Home Reviews San Jose Jazz Summer Fest: Kamasi Washington & the West Coast Down

San Jose Jazz Summer Fest: Kamasi Washington & the West Coast Down

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Another San Jose Jazz “discovery” is the dynamic saxophonist, composer Kamasi Washington, who recently put out a 3-disc opus and musical deluge appropriately titled, The Epic.

California Theatre at dusk. San Jose, California, USA
California Theatre at dusk. San Jose, California, USA

I caught up with Washington and the West Coast Get Down at the historic California Theatre, where the collective showcased new music by bassists Miles Mosley, drummers Lyndon Rochelle and Tony Austin, keyboardist, Brandon Coleman, vocalist Patrice Quinn, pianist Cameron Graves, trombonist Ryan Porter, trumpeter Igmar Thomas and flutist, Richie Washington.

The collective is a visual and aural feast. It transcends cultural boundaries and conventional genres and dispels preconceived notions of what a “jazz band,” or for that matter, what any band, should or shouldn’t be.

The music comes from deep down and from years of cultivating an instinctive “language” that encompasses elements of Gospel, West Coast funk, near jazz, R&B, Their sound is soulful, dense, powerful and intense, and best appreciated and experience in a live setting.

For a “taste” of Kamasi Washington check out The Epic (Brainfeeder) and a slew of yet-to-be-released recordings that features members of the collective as leaders.

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http://www.kamasiwashington.com/

Photos: Tomas Peña (with the exception of the California Theatre).

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