Bubbha Thomas & The Lightmen – Creative Music: The Complete Works
Bubbha Thomas – Revolutionary, spiritual jazz bandleader, drummer, and activist from Houston.
This is the definitive box set of his four classic albums with his Lightmen band, each mastered from the original tapes, expanded with bonus tracks and alternate mixes.
Bubbha Thomas had toured America with R&B revues, served as a session musician for Peacock and Back Beat Records, and played straight ahead jazz with legends before the political and social upheaval of the late 1960s led him to a path first charted by Coltrane. His first set of self-issued albums predated the deep-set, maverick jazz issued by the likes of Tribe and Strata East and were a harbinger of best of the 1970s jazz underground. Over the course of the decade, he contributed to a collective voice of resistance to the musical and cultural status quo that is just beginning to be understood.
Each album contains 2LPs and comes with a download card for WAV files, and footage of live performances included. Booklet detailing Thomas and his band’s remarkable trajectory also included in the set. Album details below.
Free As You Wanna Be predates the deep-set, maverick jazz issued by the likes of Tribe and Strata East and is a harbinger of best of the 1970s jazz underground, a collective voice of resistance to the musical and cultural status quo. Presented in both stereo and previously unissued mono mixes. (NA5155 – 14 tracks)
Fancy Pants is Thomas’s second LP with his Lightmen band and is a more introspective, meditative affair; it stands alongside the best of the early 1970s jazz underground, from Phil Cohran to Phil Ranelin to Sun Ra. Presented in both stereo and previously unissued, extended mono mixes. (NA 5156 – 16 tracks)
The Lightmen Plus One – Energy Control Center, Thomas’s third LP with his Lightmen band is his masterpiece: deep-set, maverick jazz that smolders in the embers of a cultural revolution. This is a highpoint amongst the best of the 1970s, and this version of the album contains second disc with bonus tracks: unreleased alternate takes, including two versions of the Spiritual Jazz classic “All Praises To Allah,” and the two singles Thomas produced for poet and activist Thomas Meloncon. (NA 5157)
Side A – Wench (4:00), Blues For Curtis (3:09), Cold Bair (5:02), Energy Control Center (5:03). Side B – Leo (6:39), Jupiter’s Child (7:10), The Phantom (2:23); Side C – Leo (Alt) (7:17), All Praises To Allah (Alt) (9:46), Cold Bair (Alt) (5:13); Side D – The Phantom (Alt) (2:31), All Praises to Allah (Single Version) (6:25), Me (2:54); Thomas Meloncon – Ain’t Gonna Wait Too Long (2:51), Bullets Of A Gun (3:15), Waiting On Your Mind (2:38), 400 Years (2:40).
Country Fried Chicken, Thomas’s fourth LP with his Lightmen band and the last of his classic period, is his most accessible, a mixture of funk and spiritual jazz. This version of the album contains a second disc with bonus tracks: alternate, synth-lead mixes of songs from his first two LPs as well as rare and unreleased disco and boogie tracks. (NA 5158)
Side A – Country Fried Chicken (6:12), All In Love Is Fair (5:09), Survival Song (6:51); Side B – Herbs (Of Life) (4:56), Famous Last Words (5:44), Sweet Ray (10:36); Side C – Country Fried Chicken (Youthful Musicians Summer Program) (3:50), Luke 23:32 (Synth Version) (3:06), Ujimma (Synth Version) (3:26), Ashie (Synth Version) (2:51); Side D – Looking Back At Summer (feat. John Henderson) (3:41), Boogie Down (Pt. 1) (3:02), Boogie Down (Pt. 2) (3:59), Let Me Play The Music (4:08)
CD set does not come in OBI. Each CD is individually shrink-wrapped.