JEAN-LUC PONTY

Fusion / Post Bop / Third Stream / Hard Bop • France
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Jean-Luc Ponty (born September 29, 1942) is a virtuoso French violinist and jazz composer.

Born in Avranches, France, he was trained as a professional classical violinist at the Paris Conservatory. His attraction to jazz was propelled by Miles Davis's and John Coltrane's music.

He has worked with Stéphane Grappelli, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Frank Zappa, and has appeared on over seventy recordings.

In 1977 he pioneered the use of the 5-string electric violin, with a lower C string. He sometimes also uses a 6-string electric violin called the Violectra, with low C and F strings – not to be confused with the violectra he played from the late 1960s to the mid-80s which had 4 strings, but tuned an octave lower. Ponty was among the first to combine the violin with MIDI, distortion boxes, phase shifters, and wah-wah pedals. This resulted in his signature, almost synthesizer-like sound.

In 2005 Ponty
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Thanks to EZ Money, kazuhiro, snobb for the updates

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JEAN-LUC PONTY Discography

JEAN-LUC PONTY albums / top albums

JEAN-LUC PONTY Jazz Long Playing album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jazz Long Playing
Hard Bop 1964
JEAN-LUC PONTY Sunday Walk album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Sunday Walk
Post Bop 1967
JEAN-LUC PONTY More Than Meets the Ear album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
More Than Meets the Ear
Fusion 1968
JEAN-LUC PONTY Electric Connection album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Electric Connection
Fusion 1969
JEAN-LUC PONTY King Kong album cover 3.67 | 6 ratings
King Kong
Fusion 1970
JEAN-LUC PONTY Ponty & Sato: Astrorama (with Masahiko Sato) album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
Ponty & Sato: Astrorama (with Masahiko Sato)
Fusion 1970
JEAN-LUC PONTY Open Strings album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Open Strings
Fusion 1972
JEAN-LUC PONTY Ponty - Grappelli album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Ponty - Grappelli
Fusion 1973
JEAN-LUC PONTY Upon the Wings of Music album cover 4.00 | 6 ratings
Upon the Wings of Music
Fusion 1975
JEAN-LUC PONTY Imaginary Voyage album cover 3.51 | 14 ratings
Imaginary Voyage
Fusion 1976
JEAN-LUC PONTY Aurora album cover 3.78 | 9 ratings
Aurora
Fusion 1976
JEAN-LUC PONTY Enigmatic Ocean album cover 3.94 | 28 ratings
Enigmatic Ocean
Fusion 1977
JEAN-LUC PONTY Cosmic Messenger album cover 3.72 | 9 ratings
Cosmic Messenger
Fusion 1977
JEAN-LUC PONTY A Taste for Passion album cover 2.32 | 5 ratings
A Taste for Passion
Fusion 1979
JEAN-LUC PONTY Civilized Evil album cover 3.67 | 6 ratings
Civilized Evil
Fusion 1980
JEAN-LUC PONTY Mystical Adventures album cover 3.50 | 10 ratings
Mystical Adventures
Fusion 1981
JEAN-LUC PONTY Individual Choice album cover 3.25 | 4 ratings
Individual Choice
Fusion 1983
JEAN-LUC PONTY Open Mind album cover 4.00 | 5 ratings
Open Mind
Fusion 1984
JEAN-LUC PONTY Fables album cover 3.33 | 3 ratings
Fables
Fusion 1985
JEAN-LUC PONTY The Gift of Time album cover 2.88 | 4 ratings
The Gift of Time
Fusion 1987
JEAN-LUC PONTY Storytelling album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Storytelling
Fusion 1989
JEAN-LUC PONTY Tchokola album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Tchokola
Fusion 1991
JEAN-LUC PONTY No Absolute Time album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
No Absolute Time
Fusion 1993
JEAN-LUC PONTY Life Enigma album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Life Enigma
Fusion 2001
JEAN-LUC PONTY With Kurt Edelhagen & his Orchestra album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
With Kurt Edelhagen & his Orchestra
Third Stream 2001
JEAN-LUC PONTY The Acatama Experience album cover 4.00 | 3 ratings
The Acatama Experience
Fusion 2007

JEAN-LUC PONTY EPs & splits

JEAN-LUC PONTY live albums

JEAN-LUC PONTY Jean-Luc Ponty: Live At Donte's album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Jean-Luc Ponty: Live At Donte's
Fusion 1969
JEAN-LUC PONTY The Jean Luc Ponty Experience with the George Duke Trio (aka Live In Los Angeles) album cover 3.98 | 3 ratings
The Jean Luc Ponty Experience with the George Duke Trio (aka Live In Los Angeles)
Post Bop 1969
JEAN-LUC PONTY Live In Montreux 72 (aka Sonata Erotica) album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Live In Montreux 72 (aka Sonata Erotica)
Fusion 1972
JEAN-LUC PONTY Live album cover 3.91 | 9 ratings
Live
Fusion 1979
JEAN-LUC PONTY Live at Chene Park album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Live at Chene Park
Fusion 1997
JEAN-LUC PONTY Live at Semper Opera album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live at Semper Opera
Fusion 2002

JEAN-LUC PONTY demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

JEAN-LUC PONTY re-issues & compilations

JEAN-LUC PONTY Portrait album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Portrait
Fusion 1970
JEAN-LUC PONTY Jean-Luc Ponty Meets Giorgio Gaslini album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jean-Luc Ponty Meets Giorgio Gaslini
Avant-Garde Jazz 1974
JEAN-LUC PONTY Canteloupe Island album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Canteloupe Island
Fusion 1976
JEAN-LUC PONTY Le Voyage album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Le Voyage
Fusion 1996
JEAN-LUC PONTY Jazz Violin Summit (With Stephane Grappelli And Stuff Smith) album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
Jazz Violin Summit (With Stephane Grappelli And Stuff Smith)
Swing 1999
JEAN-LUC PONTY The Best of the Pacific Jazz Years album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Best of the Pacific Jazz Years
Fusion 2001
JEAN-LUC PONTY Original Album Series 1975-1978 (5CD BoxSet) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Original Album Series 1975-1978 (5CD BoxSet)
Fusion 2012
JEAN-LUC PONTY Original Album Series vol. 2 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Original Album Series vol. 2
Fusion 2016
JEAN-LUC PONTY The Atlantic Years album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Atlantic Years
Fusion 2018

JEAN-LUC PONTY singles (0)

JEAN-LUC PONTY movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
In Concert
Fusion 2003

JEAN-LUC PONTY Reviews

JEAN-LUC PONTY Ponty & Sato: Astrorama (with Masahiko Sato)

Album · 1970 · Fusion
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snobb
With full respect to French violinist Jean-Luc Ponty for his work as sideman in Mashavishnu Orchestra and partially with Frank Zappa, I have never been a big fan of his solo albums. Ponty's transformation of Gipsy swing to violin shred for middle-class sofa rockers didn't sound attractive,what for sure is a question of taste.

This Ponty early collaborative work attracted me first of all because of Japanese pianist Masahiko Sato,who is stated as co-leader. Sato in late 60s-early 70s was a true free jazz idol on Japanese scene,so I was curious what can he do in a company like this.

Recorded (and released) in 1970, "Astrorama" contains four originals,three -Ponty's and one Sato's. With no doubt it is Ponty's album first of all - his violin fusion shredding absolutely dominates here even if experienced ear can hear some interesting Sato soloing in few places. In accordance with a long lasting Japanese jazz tradition local musicians tried to collaborate with renowned Western jazz stars, such gigs or recordings were tickets of sort to domestic Jazz hall of fame.

Sato, who at the moment of "Astrorama" recording already built up the reputation of most innovative and revolutionary of Japanese "new jazz" pianist,plays electric piano here trying to adapt his very different techniques to Ponty quite conservative jazz fusion's requirements. As a result he sounds more as Corea (or Hancock) on their very early fusion recordings. Rest of the band don't help much as well - drummer Motohiko Hino (brother of renown trumpeter Terumasa Hino) is well known by his heavyweight drumming manners,fitting better to fusion or rock jazz than to more subtle genres. Unknown to me guitarist Yoshiaki Masuo doesn't shine much, and the last quintet member is a European mainstream jazz legend Dane Niels Henning Orsted Pedersen. His presence in band for sure increased the quintet status a lot, but physical and quite conservative groovy acoustic bass lines adds even more eclectics to far not very organic band.

As one can expect from such line-up,resulting music is quite a mixed bag. Ponty feels a true leader and obviously dominates with quite enthusiastic support from electric guitarist and drummer. Sato balances with different success between electric piano fusion passages and more complex,free and partially psychedelic pieces which not always fit well.

Still the year is 1970 and creativity is in the air so in whole "Astrorama" is quite rewarding listening,representing one of deviations of classic fusion on the early stage of the genre.

JEAN-LUC PONTY Live

Live album · 1979 · Fusion
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moodyxadi
This album was my introduction for all jazz things. I'm not a jazz aficcionado although I really like bebop and some fusion. Coming from a classic rock background I never care to any jazz til this album came to my hands. It was an wonderful experience because it keeps all the rock energy I was used to blended with that classic jazz/fusion touch. From then on I started to seek Ponty's stuff wherever I was. It came to be that it was his Atlantic years that touch me most and this album is a short but elegant sum of his Alantic output at the time. All in all you have a wonderful band where I must mention Ralphe Armstrong and Casey Scheuerell as the obvious rivals to the man himself. It's a pity there isn't any video from this tour (only the Montreal 82 VOIO is closer but then only keyboard man Zavod is present), it would be great.

If any of you really likes this album I strongly recommend the Lampinski recording of the Pawtucket concert in 1978.

JEAN-LUC PONTY Enigmatic Ocean

Album · 1977 · Fusion
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Warthur
A high-class late 1970s fusion album from Jean-Luc Ponty, with unexpectedly catchy tunes showing a very mild (but quite noticeable) disco and funk influence. Whilst the idea of disco fusion might sound disastrous, Ponty and his backing musicians show superb judgement in precisely how much disco they allow to creep in, hitting a perfect balance where they use enough to keep things vibrant, energetic, upbeat and catchy, without going too far into schmaltzy kitsch territory. Ponty also makes sure to get the best use out of the talent available to him, the electric guitar contributions of Allan Holdsworth being particularly high quality.

JEAN-LUC PONTY Imaginary Voyage

Album · 1976 · Fusion
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js
"Imaginary Voyage" is just one of thousands of funk and progressive rock influenced jazz fusion records that came out in the mid-70s. The songs on this album are good and the musicians are excellent, but give it a spin and boredom is likely to set in before the album is finished. One of the first problems with this record is that it came out in 1976 instead of the earlier part of that decade. If this record had come out before '74 the music would have been fresh and innovative and it would have shown in the musician's playing. Instead, by '76 these guys had already been playing this style, or similar styles, in various bands for more than half a decade. The fact that these guys are on familiar territory shows in the spotless but risk-free solos.

Another problem with this record is the production. For some reason, as the decade wore on, producers felt a need to make jazz fusion into some sort of modern muzak, or fuzak as it has often been referred to. The compression on here is so tight that all the highs and lows in the volume have been taken out leaving a bland sameness. The equalization also aims for that washed-out middle ground. It's a shame because any attempt at high energy playing just doesn't come across on the speakers.

There are two songs on here that deserve special mention, one bad and the other good. "New Country" is the bad, it consists of a pounding disco beat topped with hoe-down fiddle music, need I say more. The good is "Imaginary Voyage" part II which is one of those mysterious Scriabin-like chord progressions that used to be popular with John McLaughlin and people who worked with him in the early 70s. This is a style of jazz-fusion that unfortunately has faded over the years.

This isn't a bad record, but it could have been a lot better if the producers hadn't tried to so hard to squelch everything, and if the musicians would have been willing to take a few risks.

JEAN-LUC PONTY Jazz Violin Summit (With Stephane Grappelli And Stuff Smith)

Boxset / Compilation · 1999 · Swing
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Slartibartfast
This album is a real odd bird. I found the LP many years ago in a bin at a salvage store. The credits were rather poor on the LP as they are also on the 1999 CD release. I welcome anyone out there who has better information on this album to send in an update for the entry of this because I'd really like to know more about it.

It's listed on Jean Luc's web site as "Violin Summit" 1966, which is correct for the last six tracks (second side of the LP). The first five tracks are what are really of interest to most Ponty fans. The first five tracks are obviously not from 1966 but most likely from the early 70's, judging from the style of the music. One of the biggest clues here is track three - Memorial Jam for Stuff Smith, who died in 1967.

Some interesting footnotes, Stuff Smith is credited in the liner notes as being "one of the first to play amplified violin". Grappelli was one of the masters of Jazz violin most famous for playing with Django Reinhart in the Hot Club of France band. I had the honor of shaking his hand at his trailer when he played at Chastain Park, Atlanta many years ago!

I've been enjoying this album's music for many years (first side mainly) and it's certainly a must have for Ponty fans. Obscure yet obtainable.

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JEAN-LUC PONTY Shouts

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Steve Wyzard wrote:
more than 2 years ago
His 5 best albums:

1. Open Mind
2. Enigmatic Ocean
3. Individual Choice
4. Imaginary Voyage
5. Aurora

snobb wrote:
more than 2 years ago
Individual Choice added. Collaborations albums are placed under FIRST musician, mentioned on the cover,name: " Rite Of Strings" has its place in Stanley Clarke discog
Zarathustra wrote:
more than 2 years ago
You're missing a( great)n album: 1983's "Individual Choice" with Allan Holdsworth, George Duke, Randy Jackson and Rayford Griffin! And where do I find "Rite of Strings" and "Trio!" his projects with Stanley Clarke and Al DIMeola and Bela Fleck, respectively?

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