Free Lancing

Free Lancing is an album by American guitarist James Blood Ulmer recorded in 1981 and released on the Columbia label.[1] It was Ulmer's first of three albums recorded for a major label.

Free Lancing
Studio album by
ProducerJim Fishel, Roger Trilling & James "Blood" Ulmer
James Blood Ulmer chronology
No Wave
Free Lancing
Black Rock


The Allmusic review by Brian Olewnick awarded the album 4 stars, and states, "it's Ulmer's stinging guitar lines — rough-hewn, corrosive, and scrabbling — throughout this recording that make it one of his finest".[2]

Professional ratings
Review scores
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide[3]

Trouser Press described both Free Lancing and the subsequent Black Rock as "technical masterpieces, making up in precision what they lack in emotion (as compared to Are You Glad to Be in America?). Working to expand his audience, Ulmer concentrates more on electric guitar flash, and actual melodies can be discerned from the improvised song structures (improvisation being one of the keys to harmolodics)."[4]

Track listing

All compositions by James Blood Ulmer

  1. "Timeless" - 4:22
  2. "Pleasure Control" - 5:00
  3. "Night Lover" - 5:22
  4. "Where Did All the Girls Come From?" - 4:38
  5. "High Time" - 4:00
  6. "Hijack" -
  7. "Free Lancing" - 4:42
  8. "Stand Up to Yourself" - 4:37
  9. "Rush Hour" - 5:32
  10. "Happy Time" - 5:11



  1. James Blood Ulmer discography accessed January 12, 2018
  2. Olewnick, B. Allmusic Review accessed July 9, 2010
  3. Swenson, J., ed. (1985). The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide. USA: Random House/Rolling Stone. p. 197. ISBN 0-394-72643-X.
  4. Margasak, Peter; Graham Flashner (2007). "James Blood Ulmer". Trouser Press. Trouser Press LLC. Retrieved July 28, 2010.
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