The "Mahavishnu Orchestra" was a jazz-rock fusion group that debuted in 1970 and dissolved in 1976, only to reunite briefly from 1984 to 1986.
In its first version, the band was led by "Mahavishnu" John McLaughlin on acoustic and electric guitars, with members Billy Cobham on drums, Rick Laird on electric and acoustic bass, Jan Hammer on electric and acoustic piano, and Jerry Goodman on violin. The group is best known for their two most popular albums: ''The Inner Mounting Flame'' (1971) and ''Birds of Fire'' (1973).
This group was considered an important pioneer in the jazz fusion movement. McLaughlin and Cobham met while performing and recording with Miles Davis. McLaughlin was also influenced in his conception of the band by his studies with Indian guru Sri Chinmoy, who encouraged him to take the name "Mahavishnu."
McLaughlin had particular ideas for the instrumentation of the group, in keeping with his highly original concept of genre-blending in composition. He particularly wanted a violinist. As the group evolved, McLaughlin adopted what became his trademark double-neck guitar (six-string and twelve-string), and Hammer added a Moog synthesizer, which enable...
|years active||1970–1976, 1984–1986|
|music genre||jazz fusion|
|current members||John McLaughlin (musician)|
|past members|| Billy Cobham|
Narada Michael Walden