Mindblowing – and a landmark recording that crosses all boundaries in the Chicago music scene of the late 60s! Philip Cohran
was a visionary musician who'd played with Sun Ra during the 60s, but who left Ra to forge his own musical vision by the middle part of the decade. The Artistic Heritage ensemble
was a crucially important group in Chicago – one that drew players from both the soul and jazz scenes, with a wealth of talents that later went onto work with groups like Earth Wind & Fire, The Pharoahs, Ra's Arkestra, and other ensemble
s. Talents on this set alone include players like Charles Handy, Don Myrick, Aaron Dodd, Henry Gibson, and Louis Satterfield – not to mention Cohran
, who plays cornet (as he did with Sun Ra), plus two groovy instruments of his own invention: the violin uke and the great Frankiphone, a sort of electric thumb piano whose use on these recordings pre-dated the very famous Kalimba sound that Earth Wind & Fire would use to great success during the 70s. The album includes the driving conga funk track "Unity", the singing soulful track "The Minstrel", the incredibly haunting "On The Beach", and the track "Motherhood", which has a strong Abbey Lincoln type of feel. Plus, the CD also includes 2 bonus cuts – "New Frankiphone Blues" ( a funky monster that was only ever out on a 7" single), and a great live version of "Unity" from 1968. The whole thing's a beautiful batch of spiritual jazzy tracks with a good groove – and a perfect blend of soul and spirit, jazz and righteousness!