Space Probe is released

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#1 Sun, 2011-01-23 00:17
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Space Probe is released

Saw this discussion on Space Probe on the previous list late last year,
it has now been released by ArtYard Records:


Saturn mailing list for subscribe and unsubscribe options

Sun, 2011-01-23 08:40
Pete Gianakopoulos
Last seen: 9 years 9 months ago
Joined: 2010-12-22 23:35

Space Probe is released


-----Original Message-----

From: Jostein Berntsen <>

To: saturn <>

Sent: Sun, Jan 23, 2011 2:17 am

Subject: [ Saturn ] Space Probe is released

Saw this discussion on Space Probe on the previous list late last year, 
it has now been released by ArtYard Records:


Saturn mailing list for subscribe and unsubscribe options

Sun, 2011-01-23 10:14
Neal Neal Bo Beal
Neal Neal Bo Beal's picture
Last seen: 8 years 3 months ago
Joined: 2010-12-22 23:45

Space Probe is released

Here's a rundown of the extra tracks.

Sun Ra Space Probe Art Yard CD011 Saturn 527 Extended.

1. Space Probe
2. Earth Primitive Earth
3. Circe
4. Solar Symbols II
5. Dance Of The Wind
6. Recollections Of There
7. Destiny
8. The Conversation Of J.P

Saturn : 14200A/B (1974) Saturn 527 Extended.

Sun Ra : moog synth, piano,
intergalactic instruments.
John Gilmore : bass clarinet.
Marshall Allen : flute.
James Jacson : log drums.
Nimrod Hunt : hand drums.
Thea Barbara : vocals.

Sun Ra Space Probe / Choreographers Workshop

The album “Space Probe” was recorded in late August of 1969. Earlier that year Tommy “Bug” Hunter met with Robert Moog to see the possibilities of the moog synthesizer serving as a representative of Sun Ra. There is a recording of the conversation that “Bugs” and Robert Moog had during this meeting as questions were asked and answered.

When Sunny agreed to see Robert Moog and the moog synthesizer, he decided to make a recording of his introduction to the instrument now known as the “Moog Experiment”. Part of this recording was released on CD as the B-side of My Brother The Wind Vol. 2 (Evidence CD tracks 7-11). There are other unreleased tracks from this “Moog, Moog Experiment” recording.

Upon Sunny purchasing the moog synthesizer and bringing it home, he began making recordings and this is where and how “Space Probe” was conceived and would become the first test recording of Sunny on the instrument. Of course a song is created before you give it a name and “Space Probe” is the continuation of the Moog Experiment reflecting a spaceship in outer space looking for a landing place. The music is the language that is spoken as a means of communication as you hear the sound of the spaceship surveying the land before landing.

During his stay in California in 1971, Sunny was able to use the moog synthesizer to reach multi spectrums of tones, again, in the language of The Creator. This was during Sunny’s association with Bobby Seale, Marvin X and The Black Panthers. The Arkestra played gigs at the Native Son, The Warehouse, The Harding Theatre and lectured at Berkeley.

The music Sun Ra and The Arkestra at this time was true “Afrikan / Nubian American Music” and served as a connecting vehicle for blacks who were more in tuned to the consciousness movement musically at the time. This also is to say that the music, “Avant-garde” of this period was a means of blacks having something of their own that represented their struggle as Afrikan Americans. Archie Shepp, Marion Brown, Albert Ayler and so many other Creative Music Afrikan / Nubian American musicians served as the voice of the community like griots and the wise men of the village.

You can’t forget that the consciousness movement or “Soul Revolution” of this time had to do with Afrikan / Nubian Americans identifying with the “Freedom Now” and Muslim doctrines. Importantly to understand is that while Sunny was on the West Coast he had a strong influence on music performers like Frank Zappa (Live At Fillmore 1971) and shortly thereafter, the R&B Funk sound of George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic which brought forth their version of The Mothership Connection. George Clinton and I talked about this briefly in 2003. This is just to name a few performers who were taken into “The Shadow World” of the music of Sun Ra and you know the end result.

Sunny was great in using the moog and other organs as an extension of himself reaching out into the outer spheres. This is why later in the mid 80’s when the Moog, Farfisa and the Yamaha organs were stolen in the Sunny began to strictly play piano and more standard music material. I knew that this unnoticed by others pained him. I would look at the expression on his face and you could see that he had so much more to say but was limited without the organs.

But without the organs, to me it seems that this was the beginning of a kind of end, not musically, but the results would soon show as we lost June Tyson, Elo Omoe, John Gilmore, James Jacson, Sunny, Alton Abraham, Luqman Ali, “Bug”s and Richard Wilkerson.

“Earth Primitive Earth”

Next we take a step back to April 29th of 1962 and the remainder of the “Space Probe” album which consisted of two tracks. The rest of the material used for this release is unreleased left-overs from the “Secrets Of The Sun” and “When Sun Comes Out” releases. The unique aspect of these recordings is that it shows Sunny being influenced by ancient instrumentation and the language which is spoken during each track.

As Sunny always said; “Music IS A Language” and “Music IS The Language Of The Gods”. The music for this recording date, although it has been broken up upon the making of LP releases, displays the ancient and original music that was performed before what we call “The World was conceived as a thought of The Creator.

The Unissued Tracks

Track number 2 begins with the complete versions of “Earth Primitive Earth” or “Primitive” with John Gilmore on bass clarinet and Sunny and others playing percussion. Sunny had just recorded the album “The Futuristic Sounds Of Sun Ra” for Savoy Records in New York and this session is an reminiscent extension of that energy from that period.

Track number 3 is a short rare clip of vocalist Thea Barbara on what sounds like an alternate version of the song “Circe”. Ms. Barbara added another dimension vocally that reflects that ancient type of free flowing vocal conversation within the music. There are a few other unreleased recordings of Ms. Barbara and an unknown gentleman rehearsing with Sun Ra on a church organ prior to these recordings some years earlier.

Track number 4 is an extended alternate take of the composition “Solar Symbols II” beginning with the percussion of tapping on what sounds like cans and cow bells followed by Sunny playing piano. Remarkably this recording is in the context of the primitive aspects of creating natural spontaneous music.

Track number 5 “Dance Of The Wind” is percussion with Sun Ra playing piano reflecting his view of how and what would be the dance of the wind.

Track number 6 “Recollections Of There” is another rare track with vocalist Thea Barbara on vocal who sings in the true art of Afrikan American Classical Music” which we call “Music Of The Spheres”. The conversation with Sunny and Thea with accents of the gong and high hat cymbal, tell the story of the emotions in reflecting on a time when all that existed was in its correct alignment with The Creator. Near the end of this beautiful recording there are some noticeable technical malfunctions with the tape recorder.

Track number 7 “Destiny” is a short clip where Sunny examines the principle of destiny through sound. At this time the tape deck they were using to record also had a control where you could add echo to your recording tracks. Psychedelic you might say!

Track number 8 “The Conversation Of J.P.” is in its complete form and was originally release as the second song on side-B of the “Space Probe” album release. It is believed that this is Marshall Allen playing flute for this track.

In an effort to tell the True Story of my Arkestra Family

“This IS The Alter Destiny”

Michael D. Anderson Executive Director Of The Sun Ra Music Archive

Produced for Art Yard by Michael Anderson. Mastered by Peter Beckmann at Technology Works. Front cover Photographic image of Sun Ra © Jorg Brecker 2010, Design by Art Yard.
In this manner we honour and perpetuate the Sun Ra legacy.
The Art Yard Records, Sun Ra - El Saturn reissue series is sanctioned by Marshall Allen Director of The Sun Ra Alter Destiny 21st century Omniverse Jet Set Arkestra. All compositions and arrangements by Sun Ra. Published by Enterplanetary Koncepts and Cosmic Myth Music. Publishing and Copyright by Art Yard ltd Cosmic Myth Music and Enterplanetary Koncepts.
All rights reserved © 2010 Art Yard ltd.

Special Thanks To Marshall Allen, Michael Ray, Knoel Scott, Danny Ray Thompson, Elson Nascimento and The Sun Ra Alter Destiny 21st Century Echos Arkestra.
Thanks also goes to Sun Ra, John Gilmore, James Jacson, and all the Sun Ra Arkestra Members.

Sun Ra was a ground breaking musician and bandleader of immense vision whose extraordinary work and time on this planet has yet to be fully appreciated.

We hope this series of releases brings Sun Ra’s music to the wider audience it deserves.

"Your brain is simply wired to a nostalgic sense of audio distortion. You hear warmth, you think you hear grandeur, space, subtlety, all these things . . . but actually you're just satisfying an old recording in your brain." -Daniel Richler on vinyl.

Fri, 2011-02-18 16:55
Brad at Saturn
Last seen: 7 years 11 months ago
Joined: 2010-12-29 15:08

Space Probe is released

This is a nice,very good review of Space Probe.I really like the early 1960's Sun Ra recordings like"Cluster of Galaxies",Solar Drums","New Planet",and "Primitive"


I think the title of track#8 is "The Conversion of J.P.,not "Conversation"


This review has a very interesting commentary about organs,how Sun Ra connected to the organs' Vibration...."you could see that he had so much more to say but was limited without the organs"

Music a Neglected Plane of Wisdom