Having made his name as a sideman for Art Blakey, Raahsan Roland Kirk and Gato Barbieri, among others, Lonnie Liston Smith was keen to make his first album as a leader once he began working with Miles Davis. Signing with Flying Dutchman, he formed his own group, the Cosmic Echoes. His first album Astral Traveling performed well and he was invited back to make Cosmic Funk . This is a conscious development of the space-influenced jazz that Lonnie was starting to play. Mixing funk rhythms, percussive elements and modal themes, it could be termed this as spiritual jazz, but it moves beyond simple characterisation. The album also adds the distinctive voice of Lonnie's brother Donald to the band for the first time.