Get this crazy baby off my head!


Nucleus with Leon Thomas

Nucleus with Leon Thomas - Live At Montreux 20.6.70 - 2008 - Naughty Dog

Great recording of the late Leon Thomas and Nucleus/Ian Carr's Nucleus at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1970. It was originally an Austrian radio broadcast and sound quality is better than average for an unof. recording over 40 years old. Formed in 1969 by the late trumpeter and flugelhornist Ian Carr, Nucleus aka Ian Carr's Nucleus was among the very first groups to fuse rock and jazz from the jazz perspective. The band was regarded as one of the most technically brilliant jazz rock/fusion bands in the world. Ian had played for ten years, first in the EmCee Five (which included the brilliant guitarist, John McLaughlin) and then in the Rendell-Carr Group, which released five albums prior to 1969. Search this blog for Ian Carr/Nucleus releases, and try and listen to Leon Thomas' "Live in Berlin with Oliver Nelson" album


The Creator Has A Master Plan - Leon Thomas, Pharoah Sanders 19:18
Damn Nam (Ain't Going To Viet Nam) - Leon Thomas 5:48
One - Leon Thomas 6:22
One Continued - Leon Thomas 2:11
Chains Of Love - Ahmet Nugetre, Harry VanWalls 8:50
Journey - Leon Thomas 12:07


Leon Thomas (voc) RIP
Ian Carr (tp, flh) RIP
Karl Jenkins (oboe, p)
Brian Smith (ss, fl, ts)
Chris Spedding (g)
Jeff Clyne (b) RIP
John Marshall (d)


Amos Leon Thomas Jr (October 4, 1937 – May 8, 1999) was an American avant garde jazz singer from East St. Louis, Illinois. Thomas studied music at Tennessee State University. In the 1960s he was a vocalist for Count Basie and others. In 1969, he released his first solo album for the prestigious Flying Dutchman label. However he made an earlier album which is still unreleased even now. He was largely forgotten until a resurgence of interest in soul jazz. Several of his tracks have been sampled in hip-hop and downtempo records. He changed his name to Leone in 1974 because of an interest he had in numerology at the time. He did not legally change his name and he reverted back to Leon shortly thereafter. Thomas is best known for his work with Pharoah Sanders, particularly the 1969 song "The Creator Has a Master Plan" from Sanders' Karma album. Thomas's most distinctive device was that he often broke out into yodeling in the middle of a vocal. This style has influenced singers James Moody and Tim Buckley, among others. He said in an interview that he developed this style after he fell and broke his teeth before an important show. Thomas toured and recorded as a member of the band Santana in 1973. Thomas died of heart failure on May 8, 1999.


Ian Carr (21 April 1933 – 25 February 2009) was a Scottish jazz musician, composer, writer, and educator. Carr was born in Dumfries, Scotland, the elder brother of Mike Carr. From 1952 to 1956, he went to King's College, now Newcastle University, where he read English Literature, followed by a diploma in education. At the age of seventeen Carr started to teach himself trumpet. After university he joined his brother in a Newcastle band, the EmCee Five, from 1960 to 1962, before moving to London, where he became co-leader with Don Rendell of the Rendell–Carr quintet (1963–1969). In its six years, the group (including pianist Michael Garrick, bassist Dave Green, and drummer Trevor Tomkins) made five albums for EMI – all of which have been re-issued – and performed internationally. After leaving the quintet, Carr went on to form the ground-breaking jazz-rock band Nucleus. This led to the release of twelve albums (some under the band's name, some under Carr's), and a successful international career. In their first year they won first prize at the Montreux Jazz Festival, released their first album (Elastic Rock), and performed at both the Newport Jazz Festival and the Village Gate jazz club. He also played with the United Jazz and Rock Ensemble since 1975. Carr worked as a session musician in non-jazz contexts, with Nico, No-Man, Faultline, and others. He also doubled up on flugelhorn. Apart from writing a regular column for the BBC Music Magazine, Carr wrote biographies of the jazz musicians Keith Jarrett and Miles Davis. He was also the co-author of the reference work The Rough Guide to Jazz which has passed through four editions from 1994 (originally Jazz, The Essential Companion, 1988). In addition he contributed sleeve notes for the albums of other musicians (e.g. Indo-Jazz Fusions by Joe Harriott and John Mayer). In 1987, he was appointed associate professor at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, where he taught composition and performance, especially improvisation and was founder of the jazz workshop at the Interchange arts scheme, where pianist Julian Joseph, amongst others, was one of his students.


Nucleus began its long jazz-rock journey in 1969, when it was originally formed by trumpeter Ian Carr. They attracted a following after a successful performance at the Montreux International Festival in 1970, which led to the critical success of albums Elastic Rock and We'll Talk About It Later. The other members consisted of saxophonist Karl Jenkins, drummer John Marshall, and guitarist Chris Spedding. Spedding split after the first two albums, but the rest of the lineup lasted until 1972, when Jenkins and Marshall both left to join Soft Machine. Belladonna was the first album with only Carr, and although he enlisted the help of guitarist Allan Holdsworth, the band eventually became a solo venture for his music. They finally broke up in the mid-'80s after several Carr-only albums. © Bradley Torreano, allmusic.com


Nucleus were a pioneering jazz-rock band from Britain who continued in different forms from 1969 to 1985. In their first year they won first prize at the Montreux Jazz Festival, released the album Elastic Rock, an essential creation in the crystallization of a new musical expression, Jazz fusion, and performed both at the Newport Jazz Festival and the Village Gate jazz club. They were led by Ian Carr, who had been in the Rendell-Carr Quintet during the mid and late 1960s, and was a respected figure in British jazz for more than 40 years. Their jazz-based music evolved from an early sound incorporating elements of progressive and psychedelic rock towards a funkier sound in the mid and late 1970s. Nucleus' first lineup was leader and trumpeter Ian Carr, keyboardist/oboist Karl Jenkins, saxophonist/flautist Brian Smith, guitarist Chris Spedding, bassist Jeff Clyne and drummer John Marshall. By their third album, the band had expanded to include trumpeters Kenny Wheeler and Harry Beckett, saxophonist Tony Roberts, bassist Ron Mathewson, percussionist Chris Karan and Keith Winter on VCS3 synthesizer. Dave MacRae joined soon after for several albums.Over the years the band has seen many members: Trumpet & flugelhorn: Ian Carr, Kenny Wheeler, Harry Beckett, , Chris Batchelor: Tenor sax, soprano sax, flute: Brian Smith, Bob Bertles, Phil Todd, Tim Whitehead: Clarinet, bass clarinet, tenor sax: Tony Roberts, Tony Coe: Baritone sax, oboe, piano, electric piano: Karl Jenkins: Piano and electric piano: Dave MacRae, Gordon Beck, Geoff Castle: Guitar: Chris Spedding, Allan Holdsworth, Jocelyn Pitchen, Ray Russell, Ken Shaw, Mark Wood: Bass guitar: Jeff Clyne, Ron Mathewson, Roy Babbington, Roger Sutton, Billy Kristian, Mo Foster, Dill Katz, Rob Statham Drums: John Marshall, Clive Thacker, Tony Levin, Bryan Spring, Roger Sellers Percussion: Chris Karan, Trevor Tomkins, Aureo de Souza, Richard Burgess, Chris Fletcher Synthesizer: Keith Winter, Paddy Kingsland, Geoff Castle, Neil Ardley Vocals: Norma Winstone, Joy Yates (Mrs. Dave MacRae), Kieran White Organ: John Taylor. In August 2005, a special one-off reincarnation of Nucleus, with old and new members, performed at London's Cargo venue, to an enthusiastic reception. This was followed on 30 March 2007 by a Nucleus Revisited concert at London's Pizza Express Jazz Club as part of a series of concerts to mark Jazzwise magazine's 10th anniversary. Nucleus Revisited featured, amongst others, Nucleus stalwarts, Geoff Castle, Mark Wood and Tim Whitehead and on trumpet, as at the 2005 Cargo concert, Chris Batchelor. Although Ian Carr did not play due to ill health, he was present at the concert and received a standing ovation from the ecstatic audience. Nucleus Revisited also appeared at Ronnie Scott's club in London on 4 August 2009 as part of their two week long Brit Jazz Fest. The double billing with Michael Garrick's Quartet drew an appreciative packed house.


A.O.O.F.C said...


p/w if required is


Eric said...

Huh, Wasn't aware Leon Thomas was involved with Nucleus.
Quite interesting Paul.
Nice up.

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi,Eric. I only found out recently that Leon Thomas sang with Nucleus. Unusual album, but good. Leon Thomas sings a great version of Horace Silver's "Song For My Father" on his "Spirits Known & Unknown" album, although I prefer Silver's original album version. Hope you're ok, Eric. Will talk soon....P

Eric said...

I'm well Paul, thanks. Hope the same for you.
And we know the Horace Silver connection with a certain Dan that is Steely :D

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi,Eric. Your health is your wealth. A separate blog could be devoted to that overhyped connection! I know Don's releasing "Kwack Zany" shortly. I know because I invented it, but will we ever see another album of the chalybs daniel
species? (lol)! ttu soon, Eric....P

John said...

Any chance you could re-up this? Thanks for such a cool blog.

A.O.O.F.C said...

Thanks John. I no longer have original album to re-up. Sorry Maybe someone reading this could help? TY...Paul


Please Re Up Many thanks

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi LYSERGICFUNK. Check my comments box for a new link, & ty!...Paul


Hi Paul, Many many Thanks

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi Ly. TY for returning & yw. Please stay in touch...Paul