About this event
Larry Coryell was born 2 April, 1943 in Galveston, Texas. As a child he studied and played piano, switching to guitar (acoustic, and then electric) in his teens. After studying journalism at the University of Washington, he moved to New York City in 1965, where he played behind guitarist Gabor Szabo in drummer Chico Hamilton’s jazz quintet. However, by 1966, he had replaced Szabo and later that same year went on to record his vinyl debut with Hamilton’s band. Also in 1966 he co-founded an early jazz-rock band, the Free Spirits, with whom he recorded one album, 1966’s rare, Free Spirit: Out Of Sight And Sound. Soon after his stint with the Free Spirits he joined vibra-harpist Gary Burton’s band, recording with him three seminal albums, all of which are now long out of print. In 1969 he recorded Memphis Underground with flautist Herbie Mann whose band, at that time, included Roy Ayers and the influential free-jazz guitarist Sonny Sharrock. Also in 1969, before recording his first solo LP, he toured Europe and the U.S. with ex-Cream bassist Jack Bruce, ex-Jimi Hendrix Experience drummer Mitch Mitchell, as well as keyboardist and future Coryell side-man Mike Mandel.