Personnel: John McLaughlin (acoustic guitar); Bjarne Roup (guitar); Lillian Toernqvist (harp); Mahalakshmi (tamboura); Lakshminarayana Shankar, Jean-Luc Ponty, Jerry Goodman (violin); David Liebman (flute); Niels Eje (oboe); Jesper Thilo, Bent Jaedig, Per Carsten, Uffe Karskov, Flemming Madsen (saxophone); Ada Rovatti (soprano saxophone); Joe Farrell (tenor saxophone); Idrees Sulieman, Jens Winther, Palle Mikkelborg, Benny Rosenfeld, Palle Bolvig, Perry Knudsen (flugelhorn); Jense Engel, Vincent Nilsson, Ture Larsen (trombone); Axel Windfeld, Ole Kurt Jensen (bass trombone); Katia Lab?que (piano); Chick Corea (electric piano); Herbie Hancock, Khalid Yasin, Larry Young (organ); Gary Husband , Gayle Moran, Kenneth Knudsen, Ole Kock Hansen, Stu Goldberg, Thomas Clausen (keyboards); Ralphe Armstrong, Dave Holland , Dominique Di Piazza, Doug Rauch, Fernando Saunders, Michael Henderson , Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen, Rick Laird , Stanley Clarke , Jack Bruce, Tony Grey, Billy Rich, Bo Stief, Charlie Haden (bass guitar); Dennis Chambers, Don Alias, Ginger Baker, Jack DeJohnette, Jan Hammer, Michael Shrieve, Narada Michael Walden, Paul Motian, Tony Smith, Tony Williams , Lennart Gruvstedt, Billy Cobham, Buddy Miles (drums); Vince Wilburn, Jr. (electronic drums); Badal Roy, Zakir Hussain (tabla); Ethan Weisgaard, Airto Moreira, Marilyn Mazur, Alyrio Lima, T.H. Vinayakram, Trilok Gurtu (percussion); London Symphony Orchestra, Michael Tilson Thomas.
Additional personnel: Al di Meola, Paco de Lucˇa (acoustic guitar); Carlos Santana (electric guitar); Graham Bond (alto saxophone); Miles Davis (trumpet); Carla Bley (organ); Jaco Pastorius (bass guitar); Trio of Doom, The Guitar Trio, Joe Farrell Quartet, Paul Haines, The Tony Williams Lifetime .
THE ESSENTIAL JOHN MCLAUGHLIN provides a stunning overview of John McLaughlin's diverse recorded output and brain-boggling approach to the guitar. On two discs and 23 tracks, ESSENTIAL splashes McLaughlin's superhuman instrumental technique across a large canvas, giving the listener ample chance to absorb his complex fusion of jazz, world music, rock, avant-garde, and 20th-century chamber styles.
Whether he's abetting Miles Davis during his boundary-pushing electric period, setting a high watermark for fusion with the Mahavishnu Orchestra, or working with his acoustic-based traditional Indian music ensemble, Shakti, McLaughlin's musicianship is restless, fascinating, and ever-inventive. ESSENTIAL provides a service in compiling tracks from across the artist's career, making it a perfect introduction to this iconic figure.