Jackie McLean stars in the 1980 documentary "Jackie McLean On Mars", produced, directed and edited by Ken Levis. ("Appointment in Ghana" accompanies the introductory photo sequence).
An alto saxophonist since he was fifteen Jackie McLean started out performing with Sonny Rollins in the late 1940s and went on to play with Miles Davies, and Paul Bley with whom he would first record during the early 1950s.
In 1956 Jackie split his time between Charles Mingus and "Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers" followed up with leadership of his own quintet in 1958.
From the late 1950s well into the '60s he performed with artists including Ornette Coleman, Dexter Gordon, Donald Byrd, Sonny Clark, Lee Morgan, Billy Higgins, Freddie Hubbard, Bobby Hutcherson, and Mal Waldron.
After touring Japan in 1968 McLean began teaching at the Hartt School of Music and also toaught in Europe.
Jackie McLean's unique approach as a jazz instructor would be immortalized in in Ken Levis's 1980 documentary film "Jackie McLean On Mars."