Christian Scott – The modern jazz revolution is in good hands

With a rejuvenation in the jazz scene sweeping America, one of its brightest stars Christian Scott took to the Opderschmelz stage in Dudelange on Friday night.

New Orleans born Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah is a trumpeter, composer and producer who is regarded by some as the second coming of Miles Davis. With eight studio albums behind him as well as a Grammy nomination, he’s certainly not letting these comparisons define him. His latest record Stretch Music, highlights his knack of encompassing his musical influences from hop-hop, indie and African rhythms whilst taking them into bold new directions.

As part of a new wave of young exciting jazz musicians that have been crossing genres of late, Scott brings a vibrancy to his sound that can be found wanting in some of the more traditional jazz forms. So to keep things fresh he has surrounded himself with a young and exceptionally talented band, with Corey Fonville on drums, Lawrence Fields on piano and Max Mucha on double bass who are the constant throughout, whilst Logan Richardson on saxophone, Elena Pinderhughes on flute and Scott himself would dive in and out with solos whilst every so often coming together for an all encompassing jam.

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With such eclectic influences it’s of no surprise that the sound jumped from hip-hop rhythms with drum pads to straight up jazz forms, creating an original blend of jazz sophistication, hip-hop attitude and an edginess of alternative rock. It’s these additional rhythms and textures that Scott and the band add that are the key to his trademark “Stretch Music”.

Whilst tension between soft horn harmonies and urgent percussion, brought ferocious energy, Fonville created some wonderful skittering and contemporary beat patterns as it was left to the incredibly talented Pinderhughes to float the delicate melody atop with the flute as she took the rest of the band on a journey with them all happy to follow her feather light touch.

Although the solos might have taken the applause, it was the tireless work of the rhythm section, such as Mucha who relentlessly kept the bass dancing along that was the glue that kept it all together. When Scott announced that it was Much’s first show with the band there were audible gasps from the audience as the performance of the band as a whole sounded like they’ve been playing for years together.

Having played a set of stretch music they came back on stage for an encore of more traditional jazz taking it back to the simpler form whilst still retaining their charisma and energy, as they continued to breakdown barriers between themselves and the audience. It’s this relaxed stage etiquette that the younger jazz musicians are bringing to the genre which will hopefully open it up to a whole new younger audience.

Opderschmelz – 18/11/16

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