Jazz by Sun Ra

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Jazz By Sun Ra
Original Transition pressing, 1957
Studio album by Sun Ra and his Arkestra
Released 1957
Recorded Universal Recording Studio
July 12, 1956
Genre Jazz
Label Transition
Producer Tom Wilson
Sun Ra and his Arkestra chronology
Jazz By Sun Ra
Super-Sonic Jazz
(1956)Super-Sonic Jazz1956
reissue cover
Delmark reissue 1967, retitled Sun Song
Delmark reissue 1967, retitled Sun Song
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4/5 stars[1]
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide4/5 stars[2]

Jazz By Sun Ra (later titled Sun Song) is the debut album to be released by Sun Ra.[3] The record label for the first pressing says "07-12-56", presumably when it was recorded.[4] The LP originally appeared on Tom Wilson's short-lived Transition Records. In the mid-1960s it was purchased (along with much of the Transition catalog) by Delmark Records owner Bob Koester, finally being reissued in 1967.

When originally released, it came with an extensive booklet featuring words and photos of Sun Ra and his Arkestra. The LP featured original compositions by Sun Ra along with one by Arkestral bassist Richard Evans. Another composition by Arkestra member Julian Priester has been included in reissues from the session, and additional unreleased tracks (all Ra originals) are known to survive. The single non-Arkestral composition was Possession, by Harry Revel, which had been written for Les Baxter's album Perfume Set to Music; Possession was arranged for the Arkestra by the Texan pianist and composer Prince Shell.

Earlier home recordings by Ra, including one dating from 1948 or 1949, were released with tracks from 1973 on the album Deep Purple.

Track listing[edit]

12" vinyl version[edit]

Side A

  1. "Brainville" (Sun Ra) 4:29
  2. "Call for all Demons" (Sun Ra) 4:30
  3. "Transition" (Sun Ra) 3:40
  4. "Possession" (Harry Revel) 5:00
  5. "Street Named Hell" (Sun Ra) 3:55

Side B

  1. "Lullaby for Realville" (Richard Evans) 4:40
  2. "Future" (Sun Ra) 3:15
  3. "New Horizons" (Sun Ra) 3:05
  4. "Fall off the Log" (Sun Ra) 4:00
  5. "Sun Song" (Sun Ra) 3:40

When reissued on Compact Disc in 1991, Swing A Little Taste was added. This was originally released on the Transition sampler Jazz in Transition alongside tracks by artists such as Cecil Taylor, Donald Byrd and John Coltrane;

CD version[edit]

  1. "Brainville" (Sun Ra) 4:29
  2. "Call for all Demons" (Sun Ra) 4:30
  3. "Transition" (Sun Ra) 3:40
  4. "Possession" (Harry Revel) 5:00
  5. "Street Named Hell" (Sun Ra) 3:55
  6. "Lullaby for Realville" (Richard Evans) 4:40
  7. "Future" (Sun Ra) 3:15
  8. "Swing a Little Taste" (Sun Ra) 4:25
  9. "New Horizons" (Sun Ra) 3:05
  10. "Fall off the Log" (Sun Ra) 4:00
  11. "Sun Song" (Sun Ra) 3:40

Musicians [5][edit]

Recorded Universal Recording, Chicago, July 12, 1956


  • Transition TRLP J-10 (1957)
  • Delmark DL-411 (1967)
  • Sonet SLP23 (Sweden)
  • Delmark DD-411 (1991, CD)

External sources[edit]


  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Swenson, J., ed. (1985). The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide. USA: Random House/Rolling Stone. p. 186. ISBN 0-394-72643-X. 
  3. ^ Sun Ra Discography Items 1-25
  4. ^ Sun Ra - Jazz By Sun Ra
  5. ^ Reissue sleeve notes, Delmark