Miroslav Vitous is best known as one of the foremost young bassists in the jazz-rock movement of the late 60's and early 70's. He was a founding member of Weather Report and made numerous solo albums. This album, Magical Shepherd, is making its worldwide CD debut. It features such jazz luminaries as Herbie Hancock, Jack DeJohnette & Airto Moreira. It was originally issued on LP in 1976 on Warner Brothers.
A genuine, pleasurable meeting of minds between 17th-century French lute pieces and 21st-century jazz. A gentle music stamped with midnight brooding. (Source: The Times, UK)
The great Czech bassist returns once more to the music of Weather Report, the group he co-founded with Joe Zawinul and Wayne Shorter in 1970. It’s the improvisational freedom of the early Weather Report that most interests Vitous, and he abides by their old rallying call “everyone solos and no one solos”. Well-known Report repertoire re-explored includes “Birdland”, “Seventh Arrow”, “Scarlet Woman”, “Pinocchio” and “Morning Lake” and Miroslav’s group also plays “Acrobat’s Issues” a piece which the first Weather Report line-up played but didn’t record.
This 1980 quartet session, unavailable in the U.S., features a young Kenny Kirkland on piano along with John Surman on soprano sax and bass clarinet and Jon Christensen on drums. Vitous wrote all but the title track, a tension-filled group improvisation. The dramatic "Silver Lake" begins the disc with rubato filigree and evolves into a driving yet impressionistic feel. "Beautiful Place To" follows, with its odd, Zen-like repeated melody, leading into "Trees," another rubato exploration with a short, precise melodic theme at its core.
Features 24bit digital remastering. Comes with a description. With John McLaughlin, Herbie Hancock, Joe Henderson, and Jack DeJohnette, this group rivaled the best fusion bands of the day. It must have been an intimidating challenge for a young Czech bassist to lead such a group on his debut album as a frontman, especially since he composed five of the six tracks. Recorded in late 1969, roughly the same time as the historic Bitches Brew, and the year before Vitous began a stint with the innovative Weather Report, this was trend-setting fusion. It's produced by Herbie Mann, for whom Vitous played on such albums as Memphis Underground and Stone Flute.