The 1970s were a decade of discovery for Joe Henderson, a time to set aside the post-bop instrumentations and repertoire he was identified with and branch out into other realms. One of the most successful and challenging of these efforts that the Milestone label documented was the present four-part improvisation on the basic themes of "Fire," "Air," "Water," and "Earth." Assisting the tenor saxophonist was a group of sympathetic explorers - Alice Coltrane on piano and harp, violin original Michael White, bass giant Charlie Haden, and the multi-talented percussionist Kenneth Nash.
Latin American, Indian, and Native American strains enter the mix as Henderson applies the heat and mercurial invention of his more conventional work to these open-ended settings. While the magic is enhanced with overdubbing in spots, the true magic of The Elements emanates from the musicians' collective genius at listening and responding to each other. 180-gram vinyl pressed at QRP from lacquers cut by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio and housed in a single-pocket old-school style tip-on jacket.
Joe Henderson, tenor saxophone & flute
Alice Coltrane, piano, harp
Michael White, violin
Kenneth Nash, flute, congas, bells & gong
Charlie Haden, bass
Baba Daru Oshun, tabla & percussion
Leon Ndugu Chancler, drums