Various Artists: Black Lives - From Generation to Generation


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Track review of "Masters of Mud (Shape Shifting)"

Various Artists: Black Lives - From Generation to Generation
Indeed, African Americans are the architects of several musical formations, hearkening back to Scott Joplin's development of 'ragged' rhythms i.e., Ragtime, along with blues, funk, jazz, and other genres, often evolving into various tangents and offshoots. And on this comprehensively entertaining set produced by Belgian Stefany Calembert with assistance from her husband and acclaimed bassist Reggie Washington, they righteously bestow Black Music as a "source of moral truth and potent weapon against racism."

Numerous stars such as saxophonist Marcus Strickland, pianist Andy Milne and artists spanning a multinational consortium appear within these two albums, including extensive liner notes and lyrics. Hence, these buoyant pieces cover lots of territory, such as Afro-Cuban, Hip-Hop, lush balladry, Caribbean sub-grooves, Jazz and a few works that inject a college education of sorts into Pop music.

The final track of the production "Masters of Mud (Shape Shifting)" is a trio, featuring guitarist Jean-Paul Bourelly, who made a splash in the 1990s as a resourceful jazz and jazz fusion performer who possesses a distinct methodology and a partially Hendrix-like sound, while equally comfortable engaging other genres. Moreover, Vincent Henry doubles on baritone and tenor sax, whereas Terrance "Sub Z" Nicholson renders the spoken word.

Although not credited in the album notes, Bourelly also uses electronics, bass, and percussion to generate a funkified electro vibe in support of Nicholson's urbane iterations amid popping bass parts and the instrumentalists' expressive and scorching phraseology. As the rumbling rhythmic element hearken remembrances of Miles Davis' fusion recordings with percussionist James Mtume, but this piece is a bit more supersonic, coupled with imagery of street music for a sweltering summer night. The album closes on an optimistic tone, yet signals an ongoing celebration of these wondrous sessions that help transport the 'The Great Black Music' experience into the eternal spheres of musicality.


Jean-Paul Bourelly: guitar; Vincent Henry: saxophone, baritone; Terrence "Sub Z" Nicholson: voice / vocals.

Album information

Title: Black Lives - From Generation to Generation | Year Released: 2022 | Record Label: Jammin' Colors

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