KOCH Records has announced the release of The Acatama Experience, the new album by legendary jazz-rock violinist Jean-Luc Ponty, on May 22nd, 2007. Jean-Luc Ponty is a pioneer and unquestioned jazz immortal. He is widely regarded as an innovator who has applied a visionary spin that has expanded the vocabulary of modern music in numerous directions, combining jazz, electronics, classical and world music into an eternally progressive blend.
Jean-Luc's career spans five decades, and he has appeared on over 70 recordings, including works by Frank Zappa, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, and countless others. In the 1970s Ponty spearheaded -- along with Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke and others -- America's growing jazz-rock movement, filling stadiums around the world and cracking the Top 40 with his albums Enigmatic Ocean and Cosmic Messenger. Since then, he has maintained a worldwide touring profile and a large, loyal fan base.
The Acatama Experience is Ponty's first studio album in several years; it's a joyful, romantic and colorful instrumental journey that moves from his home in Paris (a funk-fueled reading of Bud Powell's classic Parisian Thoroughfare), to the mountain deserts of South America (the atmospheric, electronic title piece), with stops in Ireland (Celtic Steps) and the mysterious streets of Bombay, India. Musically, the album flows between electronic funk, virtuoso jazz-rock, Latin percussion, impressionistic soundscapes and lyrical balladry. Tying it all together is Jean-Luc's stunning virtuosity, particularly compelling on the solo turn, Desert Crossing.
The Acatama Experience is performed by Ponty's touring group, with two very special guests on guitar: jazz master Philip Catherine and fusion immortal Allan Holdsworth. It's an album that redefines and repositions Jean-Luc Ponty at the very center of the contemporary jazz and progressive music experience