In the storied and woefully under-celebrated history of Los Angeles Jazz, community has remained the beating heart and driving force. In the 1960s, Horace Tapscott's Pan Afrikan People's Arkestra and Union of God Musicians Ascension Association connected local jazz
musicians. More recently, Los Angeles' new Jazz Renaissance has flourished both on a local and global scale through steady collaboration and mentorship of the next generation. Take a close look at the current jazz landscape, and it soon becomes apparent that the Inglewood-based Katalyst Collective are the new torchbearers of this tradition. Founded in 2014, Katalyst Collective has never been one for labels. Rather than strictly a live act, they've acted as an incubator for a fresh crop of local talent, helping hone the voices and talents of individual members, while collectively advancing like a phalanx. Each "Kat" writes their own solo material, and everyone contributes and works together on each project, feeding off the communal energy.
The group's LA bona fides are clear- between the nine members, there are affiliates and alumni of the aforementioned Pan Afrikan People's Arkestra, as well as USC, UCLA, and Cal State Northridge's music programs. You've heard them link with iconic Angelenos, such as MNDSGN, Anderson .Paak, SiR, & Kendrick Lamar. You may have seen them backing jazz icons like Roy Ayers, Gary Bartz, and Lonnie Liston Smith. You’ve felt their impact on projects from superstars like Lupe Fiasco, Jay-Z & Solange. With little public fanfare, their guest appearances and collaborations have quietly become highly sought after among the jazz and pop cognoscenti.
Leading up to the group’s upcoming collaboration with Adrian Younge and Ali Shaheed
Muhammad for Jazz Is Dead, the Katalyst Collective have poised themselves as the next breakout stars of Los Angeles' rapidly expanding Jazz universe - a small army of creative firebrands, each burning more brightly together.