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Sun Ra "ultimate backbone of music"

The music world is full of larger-than-life characters, but surely few more extraordinary than the late Sun Ra, an African American bandleader who claimed he was visiting Earth from Saturn, leaving a trail of music in his wake.

His band, now known as The Arkestra, is still touring the world, with 91-year-old director and leading man, Marshall Allen, very much at the helm.

Robin Warren spoke to Sun Ra expert and BBC 6 Music DJ, Gilles Peterson, about why, 23 years after the its leader passed on, the music and legacy of the Sun Ra Arkestra is perhaps more relevant than ever.

(Photo: Sun Ra Arkestra at Glastonbury, 2014. Credit: BBC)

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4 minutes