We covered David Rose long ago, Zbiggy Seifert more recently, Zippy Reinhardt less recently, and here we are now with Lockwood. There is also the slightly lesser known French violinist Michel Ripoche who was covered extensively in the prognotfrog days of the paleozoic.
When I was desperate to hear Lockwood's New World again recently (to restore the masterpieces to my fixed ipod) I saw to my dismay there was an item in his oeuvre outstanding from 1978, namely this one he made in collaboration with the great Francois Cahen (who I just read passed away in 2011). Everyone knows with whom he played, right?
Consider the dreamy atmospherics of Reves de Musique:
And then consider the fact that it's representative of the entirety of this wonderful LP filled with long and well-thought-out tracks and advanced composition.
For ages my favourite piece from Lockwood has been La manufacture du sucre englouti:
It's so beautiful it's like magic. With (co-composer) Gordon Beck on piano, starting off by channeling Bill Evans obviously but moving on to create an amazing amalgam of classical Ravel and the tenderest jazz piano. Those were the days, right? (I'm not sure wherefrom the curious title derives, it means The manufacture of submerged sugar).
I didn't include the 1981 Fusion which is good but well-distributed online, but I did the next year's Fasten Seatbelts, which despite a couple of tracks is mostly disappointing. Having said that, listen to his ingenious musical exploration of the largest blood vessel, the Aorta:
Btw reviewing Lockwood reminded me of the Catherine - Escoude - Lockwood trio album from here. For those with better memories than myself, Didier also appeared (with Escoude) on the amazing String Summit record that featured Wolfgang Dauner. And I should mention his brother the keyboardist Francis who also made some great fusion records back in the day, including Debbi.
So who's the best of the fusion violinists? The overpopular Jean-Luc Ponty, David Rose, Reinhardt, Zbiggy Seifert, Michel Ripoche, or our current feature? In all honesty the best single album is Seifert's Passion, but as a whole, Lockwood had the most amazing work, especially when you listen to Surya and the way it flows together so beautifully from start to finish.