Urban Blues

Leroy Jenkins' Sting, 1986

Let's start by talking about one of the coolest record stores in the country: Dusty Groove. I lived in Chicago for 11 years, and I first knew them as a weird specialty shop above a futon a store on the Eastern side of Wicker Park (or whatever). By the time they moved into their current digs, they dis so as a fully-formed juggernaut of cool. Their site, though not very showy by today's web standards keeps their stock—of not only new, but also used—records up to date. Like any good brick-n-mortar store, Dusty Groove has a niche, but in their hands it's a masterwork of curation. I love to just troll through their listings to see what I never knew I needed.

Which is exactly how I came across Leroy Jenkins' Sting. I had already been digging into both Jenkins' and Billy Bang's discographies of late—patching up what seemed like my significant blindspot for free jazz violinists—but had not yet heard Urban Blues. Seeing it listed, I checked it out then promptly added it to my cart. Here, Jenkins dives into the NYC free-funk scene, head first. This is a full-on, Ornette Coleman's Prime Time inspired, groovy freak out.