The Music ", Julie Coryell et Laura Friedman, Éd. Hal Leonard
  • Jazz Rock A History , Stuart Nicholson, Éd. Canongate
  • La vie Extraordinaire et tragique de Jaco Pastorius, Bill Milkowski, Éd. In Folio
  • Jazz Hot Encyclopédie " Fusion ", Guy Reynard, Éd. de L'instant
  • Power, Passion and Beauty - The Story of the Legendary Mahavishnu Orchestra, Walter Kolosky, Éd. Abstract Logix Books
  • Weather Report - Une Histoire du Jazz Electrique, Christophe Delbrouck, Éd. Le Mot et le Reste, ISBN 9782915378498


Contradiction with smooth jazz article[edit]

The smooth jazz section of this article clearly contradicts with the smooth jazz article, primarily in the discussion of origins. Smooth jazz (as a genre, not a radio format) existed well before the 1980s; considering the that certain smooth jazz hits (such as George Benson's Breezin' or Chuck Mangione's Feels So Good) acheived popularity well before the rise of the smooth jazz radio format. Kenny G did not invent smooth jazz. ANDROS1337 22:57, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

Frank Zappa and his Hot Rats album[edit]

I think Frank Zappa and his album Hot Rats from 1969 deserves a mention in this article, as it's definitely an early example of combining jazz-style improvisation and arrangements with the instrumentation and "rawness" of rock music. And there's no question about Zappa's status as a jazz artist, since he was (posthumously) introduced into the jazz hall of fame in 1994. (talk) 16:25, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

Yes, i thought Hot Rats was credited as the "first" Jazz-Rock record, or at least one of the 3 first JR records. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:46, 19 April 2011 (UTC)

I agree. The Hot Rats album had a major influence on musicians that played the so-called fusion music. I also believe it was the first record that was clearly identified with the fusion gandra by the mid 1970's.The Budzone guy 20:55, 23 June 2011 (UTC)

POV Pushing in Article Title[edit]

The sources in this article are excellent. The problem is, you aren't following what they're saying. Julie Coryell's book is called "Jazz Rock Fusion" for a reason. The central problem here is "Jazz Fusion" is a neologism coined by some rock critic some 20 years ago to describe music some 20 years older than that. It's a case study in what Frank Zappa identified as continually reiterating the original mistakes of the Ancient Incompetents.

"Jazz Fusion" is a meaningless term. Fusion with what? Jazz has fused with Indian music (Shakti), classical (Third Stream), World Music (Oregon, Paul Winter Consort) and doubtless other diverse musical forms as well. What you mean by it is the original term, "jazz-rock fusion," which was coined specifically for the jazz musicians who played with and were inspired by Miles Davis to get into electric instruments. You also talk about "jazz rock" which is okay, but you've got to bear in mind that this term originally meant the rock musicians who began to get into playing jazz (e.g. Zappa, Soft Machine). These two groups of musicians have some overlap (e.g. Allan Holdsworth) but there's a fundamental difference in having a primarily jazz background and a primarily rock background. Your sources are good on this except for AllMusic, which is never good to use for meta-analysis. "Jazz rock" referred to rock musicians, not the wildest of the jazz musicians, which would have to include Mahavishnu Orchestra, probably the single most publicly-identified "jazz-rock fusion" band of all time.

Some people want to include more pop artists in this category, like Blood, Sweat & Tears, Chicago, Van Morrison, Steely Dan and Joni Mitchell. I'd caution against this. Not to get all Wynton Marsalis on ya or anything, but genuinely playing jazz has some requirements. It can't just sound "jazzy" or use jazz instrumentation. "Moondance" is blue-eyed R&B, not jazz. Steely Dan used some interesting chords, but so do Hollywood film scores. Jazz requires a certain rhythmic approach that's not strictly notatable (e.g. "swing"). It also requires room for interactive improvisation, not just a slot in an arrangement for an overdubbed guitar solo. You're better off citing these guys with a separate page for strongly jazz-influenced pop and rock musicians. Gentle Giant didn't play "jazz" because they had a sax. You don't want to render the term meaningless.

I'm not as familiar with the newer prog metal mentioned in this article as I should be, but I'd also caution against turning "fusion" into a meaningless buzzword. News Flash: A young musician can be incredibly skilled and still not call things by their proper names. If you're impressed with the complexities of a style (and I have to admit, the idea of "playing in five different tempos at once" is a new one one me, and probably something that never occured to either Eliott Carter or Conlon Nancarrow) and work to practice until your fingers are about to fall off for the purpose of playing it note-for-note exactly, you're probably not practicing anything that resembles jazz, fused or otherwise. (If you practice playing scales over a chord progression with the idea of doing it differently every time, then you're practicing jazz). What you're practicing is a form of highly arranged progressive rock, and that's completely awesome in its own right. It's just not "fusion."

My main (entirely well-meant) suggestion: Change the article's title to "Jazz Rock," which is a general enough term to encompass both jazz rock fusion played by jazzers and jazz rock played by rockers, then disambiguate in the article as you did (mostly) successfully. Otherwise, you could split the article into "Jazz-Rock Fusion," which deals with the Miles alums, Weather Report and then gets into Creed Taylor and "smooth jazz" down the line (since those guys are nearly all legit jazz musicians), and "Jazz-Rock," which would touch on Zappa, Soft Machine, the rest of the British jazz-rock contingent and then maybe some genuinely improvising jazz metal.

Just bear in mind that to be worthy of the name, jazz in whatever mixture with rock requires improvisation and rhythmically flexible group interaction.

Snardbafulator (talk) 11:46, 16 July 2011 (UTC)

Very well said. I agree with pretty much everything you say, although I think a case can be made for a separation between "jazz-rock" (musicians who came towards jazz from a primarily rock tradition) and "fusion" (musicians who came towards rock -- or world music, or whatever -- from a primarily jazz tradition). I was puzzled, for example, to find no mention of Paul Winter or Oregon in this article. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:27, 17 August 2017 (UTC)

Edit #1[edit]

I'm tweaking the first sentence, based on the following:

Odd time signatures didn't come from jazz, as odd meter in jazz was a distinctly fringe preoccupation at that time. One of the major jazz critics of the 50s (Leonard Feather?) wrote a famous polemic in Down Beat proclaiming that any music not in 4/4 couldn't possibly be jazz (because anything not in common time couldn't swing). Despite the best efforts of Lenny Tristano, Dave Brubeck, Max Roach and Don Ellis, this was the majority view in the jazz world through the 60s. The two most significant jazz musicians of that period, John Coltrane and Miles Davis, didn't use odd meter at all.

Odd (or more properly, additive) meter arose in jazz from the same wellspring that gave it to the early 20th-century classical world: ethnomusicology. "Blue Rondo" is "a la Turk" for a reason. Don Ellis famously hung around the UCLA Ethnomusicology Department to develop techniques to teach his West Coast big band how to feel extended meter. John McLaughlin, the most renowed odd meter jockey of the jazz-rock fusion movement, derived his from Indian talas.

"Extended compositions" weren't a preoccupation of post-Big Band Era jazz, either, and in any case, is not a defining characteristic of jazz. I'm changing "long improvisations" to "long group improvisations" because that's what sets jazz jamming apart from rock jamming.

The Wikipedia Progressive Rock Project considers The Gibraltar Encyclopedia of Progressive Rock to be an unreliable source for biographical info. It's also an unreliable source for historical musical analysis.

I will wince and bite my tongue and do my best to ignore the retroactive neologism "jazz fusion." That's an argument for a later time.

Snardbafulator (talk) 07:28, 17 July 2011 (UTC)

Edit #2[edit]

In the Jazz Rock section, second graf, I removed the inserted word "fusion" in brackets from the AllMusic quote, for several reasons.

First, because it added exactly nothing to the meaning of the quote. Secondly, because whether or not it's against Wikipedia policy to insert words into quotes to add a meaning not already there (and I'm sure it is), it's doubtless unethical regardless. You do this to clarify the anteceedent to a pronoun or something equally free of controversy. You do not do this to make a quote say what you want it to say, in this case to make a source use a genre label it may not choose to apply to the music it's characterizing. It is the thesis of this article's author that "jazz fusion" is a label fit for the Miles Davis alumni whose music was first described universally as "jazz-rock fusion," and that consequently John McLaughlin somehow exists in the same genre-defined musical universe as Kenny G. Am I the only one who thinks this is completely insane?

When the terminology changed and critics began dropping the "jazz-rock" from "fusion" is also around the time the music itself began changing, largely as a reaction to the contracting economy of the late 70s but also due to critical brickbats being tossed at music that seemed to stress virtuosity for its own sake. The "jazz-rock fusion" of the early 70s has an entirely different set of musical values than the "fusion" (or "jazz fusion" if you want to make a half-assed attempt at being precise) that began emerging in the 80s. And the amount of genuinely progressive players in this jazz-rock style who absolutely despise both the term "fusion" and the sort of music it labels is notorious (ask Allan Holdsworth, for one). It's sort of like asking King Crimson to exist in the same genre with The Knack. But we don't do that, do we. We have a progressive rock genre for Crimson and an entirely different pop rock genre for The Knack. We don't judge the one by the same criteria we'd use for the other. That's why this article is veritably screaming to be disambiguated into separate genres.

Snardbafulator (talk) 09:46, 17 July 2011 (UTC)

Discussion between IP Helsinki Guy and Tvccs[edit]

I'm sticking this in a new section to increase the chance it'll be noticed. First, really really great discussion; both you guys are amazingly knowledgable. It also seems to help me make my point about the nature of "jazz fusion" as a fundamentally incoherent genre label. Tvccs seems to be concerned that first, most of the first generation of "fusion" players stopped playing "that music" starting around the 80s, and also seems to be more willing to define "fusion" as a progressive, musically adverturous, non-commercial music style. I say bravo to his advocacy of Allan Holdsworth and Scott Henderson and I strongly agree. I share his goal of lending support to musicians who are staking their careers on trying to keep a challenging musical ideal alive and not just staying afloat or remaining "relevant" in a changing marketplace.

But the exclusionary approach may not be appropriate for the term "jazz fusion." Tvccs seems willing to deny or de-emphasize that label not just for Yellowjackets and Joe Zawinul, but for Bill Frisell and John Scofield as well — that they "aren't really playing jazz fusion." And this is a difficult argument to make, not only considering that the 'Jackets's bass player Jimmy Haslip has just toured with Allan Holdsworth and Alan Pasqua (and Chad Wackerman) in the Tony Williams memorial project and that the musicians move fluidly between the more commercial and more adventurous worlds. There's a definite genetic linkage there, which extends to the likes of Tom Scott and Steve Gadd for more commercial music still. The linkage fundamentally has to do with all of them possessing legitmate jazz chops (which are superior to rock chops).

The problem could be solved if there was a recognized genre called "progressive jazz fusion" where we could include not only the Miles alums from the 70s, but also Zappa, Soft Machine and some of the even more freewheeling electric improvisers (like Derek Bailey and Fred Frith) from that heady period along with the later innovators like David Torn and HoBoLeMa and save "jazz fusion" for the more commercial exemplars, or those who the idea of "fusion" with jazz implies fusion with funk or R&B or World Music rather than with progressive/avant rock. Of course we can't do that, because that would entail making up a genre without citing sources and that's not done on Wikipedia. But it sure would be logical.

What the three of us seem to agree on is that the music definitely changed by the 80s and what went on to become widely known as "fusion" or "jazz fusion" past that point winds up orphaning the likes of Holdsworth and Henderson genre-wise. To merely include more examples of the decidedly un-smooth stuff (and that would of course entail the Ornette Coleman-tinged strain of Roland Shannon Jackson, James Blood Ulmer and David Fiuczynski) would be to fight a more-or-less losing battle in a genre as wide-open as "jazz fusion" because you'll always find more reliable sourcing for the more commercial acts. To attempt to contrast "jazz fusion" with "smooth jazz" isn't entirely tenable either, because "smooth jazz," beyond being a marketing category created in the late 80s, has existed in jazz proper since at least Paul Whiteman's 1925 premiere of Rhapsody in Blue (jazz didn't become a self-consciously un-mainstream art music until the invention of bebop). The same musicians who use their mind-boggling chops to play with Holdsworth also play straight-ahead "jazz fusion."

I'm not sure precisely how we solve this problem. I'd personally solve it for Holdsworth by calling his work with Williams and Ponty "jazz-rock fusion," his stuff with Soft Machine "jazz rock," his stuff with Bruford, UK and I.O.U. progressive rock, most of his solo stuff deeply jazz-influenced progrock and his later albums None Too Soon and The Sixteen Men of Tain straight-ahead jazz. There is no single genre for it and I don't think Wikipedia is the right place to address that issue.

We can take a good stab at solving it, though, for the music that's entered history. I have two suggestions. The stronger one is to create a separate page for "jazz-rock fusion" for the first generation of music played by the Miles alums and jazz musicians who took up rock instruments. "Jazz fusion" didn't become a term of common critical parlance until decades later. "Jazz-rock fusion" can be easily sorced, not only in Down Beat and Julie Coryell's book "Jazz Rock Fusion," but also in the early 70s rock press available for sourcing like Rolling Stone. This naturally disambiguates from the more commercial "fusion" that followed, because there were no specialized radio stations playing it. It's more culturally aligned with progressive rock than jazz (it alienated many jazz fans at the time) and was aired by DJs who also played progrock. In there, you could also talk about the more adventurous strains of jazz rock either played by rock musicians or the more jazz-trained musicians who came out of the 60s British blues boom: Soft Machine, Nucleus, Isotope, (one aspect of) Hatfield and the North, Delivery, etc. But because "jazz rock" has also been sourced to include rock and pop acts who used jazz arrangement or motific influences, it may be better to also create a separate page for "jazz rock" to talk about all of it.

The jazz rock section here is pretty much okay, but in order to create an article for jazz-rock fusion, I'd need to edit this article and separate out the Miles alums with a link to the jazz-rock fusion article. That would be serious editing and I don't want to do that until I get some feedback from some of the folks who put so much time into working on this article. I'm also going to make this proposal to both the Jazz Project editors and the Music Genre Task Force.

So what say you? Do I sound like I'm on the right track here, or what?

Snardbafulator (talk) 17:30, 19 July 2011 (UTC)

A minor dissent ...[edit]

...just because Holdsworth was mentioned earlier didn't mean it wasn't important to introduce him more thoroughly in the later section - it's the SynthAxe that really opened up his composing.

I'm going to have to comment on this, Tvccs, because I'm something of a Holdsworth completist and have read every Holdsworth interview I've found on the net. I think it's more accurate to say that his digital delay pedal and rack (which he still uses) "really opened up his composing" and you can hear that beginning with the I.O.U. album.

Because of the SynthAxe's fret spacing (necessitated by the electronics), Holdsworth finds it much harder to voice certain chords and has had to work around that. I think what you can say is that the SynthAxe opened up his linear ideas, because he can program a fifths tuning across six strings, something which is physically impossible on a guitar, which I think is apparent on the head melody of "Non-Brewed Condiment." It gave him a new palette of course, and also allowed him to do what he always wanted to, which is to control sustain without distortion. But if you'll listen to "Pud Wud" from Then!, where Steve Hunt plays the SynthAxe Oberheim patches on keyboard, there's not a substantial structural difference.

Snardbafulator (talk) 20:15, 19 July 2011 (UTC)


First of all, I applaud Snardbafulator's efforts on this talk page to stir up discussions on the nature of fusion/jazz fusion/jazz-rock fusion/jazz rock. Count me among those who think that jazz rock should get its own article outside of this "_____ Fusion" mess. If post-bop and smooth jazz both get their own articles (not to mention all those countless articles on sub-sub-sub-sub-genres of metal and rock), then certainly the music of jazz influenced rockers deserves its own space. My other big issue with this article is that most of it (especially in the History section) reads more like an editorial than the encyclopedia article it should be. Words like "important", "influential", "commercial", "controversial" and "seminal" are bandied about with no definition (let alone references) for what exactly importance, influence, commerciality, controversy and seminal are in the context of jazz and rock music, the titular "fusion" of this article; Headhunters and Thrust may be seminal albums to you or I or fusion fans or Herbie fans, but most average Joe's aren't even aware of their existence. I don't know if I'm putting this all in the best way, but this article does seem to me to be glaringly POV, even if it's in a relatively innocent way. Thanks ExplorerPlus (talk) 04:37, 8 August 2011 (UTC)

Thanks :) First, I'm not one to wince at terms you referenced per se unless they appear clearly idiosyncratic. I think we have to be careful about throwing the dreaded "POV" accusation around in articles about art generally. I can't speak for anyone else, but I personally am clearly not ashamed that I happen to love a great deal of jazz (and classical, jazz rock, progressive rock and jazz-rock fusion) and this motivates me to edit and eventually write articles about this music, and that this makes me different from, say, a Justin Bieber fan who would likely not share my perspectives on any of it. You can't expect a volunteer encyclopedia project to have music articles written by people who don't have opinions.
That said, unsourced peacock language is bad, but unsourced consensus opinion is less so. Our tasks as editors (and good historically-minded music critics) when we use terms like "seminal" or "commercial" without inline cites to a direct quote (which happens more often than policy would like) is to use them with an eye toward the views of the overall jazz-whatever fan community and/or critical consensus and less on our own particular tastes. I don't personally like Bitches Brew very much, but I can call it "seminal" with a straight face and a clean conscience in a Wikipedia article because I know the history of its reception. It's less about following an ironclad WP policy than using good judgment.
That said, here are the problems with "jazz fusion" and what we might do about them:
  • "Jazz fusion" needs to be etymologically traced to its origin, which I strongly suspect appeared no earlier than the late 80s, taking over from the term "fusion" which was common from the mid-70s until then. My guess is that as the hard-edged, virtuosity-driven strain had lost critical and popular favor by then, "jazz fusion" meant to make the genre more inclusive of funk and R&B fusions and invoke its acoustic jazz roots while retroactively incorporating "jazz-rock fusion."
  • "Jazz-rock fusion" as I have defined it (apparently without objections here) was coined specifically to encompass post- In a Silent Way Miles Davis and his many alumni, jazz musicians who began playing electric instruments loudly. This can be sourced very readily, and this was enough of a musical movement that it can easily have a stand-alone Wikipedia article. Bear in mind, though, that it's culturally closer to rock than jazz (many long-term jazz fans were alienated by it) and closely aligned with jazz rock (played by rock musicians) and progressive rock. It was played mostly on FM stations which featured progressive rock. ("Smooth jazz" radio stations which play "jazz fusion" came later.)
  • "Jazz rock" is a more difficult term to deal with because it could include everything from R&B-laden rock with jazz instrumentation (Blood, Sweat & Tears) to free-improvising electric avant-garde (Henry Cow). I'm inclined, personally, to leave out the likes of BS&T, Chicago, Steely Dan, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, et. al and deal with their particular jazz influences (deep or shallow) individually in their articles. Jazz rock as a self-conscious movement came out of the same late-60s cauldron of psychedelic rock and the British blues boom that produced progrock, and indeed overlaps closely so that often both genre labels apply. Here I do think it's relevant to touch on seminal rock improvisers like Jimi Hendrix, Cream, Led Zeppelin, Santana, etc. to illustrate the shift towards long improvisations which allowed the acceptance of strongly jazz-influenced playing by rock musicians. Arguably, jazz rock was gestated on the US West Coast, not only by Frank Zappa, but also Charles Lloyd, Emil Richards and other studio musicians trained at the new jazz programs and academies that became widespread after WW2. These experiments quickly cross-fertilized overseas and inspired the British jazz rock movement spearheaded by Soft Machine, a band that went from crude psychedelic experiments to metrically complex, horn-driven modal jazz. I'd focus on this "quirkier" side in an article on jazz rock.
So here are some ideas. I'm not pretending they're quite ready for prime time yet, as they're obviously strongly influenced by my aesthetic priorites and experiences growing up with all this music (I'm 52, so I didn't get any of this stuff here on google :). Please let me know if you'd think it's worthwhile to begin disambiguating this article.
Snardbafulator (talk) 22:12, 15 August 2011 (UTC)
  • I'd agree with Snardbafulator that the fusion term was a relatively late entrant (though a 1969 band called Fusion was playing somewhere between blues-rock and jazz-rock); jazz-rock from the rock side was relatively early: memory says Johnny Echols characterised Love's music as jazz-rock in a 1966-7 article, for example? I had a look back at the 1976 English update of the 1973 version of JE Berendt's "The Jazz Book". Although he talks at some length of the influence of jazz on rock and of rock on jazz, he tends not to use the hyphenated term; nor do I see the word "fusion". Instead he uses the term "electric jazz", on which see also the Jurek review of Jack Johnson cited in this article. (But - I hastily add - I'm not suggesting starting up yet another genre article on Electric jazz!) AllyD (talk) 19:39, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
Thanks, AllyD. I'm still brainstorming this; this would be my first big project as editor and even though my rather long-winded attempts to start a discussion haven't provoked much if any resistance to my ideas, I have a creeping suspicion that if all the Miles guys are pulled out of this page onto a Jazz-Rock Fusion page (brand-new Wikipedia music genre), all hell is going to break loose. This is why I'm trying to build consensus even if it takes me months. The problem, of course, is that "jazz fusion" is today quite adequately sourced to refer also to that music while the term "jazz-rock fusion," aside from titling Julie Coryell's book, exists in the archives of Down Beat and Rolling Stone. Another case of Recentism rearing its gorgeously-groomed head on Wikipedia. One of the things I'm debating is to simply gut this page of the jazz-rock fusion guys and move them to a new article, leave this page as is and create an essentially duplicated article with that material alone or edit down and summarize jazz-rock fusion here with a redirect to the new page which would include all the material currently here plus some minor expansions. Feedback on this would be especially helpful.
As far as critical reassessments go of a music that met mixed reactions from the public at the time of its inception, I'd just suggest that as advanced as their ages are, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, John McLaughlin, etc. are still major draws at jazz festivals. If a critically heavyweight reassessment hasn't been written yet, one is surely overdue.
  • Broadly I agree with Snardbafulator's suggestion of starting to develop a Jazz-rock article. The awkward thing is going to be finding adequate supporting sources. It isn't an area that has aroused much critical reappraisal (and, to be frank, I find that understandable, having sat through too many plodding mid 70s sets by fretboard sprinters over repetitive basslines, which left no lasting impression beyond the taste of sour beer and fags). So maybe the first step would be to locate a set of reliable texts for the refs and build from there, possibly first in UserSpace for comment, then progressing to replace the Jazz-rock redirect when ready? AllyD (talk) 19:50, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
Well, as we say in WikipediaLand, it's notable. I've gotten a bit more support for developing a jazz rock article than a jazz-rock fusion article, but this would be a lot harder than the latter because there are so many more fingers in the pie. Uppage we have folks saying "why not Jimi Hendrix, why not Steely Dan, why not [insert favorite jazzy prog metal band]?" Jazz rock as a self-conscious movement (rather than a descriptor used by reviewers) is much harder to pin down than jazz-rock fusion and much more stylistically diverse. I'd rather leave out the more poppy exemplars but others might disagree. The British jazz rock that emerged from the blues boom is an immense field of musicians; how many of these do we include? Can it be honestly said that Frank Zappa and Soft Machine "led" this movement (something which you can't determine by chart success) or was it even a "movement" as opposed to a tendency? Once again, thoughts here are appreciated. Snardbafulator (talk) 13:17, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
I agree that jazz-rock can be a hard thing to pin down historically and explicitly, and that jazz-rock fusion should definitely get the priority, as it WAS a self-conscious movement with more of a lasting effect. ExplorerPlus (talk) 08:53, 20 August 2011 (UTC)
sorry to be pedantic, but can you guys please use indentation here to keep the thread ordered? also, narrowing the discussion down to sources, and what they say, in direct relation to the subject of the article, would be a good idea, personal views do not make content. I oppose the following suggestion: "One of the things I'm debating is to simply gut this page of the jazz-rock fusion guys and move them to a new article, leave this page as is and create an essentially duplicated article." Duplication makes zero sense, work on improving the existing article, otherwise there will be two sub-standard entries rather than one.--Semitransgenic (talk) 10:01, 20 August 2011 (UTC)

Formatting fixed :) I'd have to disagree, Semitransgenic, that at this point in the consensus-building process, that personal views are somehow irrelevant here (see my comments upthread). If we were to go by sourcing alone, then there'd be no reason to resurrect the term "jazz-rock fusion" because contemporary sources much easier to find on the internet have retroactively subsumed that music into the genre of "jazz fusion." And this, I'm arguing, is another example of recentism because people who were around at that time clearly remember that specific term to describe Miles Davis and his former sidemen playing electric jazz. Those older sources (starting with Julie Coryell's book "Jazz Rock Fusion") can most definitely be found once we're settled here that there's enough of a consensus to begin. So far, I've gotten assent over on the Music Genres Task Force to add "jazz-rock fusion," but I'm waiting to see if there are any good arguments to simply leave that music in "jazz fusion." This is not cut-and-dried; there's a larger debate whether historically acccurate terminology is more appropriate to use on Wikipedia than newer terminology adapted to describe the same thing.

Sorry if I didn't make myself clear, but I see three options: 1) Move the jazz-rock fusion material to the new article with a redirect on this page, 2) Duplicate the jazz-rock fusion material on a new page (which you oppose and I'm inclined to agree) or 3) Leave the JRF artists in this article (because they're properly sourced as "jazz fusion" also) but edit their material way down with a redirect to the new page which would restore that information.

Although Option 1 would work, I think a way to make better articles of both (since the jazz fusion page has been criticized for being too long and amorphous) would be Option 3. I'm beginning to feel a consensus congeal, but further thoughts are most definitely welcome. Snardbafulator (talk) 16:00, 25 August 2011 (UTC)

again, sorry, but I have to disagree, this is entirely about editorial predilection. I would rather see a discussion here based on relevant literature. If reliable sources support your conclusions all well and good. Can you cite sources that support the position you are presenting here? --Semitransgenic (talk) 20:05, 1 September 2011 (UTC)
Of course there are. We'll start with Julie Coryell's book, which is entitled "Jazz Rock Fusion" and which is listed in the sources for the current article. There are also doubtless references to jazz-rock fusion in Down Beat, Rolling Stone and any number of other jazz and rock publication of the era from about 1969 until sometime in the mid-70s when the term eventually became shortened to "fusion." But for those first years, "jazz-rock fusion" referred to electric-period Miles Davis and his musical offspring in such seminal outfits as Mahavishu Orchestra, Return to Forever, Weather Report, Tony Williams Lifetime, etc. Documentation is not the issue (save it would take work, because all of these sources are pre-internet). The issue is whether Wikipedia jazz and fusion editors agree as a matter of consensus to move this material into an article for a historically valid but no longer used genre. I personally believe this should be done, because "jazz fusion" is a demonstrably different music form than it was during its first incarnation with Miles and his alumnae.
"Jazz fusion" is much more general and encompasses much more commercial music, especially today since it also includes the marketing category "smooth jazz." While critics use "jazz fusion" as a shorthand to include "jazz-rock fusion," I think it would be helpful, as well as more respectful to the history of the music, to disambiguate these musicially and historically distinct, although of course closely related, genres.
The question at this point is not whether it can be sourced (I assure you it can; but hypothetically if it turns out I can't find enough sources then I'd of course abandon the idea. I wouldn't write the article before finding the sources), the question is do you agree with doing this as a matter of principle? That's what I'm working to develop consenus on. I've already gotten a green light over at the Music Genres Task force. What's your view? Snardbafulator (talk) 05:42, 5 September 2011 (UTC)
to clarify, I'm not talking about the matter of whether jazz-rock-fusion is a term that has been used to describe a specific style of jazz fusion, the sources requested relate to the statements you have made regarding the invalidity of the term jazz-fusion with respect to it's use in describing the early electric jazz period; and in particular, that it is the product of "recentism."
I would rather see a well sourced section within the "jazz fusion" article that outlines precisely what it is that distinguishes "jazz-rock-fusion" from "jazz fusion" instead of erasing all mention of the jazz-rock-fusion category from this article.
If you could start citing what the sources have to say on the matter it would get the ball rolling. --Semitransgenic (talk) 13:43, 7 September 2011 (UTC)
As a fellow jazz-rock fusion listener, I think that the jazz fusion article should remain the way it is. I think branching off "jazz-rock" from jazz fusion is pointless. In all my years of listening to fusion; "jazz-rock", "jazz fusion", "fusion", & "jazz-rock fusion" have always meant the exact same thing. I thing diving into the whole "jazz-rock" thing is a bit overkill. I think I have been able to find only 1 really good source on the topic. All in all, I think it would be way too difficult and pointless to differentiate between jazz-rock and jazz fusion. Recently, I talked to the original creator of the jazz fusion article. He told me that he totally disagrees with the concept of making "jazz-rock" and "jazz fusion" as two different genres and he also dislikes a few other things done to the article as well. Sprecher (talk) 03:21, 23 October 2011 (UTC)

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The Scaruffi fusion history is just imaginary on his part. Out of Sight And Sound is jazz musicians playing straight ahead flower-power rock in order to make money. Zero jazz content. Conversely, Duster is entirely jazz with free jazz and blues jazz elements, zero rock. Duster has riffs and sounds that you would later hear in the 70s fusion albums, but that doesn't make it fusion.

Fusion started with Miles Davis. The earlier stuff listed is "Captain Hindsight" talking. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:50, 20 December 2013 (UTC)

"no sources describe bebop as a precursor"[edit]

This isn't completely accurate. For example, in Brian Priestley's "Charlie Parker and Popular Music" in Annual Review of Jazz Studies 14 (2009), he writes, "[Parker] might even be seen quite legitimately as a precursor of what is now called 'fusion' music." In the jazz timeline, be-bop is not a direct precursor, but certain aspects of jazz that were original to be-bop were crucial to the subsequent development of fusion. You can see that simply by following Miles Davis from one genre to the other; and also in the influence of Coltrane on not just horn players, but also fusion guitarists and keyboardists. As jazz is cited as a precursor to fusion, and be-bop is a type of jazz, I'm not sure it's worth reverting the edit excising be-bop from the list; but I don't see how jazz gets to fusion without be-bop, so I thought I'd offer this up for consideration. Pstoller (talk) 23:46, 1 July 2016 (UTC)

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the definition of things[edit]

Because I think the definition of things is important I want to objective again to calling this page jazz fusion. Fusion is by definition a fusion of jazz and rock. Misnaming this important form of music dumbs it down. The notion of calling it jazz fusion is straight out of the Department of Redundancy Department. It's not just my opinion. Simply take "Jazz fusion (also known as fusion)" and flip it. Jackhammer111 (talk) 09:18, 7 October 2018 (UTC)

"Fusion is by definition a fusion of jazz and rock." Not really, this is very reductive, it may have meant that, to some music journalists, for a short period in the late 60s/early 70s - when many jazz musicians embraced electric instruments for the first time - but to say that this is what it means in 2018 ignores the fact that blues, RnB, soul, funk (+hip-hop and DnB) and also Latin, African, Indian music etc. have all played a part in the evolution of "jazz fusion." Yes, "fusion" is the word we use colloquially, but we don't mean "jazz rock" by it.Acousmana (talk) 21:13, 7 October 2018 (UTC)
Usually it does still mean rock and jazz. If you say it can be combined with anything, then you end up with no definition. A word that changes all the time can't be defined. A lot of what you have today is smooth jazz, something like pop ballads without lyrics, and what is called contemporary R&B. Musicians can combine anything they want, but that doesn't make it a new genre or a form of fusion. Inventing names for genres has gotten out of control. What might seem new, especially to a young person, really isn't. Most music falls under pop or rock. This is especially true when you look at the structure (verse chorus) and chords (G, C, D) of many songs in many genres.
Vmavanti (talk) 22:28, 7 October 2018 (UTC)
  • The Talk:Jazz_fusion#Ideas section is worth re-reading for past, though non-conclusive, discussion around naming and scope. Personally I see any term using "Fusion" as a latecomer for what I always called Jazz-Rock, but that's maybe just showing my age. A quick Google Ngram is interesting [1], reflecting that earlier usage and showing a continuing relative height of use of "Jazz Rock". It is also interesting to follow some of the early usages, such as Billboard in 1967: "Many record company executives are banking on jazz-rock to be the big new beat for the music business." and Robert Christgau in Esquire 1968 on "talk of a jazz-rock merger. These jazzmen want a new audience." AllyD (talk) 19:12, 8 October 2018 (UTC)