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Black Art Jazz Collective: Presented By The Side Door Jazz Club

Black Art Jazz Collective: Presented By The Side Door Jazz Club

In The July issue of Downbeat, the Kamasi Washington cover story was followed by a piece on 25 musicians who merit following to see where jazz will go. That’s fine, but what about the present legion of forward thinking, highly proficient and creative players? The magazine is not big enough to cover them all, but I can tell you where to find six of them – RIGHT NOW and together.

The Black Art Jazz Collective are saxophonist Wayne Escoffery, trumpeter Jeremy Pelt, trombonist James Burton III, pianist Xavier Davis, bassist Vicente Archer and drummer Jonathan Blake.

The intent is to celebrate African American culture, significant political figures and, of course Jazz Icons.

Listen and you hear it, sounds steeped in Freddie Hubbard, Bobby Hutcherson, Wayne Shorter, among others, played forward, and captured in a studio session at The Side Door Jazz Club in Old Lyme, Connecticut.

Escoffery’s “Double Consciousness” was inspired by Civil Rights pioneer, W.E.B.Dubois.

Piianist Davis and Escoffery point to Barak Obama on “Awaiting Change”  and “No Small Change”, both quiet explorations for the group.

Trombonist Burton gives us “Going Somewhere”, inspired by activist Sojourner Truth, as you might imagine, steps along proudly, here defyhing anyone to out sanctify this collective.

You’ll hear “Devil Eyes” written by the late bassist Dwayne Burno, a founding member of the group.

Just when you get into this recording, it’s over, which is a good thing. They leave with you wanting to know how they’ll swing the music next.

Black Art Jazz Collective comes out July 22nd from Sunnyside Records.


Gary Walker / Morning Jazz





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