Universal Congress Of

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Universal Congress Of
OriginLos Angeles, California, U.S.
GenresPunk jazz
Years active1986–present
LabelsSST, Enemy, Hazelwood
MembersJoe Baiza
Steve Gaeta
Paul Lines
Steve Moss
Past membersJacob Cohn
Rick Cox
Mike Demers
Bob Fitzer
A.P. Gonzalez
Ralph Gorodetsky
Lynn Johnston
Jason Kahn
Paul Uriaz

Universal Congress Of are an American jazz ensemble from Los Angeles, formed in 1986.


The project was started by Joe Baiza and continued to develop his own fusion of free jazz and punk rock after his previous band, Saccharine Trust, went on hiatus. Congress' approach to free jazz has earned them comparisons to Ornette Coleman[1] and James Blood Ulmer,[1][2] while the group themselves have pointed to Albert Ayler as a primary source of inspiration.[3] The band's name was chosen "to reflect the open-ended nature of its music."[4]

The original line-up consisted of Baiza, Ralph Gorodetsky (bass), Jason Kahn (drums), Steve Moss (saxophone).[4] Moss had played in an earlier incarnation of Baiza's previous band, Saccharine Trust.[4]


In an issue of Mountain Bike, bassist Tim Commerford of Rage Against the Machine spoke of his admiration of the band's funky and jazz tinged style.[5]


Studio albums
Live albums


  1. ^ a b Dougan, John. "Universal Congress Of: Biography by John Dougan". AllMusic. Retrieved November 16, 2019.
  2. ^ Margasak, Peter (February 11, 1993). "Universal Congress Of The Eleventh-hour Shine-On (Enemy)". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 16, 2019.
  3. ^ Sharp, Charles Michael (2008). Improvisation, Identity and Tradition: Experimental Music Communities in Los Angeles. p. 224. ISBN 978-1-109-12377-7. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  4. ^ a b c Snowden, Don (July 21, 1989). "Sessions of the Universal Congress Of: Unifying Styles". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 13, 2019.
  5. ^ Vontz, Andrew (May 2006). "Fresh Tracks". Mountain Bike. Rodale, Inc.: 14. Retrieved October 8, 2012.

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