About this item
Soul Jazz Records / Universal Sound reissue jazz composer Oliver Lake’s ‘NTU: The Point From Which Creation Begins’, his stunning rhythmical Afro-centric deep spiritual jazz debut album originally recorded in 1971. This classic spiritual deep jazz album has been digitally remastered and is available in bespoke original exact reproduction artwork on hardboard Japanese-style boxcase CD, very limited (1000 worldwide) heavyweight 180gm audiophile vinyl. This album features in Gilles Peterson / Soul Jazz Records’ own ‘Freedom, Rhythm And Sound’ large-format book of revolutionary jazz.
Oliver Lake’s career began in a creatively charged time and place. In the late 1960s Lake, alongside Julius Hemphill and Charles ‘Bobo’ Shaw, co-founded The Black Artists Group (BAG), the St Louis-based equivalent to Chicago’s Art Ensemble Of Chicago / Association For The Advancement Of Creative Musicians collectives. Out of this BAG collective came many other variant groups and arts projects, which included The Human Arts Ensemble, Red Black & Green Solidarity Unit, Onawali Dancers, Malinque Rhythm Tribe, BAG Drama Dept., Great Black Music Orchestra of St. Louis, Fire-Earth-Air-Water, Me We & Them and the Julius Hemphill Quartet.
In 1971, after appearing on two collective projects by The Human Art Ensemble and Children Of The Sun, Oliver Lake recorded his own debut album ‘NTU: The Point From Which Creation Begins’, self-financed for release on his own Passin Thru’ record company. However, shortly afterwards the tape of this album was put in storage, as Lake and the other BAG members headed off to Europe in the path of The Art Ensemble of Chicago and other free jazz African-American musicians, many of whom were finding a new open-minded audience across the Atlantic.
‘NTU: The Point From Which Creation Begins’ remained unreleased until 1976 when an association with major label Arista / Freedom issued a number of Lake and the Black Artists Group’s early releases and unreleased tapes. Long unavailable, this album has now become a rarity itself.
Heavily progressive, rhythmical and intense, the album features Lake alongside an all-star cast of St. Louis’s finest radical, avant-garde and deep jazz musicians, including Joe Bowie (Lester’s brother, who also later formed Defunkt and worked with James White And The Blacks), Don Moye (on loan from the Art Ensemble Of Chicago), and regulars such as Charles Bobo Shaw.
Electric Freedom Colors