rolling stone on new comp ‘jazz is dead 001’
Hear Ali Shaheed Muhammad, Adrian Younge Team With Jazz Royalty on New Comp ‘Jazz Is Dead 001’ which features new tracks created by the Midnight Hour duo in collaboration with esteemed veterans like Roy Ayers, Gary Bartz, and much more.
In 2017, the Los Angeles promoter Andrew Lojero had an idea for a new jazzconcert series. Along with A Tribe Called Quest DJ-producer Ali Shaheed Muhammad and prolific R&B and hip-hop composer-producer Adrian Younge — the duo behind throwback soul project the Midnight Hour and the Luke Cage soundtrack — he began putting together bills featuring esteemed jazz veterans such as Roy Ayers and Gary Bartz, and rising stars of the genre like Keyon Herrold. Lojero dubbed the series Jazz Is Dead.
“I thought the name was bold, provocative and exactly what was needed to stir things up,” Muhammad writes in an email. “For us it’s more than a show; it’s a celebration of our treasured bastions of freedom.”
Now, three years later, the team is furthering the project with the launch of a new label bearing the same name. The first release, Jazz Is Dead 001 — officially out March 20th and premiering below — is a compilation on which Younge and Muhammad team up with their musical heroes to create brand-new tracks.
The track list is studded with artists who have been sampled for years by hip-hop heavyweights such as A Tribe Called Quest, Dr. Dre, Nas, and J Dilla: jazz-funk vibraphonist Ayers; Bartz, the saxophonist, NTU Troop leader, and onetime Miles Davis sideman; Brian Jackson, who collaborated with Gil Scott-Heron on a long string of landmark Seventies albums; bossa nova luminaries João Donato and Marcos Valle; keyboardist Doug Carn, whose Seventies LPs on Oakland’s Black Jazz label are highly prized by crate diggers; and Brazilian jazz-funk outfit Azymuth.
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