A lost legacy in spiritual jazz – two albums recorded by a Boston group who worked far from the limelight
in New York – in a very underground scene where they recorded these two very special albums in the 70s! Their sound is very collaborative and freewheeling – an approach that reminds us a lot of music by Phil Cohran and The Artistic Heritage Ensemble. The first album in the set is The Beginning Of A New Birth – a record that really lives up to its title, given the joyous energy it brings into being – a very collaborative vibe that has the entire ensemble working together on two side-long tracks – mixing rootsy percussion, avant solos, and unified voices that really give the music a special touch! The mix of ensemble vocals and reed elements is a bit like some of the Max Roach or Billy Harper projects of the time – but the approach is looser, less structured, and very organic. Players include Michael Cosmic on alto, Raquib Ishma'll Hassan on tenor, Phil Musra on soprano sax, Shaddu Jones on piano, and Robert Fuff on bass – and titles include "The Beginning Of A New Birth" and "The Prayer". As Time Flows on is the second record – and has a style that's maybe slightly more compact – still every bit as spiritual as before, but with some shorter tracks that bring the group's ideas into even deeper focus! The group is smaller, but still uses voice along with their instrumentation – which comes from the work of Earl Grant Lawrence on flute, Jamyll Jones on bass, Shaddu Jones on piano, and Larry Roland, Roy Hall, and Chauncy Hutcherson on percussion. Some vocals are more solo, and even hit a bit of a hip protest vibe – and titles include "Nine Degrees & Cold", "Black Woman", "To Do Nothing", "The Mind", and "Rain". Comes with a great booklet – which tells the group's unique story!