One of my very favorite musicians, Ahmed Abdul-Malik fused North African and Middle Eastern music with jazz beginning in the late 50s. He grew up in musical Bed-Stuy with Randy Weston, Cecil Payne, Bilal Abduraman, Sam Gill and others (and Max Roach was in the neighborhood). He played bass on some great mid-'50's Thelonious Monk records before making his visionary albums Jazz Sahara (1958) and East Meets West (1960), masterly blends of Middle Eastern rhythms and bebop, mixing Arabic percussion, Abdul-Malik's oud and Johnny Griffin flyin' on top. They are essential early "world music" fusions. He continued making great albums until 1964 that mixed African, Brazilian and Arabic elements with jazz, as well as some lighter cinematic themes. Also participated in the afro-experiments of Art Blakey, highlife with Solomon Ilori, sessions with Yusef Lateef, Jutta Hipp, Coltrane, Weston, Herbie Mann and others.
Here is a selection from East Meets West: