Today, 4/19/13, marks three years since we tragically lost Keith Elam, better known as GURU (Gifted Unlimited Rhymes Universal). The mast lyricist left behind a legacy of innovation, creativity, and experimentation among his many other gifts. Whether contributing his raspy voice to the production of DJ Premier in Gang Starr or fusing his vocal abilities with jazz instrumentals through his own Jazzmatazz projects, G.U.R.U. always pushed the boundaries. In honor of the day, we’ve got a brand new track in honor of GURU by way of Marco Polo, Talib Kweli, and DJ Premier.
Talib Kweli is one of the most respected rappers alive, so it is extremely fitting for him to have one of the dopest live bands to grace the hip-hop medium. This Sunday and Monday (3/17-3/18), Kweli and his band will be hitting at Brooklyn Bowl for his hometown crowd. Opening for them will be respected producer Cory-Mo out of Houston, Texas.
Prince has to be one of the most mysterious and intriguing people to ever present at the Grammy’s. From his attire to his demeanor he simply captivated the audience with zero small talk or fanfare (save for his cane). As our OKP family aptly stated, “No disrespect to JT, but no one does smooth and sexy like Prince.” What’s more is that with a new track out and a new website selling tracks and remixes, there will also be a Tribute Concert to Prince at Carnegie Hall curated by none other than our favorite Prince-fanatic — Questlove.
Before the Internet, I can imagine that the art of sampling was much more arcane. I wish I could speak from experience in this case, but I am a child of the Digital Age. My venture into hip-hop began well after global interconnectivity was established. We now live in a world where it is nearly impossible to not know the samples behind one’s favorite hip-hop or R&B record. With sites like WhoSampled.com and The-Breaks.com, one can look up a track and immediately find where all the track’s chops came from. This all comes complete with YouTube videos and Spotify links, and the exact time where one can find a sampled portion in an original track.
Multi-instrumentalist, producer, and singer, Louis Cato is a ball of versatility and a special brand of bright. Armed with perfect pitch and a precocious thirst for sound that first surfaced in him as a child, Cato is next in the lineage of ear, aesthetic, and outright skill – forces that have combined in the past to offer stylistic progenitors Victor Wooten and Marcus Miller – that have helped bring the sound of the bass from the side to the fore.
Happy Birthday to the one and only songstress, activist, and inspiration Nina Simone. Check out some responses from artists around the web!
The legendary Talib Kweli sat down to give The Revivalist some straight talk on the dynamics behind his myriad of projects. From DJ’s to live bands, and from hip-hop to jazz Talib walks us through what it takes to be in his band and why a group without a DJ can’t be playing hip-hop…with a few notable exceptions. Talib lays loose into why he loves to play with a live band and what it takes to be a go-to musician for Idle Warship.
It’s that time of year again for the UCLA Jazz Reggae Festival. This year marks a historic 25 years of the festival with past performers including the Roots, Erykah Badu, Raphael Saadiq, Q-Tip, Bilal, Quadron, Nicholas Payton, Roy Hargrove, Roy Ayers, Barrington Levy, and many, many more. It is one of the largest student-run festivals in the US with upwards of 30,000 people attending each of the two days in past years.
With The Effect, one thing I wanted to do was break all the stereotypes of jazz and what people think they might know because they saw something on TV. I just want to get them the modern day jazz musicians, which we are, just get them the full spectrum of what we do. Miles is definitely my biggest influence though. And I would say that because I really like his use of space and also his approach to fingering his horn, the melody. He always gives the listener something to hold onto and that’s one thing that I really love about Miles. Another thing is that he’s always constantly evolving with the times. He never sounded stale. So no matter what the environment, it was just Miles. He just did his thing over it, and it was always consistent. It’s something that I definitely strive for in my playing.
More so a homage to her collaborations with talented artists than a new release, Norah Jones’ forthcoming …Featuring shows where Norah has been in the past decade or so. If you have been following her career at all, you won’t be surprised to find her collection to be wide and diverse. Norah has such a distinctively deep timbre that literally feels good to listen to; it’s no wonder her musical peers continue to seek out her vocal prowess.