Psychedelic Rock with a Jazz Twist

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Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


Psychedelic Rock with a Jazz Twist is a blog that explores the musical genre of Psychedelic Rock with a Jazz Twist.

Introducing Psychedelic Jazz

Psychedelic jazz, or psyjazz, is a subgenre of jazz that draws inspiration from psychedelic rock and Afrofuturism. The genre is characterized by its experimental and avant-garde approach to jazz, as well as its use of electronic effects.Psychedelic jazz is often seen as a reaction against the traditional values of jazz, and its focus on innovation and exploration.

What is Psychedelic Jazz?

Psychedelic jazz, sometimes called “jazz-fusion”, is a genre of music that combines elements of both genres to create a unique sound. Psychedelic jazz often has extended improvisational sections and uses electronic effects, such as delay and reverb, to create a “trippy” sound. This genre of music first gained popularity in the 1970s, with artists such as Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, and Weather Report leading the way.

Psychedelic jazz is often seen as a precursor to later genres such as acid jazz and nu-jazz. These genres were indebted to psychedelic jazz for their innovative use of electronics and improvisation, but they also added different elements to create their own sound. If you’re a fan of either genre, then you’ll likely enjoy psychedelic jazz.

Where did it come from?

Psychedelic jazz is a genre that takes the mind-expanding possibilities of psychedelic rock and applies them to the improvisational nature of jazz. The result is music that is both experimental and accessible, often with a funky edge. It’s a style that melds the best of both worlds and has been gaining in popularity in recent years.

Psychedelic jazz can trace its origins back to Miles Davis’ seminal 1968 album Bitches Brew. This landmark record saw Davis experimenting with electric instruments and tape manipulation, creating a sound that was atmospheric and otherworldly. It was a major influence on subsequent generations of musicians, including those who would go on to create psychedelic jazz.

Other important early figures in the genre include saxophonists Pharoah Sanders and Sun Ra, both of whom released groundbreaking records in the 1960s. Sanders’ 1968 album Karma is a particular highlight, as it blended free jazz with elements of Eastern music to create something truly unique. Similarly, Sun Ra’s 1971 album Strange Strings featured him playing an electrified viola supported by an orchestra, resulting in a ethereal and beautiful soundscape.

In more recent years, there have been a number of excellent psychedelic jazz releases, including Medeski Martin & Wood’s 2009 album Radiolarians III and Matthew Halsall’s 2013 album When The World Was One. If you’re looking to explore this fascinating genre further, these are definitely two albums worth checking out.

Key Artists

Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention, Pink Floyd, and Soft Machine are all key artists in the Psychedelic Rock with a Jazz Twist genre. Psychedelic Rock with a Jazz Twist is a genre that is a mix of Psychedelic Rock and Jazz. It is a genre that is often overlooked, but these artists have made it what it is today.

Miles Davis

Miles Davis (May 26, 1926 – September 28, 1991) was an American jazz trumpeter, bandleader, and composer. He is among the most influential and acclaimed figures in the history of jazz and 20th century music. With his ever-changing groups, Davis invented progressive jazz, shifting the focus of the genre from collective improvisation to individual expression. In 1955, he recorded the influential album Kind of Blue with his sextet featuring John Coltrane and Cannonball Adderley. His early quintet, which included saxophonist John Coltrane and pianist Red Garland, recorded a string of influential albums during 1957–59 that established him as one of history’s greatest innovators.

John Coltrane

John Coltrane was an American jazz saxophonist and composer who was one of the most influential and innovative musicians of his generation. He first came to prominence in the 1940s as a member of the Miles Davis Quintet, where he helped to redefine the role of the saxophone in jazz. In the 1950s, he pioneered the use of modal harmony and extended harmonic improvised solos, which helped to lay the groundwork for free jazz. He also led his own highly acclaimed groups in the 1960s, including the John Coltrane Quartet, which featured pianist McCoy Tyner, bassist Jimmy Garrison, and drummer Elvin Jones. His later work explored Indian music, African rhythms, and other influences from around the world.

Coltrane’s passionate playing and groundbreaking work had a profound impact on subsequent generations of musicians, and he is widely considered to be one of the greatest saxophonists in history. He also had a significant impact on popular culture; his music was featured in films such as Woodstock (1970) and Groundhog Day (1993), and his face was used on an iconic album cover for The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967).

Pharaoh Sanders

Sanders is one of the most well-known and controversial figures in jazz. He’s known for his intensely personal playing style, which often incorporates wailing cries, screams, wails, and moans. He’s also known for his political outspokenness, particularly regarding race relations. Sanders began his career playing with Sun Ra’s Arkestra before going on to lead his own groups and record a series of highly acclaimed albums.

The Sound of Psychedelic Jazz

Psychedelic jazz is a genre of music that fuses elements of jazz and psychedelic rock. The result is a sound that is both trippy and groovy. Psychedelic jazz first emerged in the late 1960s, and it has been gaining popularity ever since. If you’re a fan of either jazz or psychedelic rock, you’ll definitely enjoy psychedelic jazz.


Side 2 of this album is one continuous improvisation by the band. It starts with some wonderful electric piano from Earl Zindars and then expands outward from there. The saxophone playing is top-notch throughout, and the rest of the band is rock-solid. This is an excellent example of psychedelic jazz, and it’s well worth seeking out.

Eclectic Influences

Psychedelic jazz, or psychedelic soul, is a subgenre of jazz that combines elements of jazz, soul, funk, and rock with psychedelic textures and themes. Musically, it is similar to acid jazz. This subgenre first emerged in the late 1960s when artists like Miles Davis and John Coltrane began incorporating elements of rock and R&B into their music. In the 1970s, artists like Herbie Hancock and George Clinton continued to push the boundaries of this genre by adding even more elements of funk and soul. By the end of the decade, psychedelic jazz had evolved into a fully-fledged genre with its own unique sound.

In the 1980s and 1990s, many young musicians were drawn to psychedelic jazz because of its eclectic influences. These musicians grew up listening to a wide range of music, from classic jazz to contemporary hip-hop. As a result, they were able to bring fresh new ideas to the genre and create their own unique sound. Today, there are many different subgenres of psychedelic jazz, each with its own distinct flavor.

Free-flowing Structure

Psychedelic jazz, also known as jazzy psychedelia, is a subgenre of psychedelic rock that combines elements of jazz and psychedelic rock. Musically, it is characterized by free-flowing improvisation, odd time signatures, extended chords, and altered states of consciousness. It often features trumpets, saxophones, and other horns.

The genre originated in the late 1960s with Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew and continued into the 1970s with further experimental records such as Daviss’ On the Corner and Herbie Hancock’s Mwandishi. Psychedelic jazz subsequentl

Why You Should Listen to Psychedelic Jazz

Psychedelic jazz is a genre that takes the best of both worlds and creates something unique and special. It’s perfect for those who want to relax and escape from the everyday grind. The combination of the two genres creates a sound that is both pleasing and exciting to the ears.

It’s Innovative

Psychedelic jazz, also known as “jazz-funk” or “jazz fusion”, is a style of music that combines elements of both genres to create a unique and innovative sound. This type of music is often experimental and can be very powerful and influential. It has been said that psychedelic jazz is the “missing link” between jazz and rock.

Psychedelic jazz often incorporates elements of free jazz, which means that the musicians improvise extensively and there is no set structure or melody. This can make the music seem chaotic at times, but it also allows for a great deal of creativity and freedom. The result is a truly unique experience that can be both exciting and enlightening.

In addition to being innovative, psychedelic jazz is also highly accessible. Unlike some other genres, it does not require a great deal of prior knowledge or experience to appreciate. Whether you’re a fan of jazz or rock, or even if you’re simply looking for something new and different, psychedelic jazz is definitely worth checking out.

It’s Relaxing

With its focus on ambiance and atmosphere, psychedelic jazz is the perfect music to relax to. The ebb and flow of the music, combined with the often mind-bending sounds and textures, can create a sense of calm and tranquility. Whether you’re looking to wind down after a long day or just want to relax in your own company, psychedelic jazz is an excellent choice.

It’s Influential

Psychedelic jazz, sometimes referred to as “jazz fusion,” is a genre that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s. It’s a combination of traditional jazz and rock, infused with elements of psychedelic music. Psychedelic jazz is characterized by extended improvisation, unusual sounds, and an overall trippy feel.

The genre was pioneered by Miles Davis with his 1968 album, “In a Silent Way.” Other influential psychedelic jazz albums include Herbie Hancock’s “Maiden Voyage” (1965), Wayne Shorter’s “Native Dancer” (1974), and John McLaughlin’s “My Goal’s Beyond” (1971).

Psychedelic jazz continues to be made today by artists like Kamasi Washington, Thundercat, Hiatus Kaiyote, and BadBadNotGood. If you’re a fan of jazz or rock, or if you’re looking for something new to explore, psychedelic jazz is definitely worth checking out.

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