Free Lancing

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Free Lancing
Free Lancing.jpg
Studio album by James Blood Ulmer
Released 1981
Recorded 1981
Genre Jazz
Label Columbia
Producer Jim Fishel, Roger Trilling & James "Blood" Ulmer
James Blood Ulmer chronology
Are You Glad to Be in America?
(1980)Are You Glad to Be in America?1980
Free Lancing
Black Rock
(1982)Black Rock1982

Free Lancing is an album by American guitarist James Blood Ulmer recorded in 1981 and released on the Columbia label.[1] It was Ulmer's first of three albums recorded for a major label.


The Allmusic review by Brian Olewnick awarded the album 4 stars, and states, "it's Ulmer's stinging guitar lines — rough-hewn, corrosive, and scrabbling — throughout this recording that make it one of his finest".[2]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[2]
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide 4/5 stars[3]

Trouser Press described both Free Lancing and the subsequent Black Rock as "technical masterpieces, making up in precision what they lack in emotion (as compared to Are You Glad to Be in America?). Working to expand his audience, Ulmer concentrates more on electric guitar flash, and actual melodies can be discerned from the improvised song structures (improvisation being one of the keys to harmolodics)."[4]

Track listing[edit]

All compositions by James Blood Ulmer
  1. "Timeless" - 4:22
  2. "Pleasure Control" - 5:00
  3. "Night Lover" - 5:22
  4. "Where Did All the Girls Come From?" - 4:38
  5. "High Time" - 4:00
  6. "Hijack" -
  7. "Free Lancing" - 4:42
  8. "Stand Up to Yourself" - 4:37
  9. "Rush Hour" - 5:32
  10. "Happy Time" - 5:11



  1. ^ James "Blood" Ulmer discography accessed July 9, 2010
  2. ^ a b Olewnick, B. Allmusic Review accessed July 9, 2010
  3. ^ Swenson, J. (Editor) (1985). The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide. USA: Random House/Rolling Stone. p. 197. ISBN 0-394-72643-X. 
  4. ^ Margasak, Peter; Graham Flashner (2007). "James Blood Ulmer". Trouser Press. Trouser Press LLC. Retrieved July 28, 2010.