24 Jan 2015

A Centenary of Sun Ra

From RNZ Music, 4:00 pm on 24 January 2015

Sun Ra Orchestra of Spheres in front of Sun Ra s house in Philadelphia with Arkestra s Marshall Allen and Fred Allen L to R Andy Wright Fred Allen Marshall Allen Daniel Beban and Nell Thomas

Sun Ra and Orchestra of Spheres in front of Sun Ra's house in Philadelphia with Arkestra's Marshall Allen and Fred Allen (L-to-R Andy Wright, Fred Allen, Marshall Allen, Daniel Beban and Nell Thomas)

A look at the career of one the 20th century's great composers, band leaders and eccentrics, Sun Ra.

A mysterious and elusive figure, for most of his life Sun Ra constructed a web of myths and legends that stretch from ancient Egypt to outer space.

An early pioneer of electronic keyboards and a musician driven by the search for new sounds and ways of constructing music, Sun Ra formed a big band, the Arkestra in the 50s.

The band has survived for over six decades, even outliving its founding father, and has been responsible for some of the most out-there music ever heard on planet earth.

Orchestra of Spheres' Daniel Beban takes us for a ride through the music of Sun Ra.

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