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David Dalle
Thursday July 14th, 2016 with David Dalle
Black Lives Matter

Black Lives Matter. Today I present a searing emotional program featuring works inspired by and reflecting upon the Black Lives Matter movement in the United States, featuring diverse musicians and composers. Music of great beauty, grief, violence, and peace, including works for orchestra and tape, for piano, spoken word and vocals, for a jazz trio, for traditional Japanese percussion and flutes, early electronic music. New Orleans-born composer and pianist Courtney Bryan has composed several powerful works inspired by Black Lives Matter, we hear her "Spirits" for jazz-inflected piano, vocal soloist and spoken word which names many victims of police shootings; and her "Sanctus" for orchestra and recorded tape, which features recordings of Marlene Pinnock who was unlawfully beaten by a highway police officer and sounds from protests in Fergusson, Missouri. The Eric Revis Trio, with Eric Revis on double-bass, Kris Davis on piano, Gerald Cleaver on drums, has a brand new album out "Crowded Solitudes" and a composition called "Anamnesis, Pt. 1 & Pt. 2 (For Tamir and Ms. Bland)" which mixes despair and peace. I believe the unusual term "Anamnesis" is referring to the Christian meaning related to ritual remembrance, in this case, a memorial for Tamir Rice and Sandra Bland. Kaoru Watanabe, composer, percussionist and flautist who specializes in the Japanese taiko drums, and the Japanese flute shinobue. On his wonderful recent album "Neo" he has a composition entitled "Iki" ("Breath"). This piece was composed in reaction to the killing of Eric Garner. In Watanabe's own words "For this composition, I asked friends to contribute their voices, representing various languages, cultures, nationalities, all reciting "I can't breathe", to a steady pounding on the uchiwa daiko, a fan drum traditionally used to accompany buddhist chanting. The phrase is spoken incrementally louder as it is repeated for many minutes, without even pause for breath. While painful, exhausting and terrifying to perform, this piece is ultimately a meditation for peace and a better world." Perhaps one of the ancestors to this work in particular, is Steve Reich's "Come Out". He was asked to compose this piece by the civil rights activist Truman Nelson to be performed at a benefit for six black youths who were wrongfully arrested for murder and beaten by the police. Reich was given recordings of the voices of these youths and he used one phrase "I had to, like, open the bruise up, and let some of the bruise blood come out to show them". He then took a snippet "Come out to show them" and recorded two copies on two channels which were slightly out of sync, and the two copies slowly move out of phase causing and he splits them up into eight parts. A simple but very effective procedure which greatly amplifies the power of the piece. This work was composed in 1966, 50 years ago, put side by side with "Iki" composed in 2016, it is heartbreaking to see how little has changed.
Sanctus for orchestra and recorded Sound
Courtney Bryan - Soundcloud
Anamnesis Pt. 1 & Pt. 2 (For Tamir and Ms. Bland)
Eric Revis Trio - Crowded Solitudes - Clean Feed Records New
Come Out
Steve Reich - Early Works - Nonesuch
Kaoru Watanabe - Neo - Independent
Courtney Bryan - Soundcloud
Na Six Feet
Pax Nicholas and the Nettey Family - Na Teef Know de Road of Teef - Daptone
Jeguol Naw Betwa
Debo Band - Ere Gobez - FPE Records New
Craig Harris, George Adams, Donald Smith, Fred Hopkins, Charli Persip - Black Bone - Soul Note
Baiana System - Daora: Underground Sounds of Urban Brasil, Hip-Hop, Beats, Afro & Dub - Mais Um Discos
Sommet en Sommet
The Souljazz Orchestra - Inner Fire - Strut Canadian
Na Teef Know de Road of Teef
Pax Nicholas and the Nettey Family - Na Teef Know de Road of Teef - Daptone
Siama Matuzungidi - Rivers - Independent New
Interactive CKCU
David Dalle (host)
Hello, just in case, I am not ignoring systemic racism and related issues in Canada which certainly do exist (particularly towards Canada's First Nations). However the music and musicians chosen for today's program are all American (with the exception of Canadian pianist Kris Davis) and their focus in these compositions is on the United States.

11:13 PM, July 12th, 2016