Lonnie Liston Smith made his name as a sideman. He had played piano for Pharoah Sanders, Gato Barbieri and then Miles Davis. His elevation to Miles band led to him becoming very in-demand and he was offered the opportunity to record an LP for Flying Dutchman as leader. Astral Traveling was the result, the first showing of Lonnie's cosmic jazz philosophy, which mixed spiritual jazz with a touch of funk. Over a dense backing rhythm he and saxophonist George Barron improvise beautifully.