GPWW this week features a mix by TOKiMONSTA, Los Angeles DJ and beatsmith who started out as an unfocused classical piano student. That piano training became her musical foundation as she grew to make layered productions with live and digital instrumentation, dusty old vinyl, and whatever else she could find. Signed to Flying Lotus' imprint, Brainfeeder, she's fearless and energetic, having performed with Flying Lotus, Daedelus, Nosaj Thing, Gaslamp Killer, and many other of her fellow beat makers.
The first half of the radio show has some old favorites and new artists, including Esperanza Spalding, Crue-L, Fela Kuti, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, Jazztronik, Ana Tijoux and more.
Jazz is undergoing changes of monumental magnitude and importance. Icons Among Us: jazz in the present tense is a documentary film that captures the metamorphosis of jazz by showcasing the words, music, and spirit of the artists that are paving the way for an unprecedented musical revolution. Featuring Esperanza Spalding, Herbie Hancock, Robert Glasper, Medeski Martin & Wood, Russell Gunn, Dianne Reeves, Ravi Coltrane, Nicholas Payton, and many more. For a taste, grab some downloads and watch some videos we posted a few weeks ago.
When you ask most people, "name a jazz musician today," 9 out of 10 times you will get the name of someone who is already dead. But jazz today is undergoing some monumental changes and in this documentary film — Icons Among Us: jazz in the present tense, by filmmakers Michael Rivoira, Lars Larson and Peter J. Vogt, the musicians take stage front and center to explain the nature of this metamorphosis. Featuring Esperanza Spalding, Herbie Hancock, Robert Glasper, Medeski Martin & Wood, Brian Blade and The Fellowship Band, Russell Gunn, Dianne Reeves, Terence Blanchard, Bill Frisell, Ravi Coltrane, Nicholas Payton, Donald Harrison, Jr., Wayne Shorter and many more. This documentary brings you the rebellious, young, and gifted, responsible for quietly revolutionizing jazz under our noses.
Among those artists participating in the sound revolution is Donald Harrison, Jr. who is making bold moves in the jazz world experimenting to create some very unique compositions. Check out the title track of his latest album Quantum Leap and make sure you also take a peek at the track "NY 2000" featured on the film.
Esperanza Spalding, the beautiful bassist (and vocalist and songwriter) who just released her album Chamber Music Society graciously gave us a little interview. After working with her idols, rapidly gaining critical acclaim and crafting her latest album to perfection, she's at another turning point in her amazing career. Read the full Q&A and get your free download after the jump, and don't forget to check tour dates.
You've already received great attention already from major press to gigs at the White House for Barack Obama. How does it feel to get this international recognition?
Well, it’s very flattering, exciting and a blessing, of course, and it allows me to continue working in music.
You also played in legendary saxophonist Joe Lovano's band. How did you end up working and touring with him?
I met Joe as a student at Berklee, when I was playing in the student ensembles, at the end of my last year he asked me to do some gigs, and I continued to keep working with him over the years, so that’s been about 5 or 6 years now.
Esperanza Spalding, who's already been praised by some of the most powerful people in the world, releases a new album today calledChamber Music Society. “I’m confident that this music will touch people,” she says of Chamber Music Society. “We all want to hear sincerity and originality in music, and anyone can recognize and appreciate when love and truth are transmitted through art. No matter what else has or hasn’t been achieved on this recording, those things are definitely a part of this music. Those are the things I really want to deliver.”