Jackie McLean is seven years old when his father John McLean, guitarist with Tiny Bradshaw, passes away. He is exposed to recordings of Lester Young, a musician he considers ‘far out’, and when his father in law buys a record store, he absorbs the complete history of jazz. At that point his mother had already bought an alto sax on credit and she also paid for his lessons at the New York School of Music. McLean soon blows good enough to be able to fill in for Charlie Parker when the latter was too stoned or drunk to play his gigs. McLean got rid of the image that he was just a Parker impersonator by searching for his own voice. If he still plays like Parker, it’s with a wink at West Coast Jazz and he also shows that he doesn’t shun the influences of Ornette Coleman.