Juma Sultan, Jimi Hendrix, and the NYC loft scene

On January 23, 2012 by Will Hermes

I finally got a copy of Father of Origin, the lavish box set of unreleased recordings by Juma Sultan and the Aboriginal Music Society. Wow. A taste and description can be found here.

Sultan was one of the most important and yet least-know figures involved in the New York City loft scene, a real pioneer. The AMS never made a record, and this material marks the free jazz group’s very first release, some 40+ years after the material was recorded. More on Juma Sultan here.

Sultan spent some formative time in Woodstock, New York, where he had been running a sort of musician-centered collectivist commune until one of the members stole the money the group had saved for the next year’s rent. Around that time, in 1969, Jimi Hendrix blew into town, feeling out the real Woodstock a week before the festival that had been relocated to Bethel. The men did a show together at the Tinker Street Cinema (where I still go to see films regularly) that was widely bootlegged. The quality is sketchy at best. But it’s a tantalizing glimpse of a direction Hendrix might have explored further had he lived longer.

Here’s all 30+ minutes of it; enjoy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.