At the same time, he was full of fresh musical inspiration, drawn in part from voracious listening. In Herbie Hancock’s memoirs, possibility, the pianist recognized Williams as a constant source of new and challenging sounds of the 60s, pointing him to radical composers such as Karlheinz Stockhausen and John Cage. “I was always asking him, ‘What are you listening to?’ Because I knew he could learn something,” Hancock wrote.
While keeping up with the latest avant-garde developments, Williams also immersed himself in the pop music of the time. He grew up in doo-wop in his 50s, singing lead in a group called the Monticellos. He became a proud Beatlemaniac in the ’60s, though he disappointed some of his jazz buddies. endure for life. During this decade, the drummer paid close attention as rock got progressively wilder and louder.he will later characterize flip it overSecond Lifetime album, “My version of kick out the jam” by MC5.for emergency!Other rock luminaries such as , Cream, The Who and The Jimi Hendrix Experience sparked.
In an interview conducted during the early Lifetime era, Williams talked about amplified and overdriven rock like a tractor beam, drawing him in. down beat 1970 Hendrix have you experienced As a touchstone, “…and it started to excite me, and I wanted to hear more of it.”
If Lifetime’s rock trap was resolutely modern, the basic composition of the group dates back to roughly a decade ago, when Williams was working with Johnny “Hammond” Smith in his early days. In its early days, the organ his trio was considered the pinnacle of swinging soulfulness, with the instrument itself serving as a direct link between modern his jazz and traditional gospel and blues. “From the late 1950s he wanted a group with an organ trio going back to my roots in Boston, which he played in the early ’60s,” he later recalled. I was wondering why not do it, more aggressive, more rock oriented than blues oriented? Nothing new. What matters is how you use it and how you combine it. ”
The format may have been retro, but the staff, with two masters Williams handpicked from very different backgrounds, was cutting edge. In the early to mid-’60s, Newark-born Larry Young moved from soul jazz (sometimes working in the classic organ/guitar/drum format Williams revived in his lifetime) to a forward-looking post-his progressed to bop. McLaughlin spent his previous decade as a hired guitarist in the London scene, Miles and John. , was playing R&B. After hearing a tape of McLaughlin playing at London’s jazz mecca Ronnie Scott’s, Williams said that he was playing, as the drummer later said, “in a very aggressive way and not very politely.” I immediately called him and invited him to New York.