Let Freedom Ring

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Let Freedom Ring
Let Freedom Ring cover.jpg
Studio album by Jackie McLean
Released May 1963[1]
Recorded March 19, 1962
Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs
Genre Jazz
Length 38:16
Label Blue Note
BST 84106
Producer Alfred Lion
Jackie McLean chronology
A Fickle Sonance
(1961)A Fickle Sonance1961
Let Freedom Ring
Tippin' the Scales
(1962)Tippin' the Scales1962

Let Freedom Ring is an album by jazz saxophonist Jackie McLean, recorded in 1962 and released on the Blue Note label.[2]

McLean wrote three of the four compositions. "Melody for Melonae" is dedicated to his daughter (as was an earlier composition, "Little Melonae"), and appeared as "Melanie" on Matador, a later recording that he made with Kenny Dorham. The slower-tempo performance on Let Freedom Ring is notable as being the first time that McLean used "provocative upper-register screams".[3] "Rene" and "Omega" are both blues-related pieces, the former with a standard twelve-bar structure and harmonies, the latter more abstract and modal. The one non-McLean track is Bud Powell's ballad, "I'll Keep Loving You".


The Allmusic review by Steve Huey awarded the album 5 stars and stated: "The success of Let Freedom Ring paved the way for a bumper crop of other modernist innovators to join the Blue Note roster and, artistically, it still stands with One Step Beyond as McLean's greatest work."[4] The Penguin Guide to Jazz gives Let Freedom Ring four out of four stars, and includes the album in a selected "Core Collection".[5]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 5/5 stars[4]
Penguin Guide to Jazz 4/4 stars[5]
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide 5/5 stars[6]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Melody for Melonae" (McLean) - 13:24
  2. "I'll Keep Loving You" (Powell) - 6:18
  3. "Rene" (McLean) - 10:03
  4. "Omega" (McLean) - 8:31



  1. ^ Billboard May 18, 1963
  2. ^ Jackie McLean discography, accessed January 13, 2013.
  3. ^ Bob Blumenthal's liner notes to the 2003 RVG edition.
  4. ^ a b Huey, S. Allmusic review, accessed January 13, 2013.
  5. ^ a b Cook, Richard; Brian Morton (2008) [1992]. The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings. The Penguin Guide to Jazz (9th ed.). New York: Penguin. pp. 979–980. ISBN 978-0-14-103401-0. 
  6. ^ Swenson, J. (Editor) (1985). The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide. USA: Random House/Rolling Stone. p. 136. ISBN 0-394-72643-X.