“Motherfucker” is one word you could use to describe John McLaughlin. The legendary British jazz guitarist, along with his current band 4th Dimension, certainly lived up that pithy epithet last night in a show at the Melbourne Recital Centre as part of the Melbourne Festival. It was one of McLaughlin’s former band leaders, Miles Davis, who recognised...Read More
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What first attracted me to jazz was that, unlike in classical music, I was actually able to still see in concert performers who created a musical style or genre. Guys like Mozart, Beethoven or Mahler were long gone, so all I could ever experience was someone else’s interpretation of these masters. In jazz, I was actually able to see Earl Hines, Benny...Read More
John McLaughlin’s magnificent new album more than justifies his disinclination to hang up his guitar. FUSION : Black Light Septuagenarian John McLaughlin, the silver-maned demigod of jazz-rock, shows no signs of slowing down as a guitar player, as a performance and recording artist or as a passionate prodder of musical boundaries. The urbane Englishman’s...Read More
I’m not dead yet! » Guitar legend John McLaughlin talks to SJF about life, death, retirement and his brilliant new album, ‘Black Light.
JOHN McLAUGHLIN – without doubt the doyen of jazz-rock guitarists, now 73 – is in a deeply philosophical mood. « I don’t have ambitions like I used to when I was a young man, » he reveals. « The older I get the more aware of my mortality I become, especially when you hit the biblical age of seventy. Every day over that is a present, a...Read More
Purists loathe him and the feeling, it seems, is mutual. John McLaughlin calls them « the bane of the world » and has variously upset the jazz purists by being too rocky, the fusion ones by being too Indian and the Indian ones by being too Western. Meanwhile the jazz pioneer, who is touring Australia this month, has left a trail of era-defining albums and...Read More