WEATHER REPORT

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Weather Report was an influential jazz fusion band of the 1970s and 1980s, one of the bands that defined the genre. Their initial style was collectively improvised free jazz with a strong rhythmic pulse and Latin influences; moving into more funk-oriented rhythms. The sound also developed from an acoustic lineup to increasingly synthesised textures as keyboardist Joe Zawinul embraced successive generations of technology.

The band was founded in 1970 by Josef Zawinul (keyboards) and Wayne Shorter (saxophones) following their experiences in Miles Davis's pioneering electric band of the late 60s, although they had been friends for a decade before this. Zawinul and Shorter were the only permanent members: other musicians included bassists Miroslav Vitous, Alphonso Johnson, Jaco Pastorius and Victor Bailey; drummers Alphonse Mouzon, Eric Gravatt, Chester Thompson, Peter Erskine and Omar Hakim; and percussionists Airto Moreira, Alex Acuña and Manolo Badrena; with numerous other collaborators and guests.

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Thanks to EZ Money, snobb, dreadpirateroberts for the updates

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WEATHER REPORT Discography

WEATHER REPORT albums / top albums

WEATHER REPORT Weather Report album cover 4.17 | 27 ratings
Weather Report
Fusion 1971
WEATHER REPORT I Sing the Body Electric album cover 4.14 | 29 ratings
I Sing the Body Electric
Fusion 1972
WEATHER REPORT Sweetnighter album cover 4.01 | 24 ratings
Sweetnighter
Fusion 1973
WEATHER REPORT Mysterious Traveller album cover 3.92 | 27 ratings
Mysterious Traveller
Fusion 1974
WEATHER REPORT Tale Spinnin' album cover 4.15 | 18 ratings
Tale Spinnin'
Fusion 1975
WEATHER REPORT Black Market album cover 3.69 | 32 ratings
Black Market
Fusion 1976
WEATHER REPORT Heavy Weather album cover 3.84 | 38 ratings
Heavy Weather
Fusion 1977
WEATHER REPORT Mr. Gone album cover 2.62 | 17 ratings
Mr. Gone
Fusion 1978
WEATHER REPORT Weather Report (1982) album cover 3.14 | 13 ratings
Weather Report (1982)
Fusion 1982
WEATHER REPORT Procession album cover 3.81 | 11 ratings
Procession
Fusion 1983
WEATHER REPORT Domino Theory album cover 3.57 | 10 ratings
Domino Theory
Fusion 1984
WEATHER REPORT Sportin' Life album cover 2.96 | 9 ratings
Sportin' Life
Post-Fusion Contemporary 1985
WEATHER REPORT This Is This album cover 3.26 | 9 ratings
This Is This
Fusion 1986

WEATHER REPORT EPs & splits

WEATHER REPORT live albums

WEATHER REPORT Live in Tokyo album cover 4.11 | 10 ratings
Live in Tokyo
Fusion 1972
WEATHER REPORT Live In Japan 1978 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live In Japan 1978
Fusion 1978
WEATHER REPORT 8:30 album cover 3.58 | 15 ratings
8:30
Fusion 1979
WEATHER REPORT Night Passage album cover 2.90 | 13 ratings
Night Passage
Fusion 1980
WEATHER REPORT Live & Unreleased album cover 4.41 | 9 ratings
Live & Unreleased
Fusion 2002
WEATHER REPORT Live In Tokyo (1984) album cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Live In Tokyo (1984)
Fusion 2008
WEATHER REPORT Live in Berlin  1975 album cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Live in Berlin 1975
Fusion 2011
WEATHER REPORT Live in Offenbach 1978 album cover 4.29 | 3 ratings
Live in Offenbach 1978
Fusion 2011
WEATHER REPORT Live In Cologne 1983 album cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Live In Cologne 1983
Fusion 2011
WEATHER REPORT The Legendary Live Tapes 1978-1981 album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
The Legendary Live Tapes 1978-1981
Fusion 2015
WEATHER REPORT The Agora, Columbus, Ohio, October 17th 1972 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Agora, Columbus, Ohio, October 17th 1972
Fusion 2015
WEATHER REPORT Tokyo 1978 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Tokyo 1978
Fusion 2020
WEATHER REPORT Live In London album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Live In London
Fusion 2020
WEATHER REPORT Live At Shinjuku Koseinenkin Hall, Tokyo, 28 June 1978 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At Shinjuku Koseinenkin Hall, Tokyo, 28 June 1978
Fusion 2020
WEATHER REPORT Live At Fox Theater, Atlanta, GA, February 24, 1980 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At Fox Theater, Atlanta, GA, February 24, 1980
Fusion 2020

WEATHER REPORT demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

WEATHER REPORT re-issues & compilations

WEATHER REPORT Weather Report album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Weather Report
Fusion 1981
WEATHER REPORT Weather Report (cassette) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Weather Report (cassette)
Fusion 1982
WEATHER REPORT Die 70er Jahre album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Die 70er Jahre
Fusion 1983
WEATHER REPORT The Essence Of Weather Report album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Essence Of Weather Report
Fusion 1988
WEATHER REPORT Best Of, Volume 1 album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Best Of, Volume 1
Fusion 1990
WEATHER REPORT The Collection album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Collection
Fusion 1990
WEATHER REPORT The Collection (1993) album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
The Collection (1993)
Fusion 1993
WEATHER REPORT This Is Jazz album cover 3.75 | 2 ratings
This Is Jazz
Fusion 1996
WEATHER REPORT The Jaco Years album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Jaco Years
Fusion 1998
WEATHER REPORT Forecast: Tomorrow album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Forecast: Tomorrow
Fusion 2006
WEATHER REPORT Original Album Classics album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Original Album Classics
Fusion 2007
WEATHER REPORT The Best of Weather Report album cover 4.08 | 3 ratings
The Best of Weather Report
Fusion 2007
WEATHER REPORT The Columbia Albums 1971-1975 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Columbia Albums 1971-1975
Fusion 2012
WEATHER REPORT Complete Columbia Studio & Live Recordings album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Complete Columbia Studio & Live Recordings
Fusion 2017

WEATHER REPORT singles (0)

WEATHER REPORT movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
Live At Montreux 1976
Fusion 2007
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Live In Tokyo
Fusion 2007
.. Album Cover
4.50 | 2 ratings
Live in Germany 1971
Fusion 2010
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Live in Offenbach 1978
Fusion 2011

WEATHER REPORT Reviews

WEATHER REPORT Sportin' Life

Album · 1985 · Post-Fusion Contemporary
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DocB
Sportin' Life came as a breath of fresh air when it was released in 1985, with Weather Report sounding more spontaneous, and Wayne Shorter contributing more than he had on some recent releases. The album followed two of the best releases since 1977's Heavy Weather - 1983's Procession and 1984's Domino Theory. My personal Weather Report favourites are Mysterious Traveller, Tale Spinnin' and Black Market, from the era that was the band's and jazz fusion's high point, and Sportin' Life harkens back to that era. I quite like it. Here's what the trades have to say about the album's merits: (Editor's note) Unfortunately I had to remove the other two reviews that were attached to this original review. Here at JMA, we are only interested in original reviews, not reviews taken from other sources. Thank you for your understanding.

WEATHER REPORT Mysterious Traveller

Album · 1974 · Fusion
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dreadpirateroberts
On ‘Mysterious Traveller’ a shuffling of the line-up enables a step toward the funkier, slicker fusion the band would soon be playing, but a sound they hadn’t full embraced just yet, as not every piece turns away from the more ethereal music of earlier albums.

The first few Weather Report albums produced some of my favourite pieces in jazz fusion, but across this record I don’t find the funkier pieces as effective. This doesn’t mean I think ‘Mysterious Traveller’ irreversibly flawed either, but ‘Cucumber Slumber’ for instance, doesn’t seem to have enough variation to hold my interest the whole way through. New bassist Alphonso Johnson certainly adds some pep to the piece, but I find the group’s approach to funk much more satisfying on the exciting ‘Nubian Sundance’ which also incorporates some African elements, mixed in with Zawinul’s sonic layering. In fact, he trots out a fair range of sounds on the song, seeming to have a great time with Wilburn’s urgent beat to ride atop of.

While some of Zawinul’s explorations on the keys don’t exactly fall down, something like the moody ‘Scarlet Woman’ is fascinating to me – because I can’t decide whether I enjoy it or find my ears getting ‘zapped’ every time he and Shorter sync up. While you’ll hear less of Shorter on this album than on prior releases, he still gets time for a nice solo on the title track, whereas elsewhere, on the more ambient pieces, he’s much more supportive, as if considering the effect of every note.

‘Jungle Book’ is quite a gentle closer, but one less sombre than the surprising ‘American Tango,’ which is still one of my favourite Weather Report pieces. Vitous’ only credit on the album, this piece is something of a stumbling ballad, with what should be jarring keys from Zawinul – but somehow their spacey immediacy gives the song something extra, even with what’s almost an awkward, lumbering and brief detour in there just before the long fade, with Shorter’s soprano tugging at the heart.

A Top Fifty Billboard release, this album would be something of a gateway between their more commercially successful period and the ‘In a Silent Way/Bitches Brew’ influenced output of their first three albums. Still one of my favourites of theirs, and probably not one that should be overlooked due to its transitional aspects.

WEATHER REPORT Black Market

Album · 1976 · Fusion
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Warthur
A consistently catchy album of comparatively accessible fusion from Weather Report, Black Market gets a lot of props for being Jaco Pastorius' first album with the group, though in actuality he only appears on two tracks. Granted, one of them is his own Barbary Coast, but I the fact that this empty technical showboating made it onto the album as being a fairly clear symptom of the weakness of the songwriting this time around. Personally, I don't consider Black Market to be the unalloyed classic it's often made out to be - not only are the band playing a style of fusion which by this point in the 1970s had become fairly safe and mainstream, they don't even do anything particularly novel or interesting with it.

WEATHER REPORT Mysterious Traveller

Album · 1974 · Fusion
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Warthur
Although it's highly praised in fusion circles, I personally don't find Weather Report's Mysterious Traveller to be quite the classic it's made out to be. It isn't helped by the fact that it's a transitional album, in which founder member Miroslav Vitous bows out to make way for new bassist Alphonso Johnson, and in which the band begin to experiment with African-inspired rhythms. The most successful track is probably Nubian Sundance, which is genuinely exciting and engaging, but the rest of the album is extremely laid back and, at points, seems to back away from fusion entirely and edge towards more traditional jazz forms. The jazz lover in me wonders why the band can't just play straight jazz without adding unnecessary fusion frills to the pure-jazz tracks, whilst the fusion lover in me finds the album hard to focus on and directionless.

WEATHER REPORT Sweetnighter

Album · 1973 · Fusion
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Warthur
Sweetnighter is a strong fusion album from Weather Report which offers a notable improvement over its predecessor, I Sing the Body Electric. It's founder member Miroslav Vitous' last album with the group, and his bass playing is a particular highlight, laying down a funk-powered foundation over which the rest of the instrumentalists strut their stuff in dynamite fashion. This approach is particularly effective in the two longer songs on the album, 125th Street Congress and Boogie Woogie Waltz, which are surely highlight's of the group's repertoire. You can still perceive the influence of Miles Davis (who I think of as the musical "grandfather" of this band, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Return to Forever, and other groups founded by key members of the In a Silent Way/Bitches Brew sessions), but by this point Weather Report are pulling full steam ahead into their own distinctive musical terrain, the compromise between cutting-edge fusion and commercial reach that would characterise their mid-70s work becoming visible.

WEATHER REPORT Movies Reviews

WEATHER REPORT Live in Germany 1971

Movie · 2010 · Fusion
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Sean Trane
Well if the world still has to find some live recording from the very first studio all-star line-up (not likely, though), at least we've got now something very close to and we can even see the quintet at work with this just-as-famous version in the form of a German TV show called the Beat Club. With only Airto Moreira gone, replaced by Brazilian countryman Um Romao, the other four being Vitous, Shorter, Mouzon and Zawinul, Weather Report embarked on this TV show adventure not knowing that Alphonse Mouzon would leave the band in a while.

As you'd expect this broadcast consisted mainly of tracks from the debut album, but some are fairly different as WR always made improvisation their force. So you'll recognize 'Umbrellas generic structure, but drafted fairly differently, not just because of Romao's constant change of percussions instruments - he's one of the visual focus of the group, who otherwise remains fairly static and even blows a flute (and later some whistles) for a short while. One of the big difference between the studio album and this broadcast is that Miroslav has taken up the electric bass (his contrabass is still very present but mainly played with a bow), thus allowing even more energy to invade the quintet's shared space. The group's steaming-hot improvised fusion is simply awesome and flows naturally from your speakers like a river of fresh lave spewing out from your volcanic woofers.

Clearly the gravitational centre of the band is Zawinul's Rhodes, but it is clear that it is the group's tightness its main force. Morning Lake is much needed breathing space, starting out slowly with Shorter's sax signalling the dawn for Romao's birdsongs. Just past that Dom pulls an Brazilian berimbau . Drummer Alphonse sings funkilly (rather well, too) a rare sung track in the closing medley, but it's will veer into the Dr Honoris Causa - later on the Body Electric album.

A while later, Mouzon would leave the band and be replaced by drummer Erik Gravatt and this line-up would go on to record Body Electric and the Tokyo concert (released in 77, but part of it in the ISTBE album) and in the process become the definitive line-up of the Vitous- era Weather Report But for now, this German TV broadcast is an inestimable witness of the group's almost original line-up, and is just as essential as their debut album, the Tokyo concert or Body Electric.Too bad it's relatively short, though. Run for this baby...

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