“This record came about from us jamming on tour with James. He’d do his soundcheck, and then he’d leave and we’d keep playing. After a while, I said, ‘Why don’t we make an album of instrumental tunes and see if anyone is interested?’
“Of course, I was already enthralled by Booker T, The Meters, The Nightlighters, bands like that. But then, right around this time, the Mahavishnu Orchestra hit, and they seduced all of us. I used to go see them with David Crosby at the Whiskey A Go-Go, and I thought, ‘Holy mother of God – what the fuck? Listen to this!’ It was a game-changer. John McLaughlin floored me. I don’t think there’s anyone who can touch him, as both a guitarist and a composer.
“A lot of people were like, ‘Oh, man, I’m never gonna play again.’ I went home and started practicing. I picked up my guitar and started playing as fast as I could, finding scales and modes – I was completely thrilled. Mahavishnu really kicked me in the butt.
“The music affected Russ and Lee, too. They were knocked out. So we had a great time making this album. We made three records, eventually moving into more of a fusion thing. It was a lot of fun.”