David Pritchard - Light-Year

Guitarist-composer David Pritchard was a member of the Gary Burton Quartet in 1969. In the 1970s he formed and led the jazz-rock fusion group Contraband with keyboardist Pete Robinson, a period when he recorded two high-quality fusion albums for Inner City. In more recent times, he has mostly focused on acoustic and classical guitars, forming an acoustic guitar quintet and creating musical soundscapes by overdubbing many of his guitars.

Light-Year was recorded in 1978 and finds Pritchard (on electric guitar) leading a quintet also featuring Charles Orena on tenor and soprano, keyboardist Ted Saunders, bassist Larry Klein and drummer Paul Kreibich. The fusion music, which consists of seven Pritchard originals, mixes together jazz, rock, New Age, World Music and light funk. The style looks towards both Weather Report and the more introspective music that Pritchard currently plays. The catchy “Black Moon,” the spiritual ballad “Hotel Spirit,” and the episodic jazz waltz “Glider” are among the highlights of this excellent release from the underrated but talented David Pritchard.

SKU: IC1047

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Enjoy guitarist David Pritchard's jazz-fusion compositions on this Inner City re-release. Also featuring Charles Orena - tenor & soprano saxophones, bass clarinet; Ted Saunders - acoustic & electric piano; Larry Klein - acoustic & electric bass; and Paul Kreibich - drums.

Additional Info

Additional Info

Format: Jazz Record
Soloist/Artist David Pritchard
Instruments Music and Musicians
Composer No
Accompanist/ Conductor Charles Orena - tenor & soprano saxophones, bass clarinet; Ted Saunders - acoustic & electric piano; Larry Klein - acoustic & electric bass; and Paul Kreibich - drums
SKU IC1047


Customer Reviews (2)

Intriguing "Light!"Review by Big Toots
IC 1047 Light-Year David Pritchard

Although not as widely known as his fellow guitarist and contemporary music explorer, Pat Metheny, David Pritchard shares plenty in common. Both were part of vibraphonist Gary Burton’s group (with Pritchard pre-dating Metheny’s tenure) and both tend to work in a highly textured, eclectic format. They both embrace aspects of straight-ahead jazz and its smoother jazz sister. They use “New Age” meditative original material that is improvisationally intense, with less-conspicuous, easily-grasped melodic platforms that propel and generate the extended improvisations that follow.

Light-Year is all about textures and layers thereof – and there are plenty throughout this 7-cut effort. Pritchard and his quartet are adept in moving the listener across and through sonorities and rhythmic landscapes. “Black Moon” sets the tone for the date with keyboard, guitar and soprano dancing above the repetitive groove below. It is a tonality that is somewhat familiar to fans of “Weather Report” and other “Fusion” groups. Charles Oreña’s robust tenor (with shades of Ernie Watts) is a mysterious Siren, beckoning seductively on “Hotel Spirit.” He is equally marvelous on soprano. “Dry Lake” is a perfect example of a simple descending melodic line with a thick pulse beat that launches all, including Pritchard, to explore and develop their individual and collective takes. Stylistically, Pritchard is terrific. He spins faster, energized lines across frets each foray and has light-speed technical chops. Pianist Ted Saunders comps and feeds lines without toe-stepping (“Glider”). “Mirage” lives up to title with Pritchard riffing again over Larry Klein’s bass and Paul Kreibich’s neat set work. “Inner Voice” again uses obligato pulsation as a springboard for all to develop and musically mesh. Composer Pritchard seems to favor that texture. It is, however, a device used here repetitively.

Light-Year possesses moments of brilliant musicianship over eclectic and electric textures that will seem familiar. There aren’t any new musical galaxies developed here. However, all is approachable, enjoyable and demonstrative of a group of very talented musicians.

(Posted on 5/5/2015)
Light-YearReview by Simon Sez
David Pritchard is a guitarist with a lot of different experiences in music. He worked with Gary Burton, played fusion, and today is mostly an acoustic guitarist whose music is closer to New Age.

Light-Year has David Pritchard in the late 1970s on electric guitar playing fusion that sounds a little like Weather Report. The music (his seven originals) is funky, and emotional but also sometimes pretty thoughtful. There are good spots for saxophonist Charles Orena and electric pianist Ted Saunders along with Pritchard, who is heard at his best. I wish that he had recorded a lot more in this style.

Simon Sez: David Pritchard, who today plays folkish acoustic guitar, on Light-Year from the 1970s shows that he was a great fusion guitarist.
(Posted on 5/6/2014)

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