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El'Zabar, Kahil Quartet: A Time for Healing (Spiritmuse Records)

Chicago spiritual jazz shaman, drummer/percussionist Kahil El'Zabar, leads a quartet of younger generation musicians--Corey Wilkes (trumpet), Justin Dillard (keyboards), Isaiah Collier (saxophone)--through a set of seven original compositions, plus Coltrane's "Resolution"; warmly soulful grooves intended as the healing force so needed in the context of this album's era.
 

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product information:


UPC: 634457071438

Label: Spiritmuse Records
Catalog ID: CD-KEZ-007
Squidco Product Code: 31233

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2021
Country: UK
Packaging: Digipack
Recorded at Music Garage in Chicago, Illinois, in December, 2020, by Lee Farmer and Sizwe Banzi.


Personnel:

Kahil El'Zabar-drums, Cajon, Kalimba, voice

Justin Dillard-keyboards, percussion

Corey Wilkes-percussion, trumpet

Isaiah Collier-tenor saxophone, soprano saxophone, reeds, percussion

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Artist Biographies:

"Musician Kahil El'Zabar was born in Chicago, on November 11, 1953. One of three children growing up in a South Side neighborhood, El'Zabar fell in love with the myriad sounds of the city, from doo-wop to jazz. After attending Catholic schools in Chicago, El'Zabar went to Kennedy-King College and later to Malcolm X and Lake Forest colleges. In 1973, he traveled to Africa to attend the University of Ghana and study African music firsthand.

El'Zabar began studying African music at an early age, taking a special interest in drumming. At the age of eighteen, he joined Chicago's Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, and by 1975 he was chairman of the organization. During the early 1970s, El'Zabar also formed his own musical group, the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble, and later another group, Ritual Trio, with which he still performs. His musical abilities have allowed him to play with such greats at Stevie Wonder, Paul Simon and Nina Simone, and he has toured the world with both his own groups and others. El'Zabar is active in more than just music, however. He has appeared in several films, including Mo' Money, How U Like Me Now and The Last Set. From 1996 to 1999, El'Zabar organized Traffic at Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre, an inter-arts program featuring music and poetry.

El'Zabar has also served as an associate professor at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln and the University of Illinois at Chicago. He has published a book, Mis'taken Brilliance, and tailors clothing both for his band and for others. He is active on the boards of several organizations, including serving as the chairman of The Sun Drummer, an African American drum society, and on the board of directors of the National Campaign for Freedom of Expression. El'Zabar lives in Chicago. He has six children."

-The History Makers (https://www.thehistorymakers.org/biography/kahil-elzabar-39)
12/2/2022

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Justin Dillard: Born and raised on the west side of Chicago and attending both Vandercook College of Music and The Velvet Lounge; his studies at both institutions gave him the honorable privilege to work with innovators locally and globally performing/recording with and/or receiving tutelage from the likes of: Branford Marsalis, Robert Irving III, Ornette Coleman, the late jazz master Von Freeman and Roscoe Mitchell to name a few. Howard Reich (Chicago Tribune arts critic) writes: "A new generation of jazz improvisers has emerged in Chicago in recent years, but few are more promising than organist/pianist Justin Dillard. Musically, Dillard tends to be all over the keyboard, drawing upon the examples of virtuosos such as Dr. Lonnie Smith, Eddie Harris and McCoy Tyner. But there's something more to Dillard's work as well; a quest for new ideas in music, in the manner of his AACM mentors." Justin has performed on national television (ABC) with his organ expose' The DOT; and has played in various genres spanning Avant Garde with the late tenor master Fred Anderson to a Dave Matthews tribute band (Crash). He continues to transform his career by composing for and peforming with his vast array of ensembles; all while accompanying great musicians all over the world. Stay tuned..."

-Hammond Organ (https://hammondorganco.com/artists/organ-and-leslie-artists/justin-dillard/)
12/2/2022

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Corey Wilkes has established himself as one of the best improvising trumpeters in the modern era. Having the skill and maturity to approach mainstream repertoire of jazz standards with his own unique sensibilities, he combines them with his deep appreciation of hip-hop. Corey continues to bring his brand of musicianship and talent to the forefront of the genre.

As a child, growing up in the suburbs of Chicago, Wilkes was surrounded by the sounds of Blues, R&B, Soul, Funk and Jazz. He picked up the trumpet for the first time at the age of 10 participating in his school band programs. Corey's natural talent immediately began to flourish. His confidence and maturity were well beyond his years. As a student at Rich South High School in Richton Park, Illinois, his hard work and dedication secured him a spot in the Illinois All State Honors Jazz Combo; the first student in the school's history to do so.

Corey has also shared the stage with numerous Jazz Masters including but not limited to; Wynton Marsalis, Roy Hargrove, James Moody, Kurt Elling, Von Freeman, Greg Osby, Roscoe Mitchell, Marcus Belgrave, Clark Terry, Harry "Sweets" Edison and Mulgrew Miller. His soulful notes can be heard gracing a variety of contemporary projects including sets by DJ Logic, Osunlade and Josh Deep; tracks on Hidden Beach Recordings Presents: Unwrapped Vol. 4, Kahil El Zabar's Ascension Loft Series as well as Nona Hendryx, Soulive, Meshell Ndegocello and Ledisi."

-ArtistEcard (https://artistecard.com/CoreyWilkes)
12/2/2022

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Isaiah Collier is a Chicago-based writer, educator, arranger, and composer. An alumnus of the Jazz Institute of Chicago and The Chicago High School for the Performing Arts, Collier has worked and played with Chicago legends such as Willie Pickens, Delores Scott, Ernest Dawkins, Ari Brown, Dee Alexander, Maggie Brown, Robert Irving III, and Charles Heath IV, in addition to national and international artists such as Rene Marie, Chance the Rapper, Stefon Harris, Roy McCurty, Carmen Bradford, Carl Allen, Bennie Maupin, Bobby Broom, Quincy Phillips, Lisa Henry, Wyclef Gordon, Lewis Nash, and the AACM. Collier draws influence from saxophone masters such as John Coltrane,Ari Brown, Roscoe Mitchell, and Gene Ammons. He has had many mentors, including Antonio Hart,Joan Collaso, Ari Brown, Willie Pickens, Ernest Dawkins, Bennie Maupin, James Perkins, Charles Heath, Bobby Watson, and others. Collier and his band " The Chosen Few just recently returned from Europe. Collier is fascinated with sounds. He believes the stage to be a lab where he can experiment and explore with sounds. To make a new statement."

-Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/events/333269935227552/?ref=newsfeed)
12/2/2022

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.
track listing:


1. A Time for Healing 13:09

2. Drum Talk (Run'n in the Streets) 6:47

3. Urban Shaman 10:43

4. Eddie Harris 7:53

5. The Coming of Spring 9:20

6. Resolution 8:30

7. We'll Get Through This 6:03

8. Time IS 10:52

9. Summertime 4:28
sample the album:








descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Chicago's legendary spiritual jazz shaman Kahil El'Zabar returns, leading an enviable ensemble of young masters from his hometown!

Kahil El'Zabar delivers yet another epic double LP's worth of ancient/future music for the mind, body and soul. From swinging jazz that sings of his Chicago pedigree, to talking drums and soothing spiritual grooves that reconnect Black Classical Music with its African roots.

Multi-percussionist, band-leader, vocalist, composer, conductor and educator, Kahil El'Zabar has been at the forefront of the unceasingly creative avant-garde jazz scene in Chicago and beyond for over 4 decades. Considered the pioneer of spiritual groove and Afrocentric jazz, El'Zabar has recorded & performed with heavyweights such as Pharoah Sanders, Archie Shepp, David Murray, Billy Bang, Lester Bowie, Nina Simone and Stevie Wonder, to name a few.

Returning to his natural home on Spiritmuse Records, 'A Time for Healing' answers the urgent questions posed by his sold-out 'America The Beautiful' album, addressing the state of affairs today whilst calling for a better tomorrow. Hugely successful and universally acclaimed, the album was championed by Pitchfork, the Guardian and Gilles Peterson. As ever, the Chicago legend surrounds himself with the hottest young talent. Sonic scientist, Isaiah Collier joins on saxophone. Following his recent acclaimed album, 'Cosmic Transitions' LP, he has been hailed as the new 'Coltrane'. Suffice to say, he doesn't disappoint, as El'Zabar leads the ensemble through hypnotic groove after groove, providing Collier with ample space to improvise and uplift, channeling the spiritual sound of Trane and Pharoah.

Following stand-out performances on 'America The Beautiful' and the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble album, 'Be Known Ancient/Future/Music', El'Zabar disciple Corey Wilkes, considered one of best trumpeters in the world today, returns and shines once again. Having also worked with the likes of Roy Hargrove, Kurt Elling, Greg Osby and Marcus Belgrave, and who also filled the considerable shoes of Lester Bowie in The Art Ensemble of Chicago, leads stellar groups of his own, and has received plaudits from NPR and the Chicago Tribune.

Keyboard wizard Justin Dillard, who truly shone on his collaboration with El'Zabar on 'Spirit Groove', returns for another stellar performance, steeped in the heritage of Dr. Lonnie Smith and McCoy Tyner. Chicago Tribune puts it this way, "there's something more to Dillard's work as well; a quest for new ideas in music, in the manner of his AACM mentors". His earthy Hammond grooves simultaneously ground and lift the quartet's sound.

Kahil El'Zabar explores the gamut of Great Black Music in America, tracing its lineage through all the movements that's flourished in Chicago, from the blues to R&B, soul, gospel, house music, spiritual jazz, and then back to all of its common African roots. This is captured brilliantly on the title track, where kalimba and spirit bowls evoke the ancestors, before the horns commence a yearning refrain, calling for guidance and healing. Then, El'Zabar's new tomorrow hails its' arrival on "The Coming Of Spring", a beautiful swinging number full of joy and hope.

El'Zabar continues to pay homage to his mentors and idols, dedicating one "electrifying" number to tenor legend and electrified sax pioneer "Eddie Harris". Long undervalued, his footprint nonetheless persists, as world renowned DJs no-less-than Theo Parris turn new audiences on to his avant-garde grooves. Elsewhere, "Resolution", the central piece of Coltrane's revered 'Love Supreme', is transformed by the quartet, with Dillard providing a fresh low-end groove on Hammond before delivering a stellar solo.

The album closes on a beautiful and hauntingly sparse treatment of Gershwin's "Summertime". Centered around El'Zabar's legendary kalimba playing and a hummed groove. Wilkes, Collier and El'Zabar deliver the standard's well-travelled melody with unheard depths and heart-wrenching spirituality.

Recorded in December 2020 in Chicago, 'A Time For Healing' is not only the answer to the urgent questions asked by El'Zabar's 'America the Beautiful'; its' spiritual and ever probing human journey offers a regenerative opus in the face of growing global anxiety. What the world needs right now is exactly what El'Zabar and his quartet have on offer: A Time for Healing."-Spiritmuse Records

Related Categories of Interest:


Improvised Music
Jazz
Free Improvisation
Chicago Jazz & Improvisation
Quartet Recordings
Song Based Music
New in Improvised Music
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