Elton Dean

Elton Dean, born 28 October 1945 and died 8 February 2006. He was an English jazz musician. He played alto saxophone (a variant of soprano) and saxello (a variation of the soprano) and sometimes keyboard. Dean was born in Nottingham, England. He was a member, 1966-1967, of Bluesology, which was led by Long John Baldry. Reginald Dwight was the band’s pianist. He then combined Dean and Baldry’s names to create his stage name, Elton John. Dean’s reputation was established as a member the Keith Tippett Sextet, 1968-1970, and Soft Machine 1969-1972. Just Us was his first group. It was formed shortly before he left Soft Machine. He led a nine-piece group called Ninesense from 1975 to 1978, performing at the Bracknell Jam Festival and other similar events. Since then, his own bands, often quintets or quartets, have tended to be free jazz, and have used little or no pre-composed material. He also continued his work with other composition-based groups, like guitarist Phil Miller’s In Cahoots and drummer Pip Pyle’s Equipe Out. Dean, John Marshall, guitarist Allan Holdsworth, and Hugh Hopper were all Soft Machine ex-members in 2002. They toured and recorded as Soft Works. They toured and recorded under the name Soft Machine Legacy with John Etheridge (another former Soft Machine member), replacing Holdsworth. He played some of the original Soft Machine repertoire, as well as some new pieces. Three albums featuring Dean were released: Live In Zaandam (CD), rec. 2005/05/10, New Morning – The Paris Concert (DVD), rec. 2005/12/12), and the studio album Soft Machine Legacy CD, 2006. 2005). Dean’s last musical collaborations included Soft Bounds, Hugh Hopper’s quartet, Sophia Domancich, Simon Goubert, and Alex Maguire’s project Psychic Warrior. Also, Dean was a member of the Belgian rock-jazz band The Wrong Object. Dean’s playing style can be equally tonal and atonal. His forays into Rock with Soft Machine featured a pioneering use extreme amplification (especially the live period between albums Fourth and Fifth). Wikipedia

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