Experimental electronic music producer Flying Lotus, born Steven Ellison, is a grandson of songwriter Marilyn McLeod (the co-writer of Diana Ross’ “Love Hangover”), as well as a great-nephew of pianist Alice Coltrane, and therefore a cousin of saxophonist Ravi Coltrane. Ellison made beats for the Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim network before releasing his debut full-length, 1983, which resembled the work of fellow avant-garde hip-hop producers Madlib, J Dilla, and Ammoncontact on Plug Research in 2006.
Following the six-song EP Reset, he released his second full-length, Los Angeles, on Warp in 2008. A three-part series of satellite EPs consisting of remixes and additional productions trailed through the next year. Cosmogramma, his third and most complex album, was issued on the same label in 2010, while the relatively pared-down Until the Quiet Comes followed in 2012. The suite-like You’re Dead!, on which he was joined by Herbie Hancock, Kendrick Lamar, and Snoop Dogg, and Captain Murphy (Ellison’s rapping alias), among others, came two years later. Ellison’s considerable quantity of additional production and remix work is scattered across dozens of releases on revered labels such as Tectonic, Hyperdub, Ghostly International, and Ninja Tune — the last of which is the distributor of his Brainfeeder label, home to releases by the likes of the Gaslamp Killer, Austin Peralta, Martyn, frequent collaborator Thundercat, and Taylor McFerrin.