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Makaya McCraven|Deciphering The Message

Deciphering The Message

Makaya McCraven

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Bebop jazz remix albums are nothing new. In fact when it comes to the revered Blue Note catalog, it's been plumbed by remixers a number of times in recent years since Don Was took over as label president. As trendy an idea as it is, remixing or more accurately making new albums out of the raw materials provided by a catalog as illustrious as Blue Note's is a delicate dance. To succeed you must stay respectful of the sources while adding to their legacy and making music that, as drummer/remixer Makaya McCraven puts it, "people can vibe to." There's even an underlying educational element to these remixes. If the beat scientist generation hears a track with Lee Morgan's trumpet or Hank Mobley's tenor sax, perhaps this will pique enough curiosity to explore the original records. An edge that McCraven has over straight remixers who may only be manipulating laptops is that he can add live instrumental tracks to samples of the original recordings. With the octet he's assembled—vibraphonist Joel Ross, trumpeter Marquis Hill, alto saxophonist Greg Ward, guitarists Matt Gold and Jeff Parker, bassist Junius Paul, and De'Sean Jones on tenor saxophone and flute—McCraven can control, accentuate and reshape the core rhythms of the older recordings, guiding the remix with live drums and percussion. His method is intricate and controversial, often working best when just he and a few extra instrumentalists contribute. A track like "Wail Bait," written by Quincy Jones and originally played by an all-star group of boppers including trumpeter Clifford Brown, pianist John Lewis and drummer Art Blakey, now has Brown's horn and Blakey's drums opening before McCraven's drums enter and then Jones' flute, Ross' vibraphone and McCraven on guitar take over the tune. In Kenny Burrell's version of "Autumn in New York," here called "Spring in Chicago," his original guitar part meshes beautifully with the added flute and vibes. The massed female voices present in the original of Eddie Gale's "Black Rhythm Happening" are seamlessly joined by drummer McCraven and Jones on tenor sax and flute on a remix of the same name. While Jack Wilson's "Frank's Tune," now called "De'Jeff's Tune," 'ventures a long way from the original with added keyboards and flute, it does have one of McCraven's wisest touches—spoken introductions from original Blue Note records, in this case by Blakey. Adding fresh grooves to classic jazz has uncovered new messages in venerated vessels. © Robert Baird/Qobuz

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Deciphering The Message

Makaya McCraven

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1
A Slice Of The Top
00:03:11

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Billy Higgins, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Hank Mobley, Tenor Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Lee Morgan, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Howard Johnson, Tuba, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - McCoy Tyner, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - James Spaulding, Alto Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Kiane Zawadi, Euphonium, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Jones, A&R - Pee Wee Marquette, Spoken Word, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Percussion, Recording Engineer, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R - Bob Crenshaw, Bass, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

2
Sunset
00:03:47

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Hank Mobley, Tenor Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Paul Chambers, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Philly Joe Jones, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Kenny Dorham, Composer, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Kenny Drew, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Jeff Parker, Guitar, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Joel Ross, Vibraphone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Rachel Jones, A&R - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Percussion, Recording Engineer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Junius Paul, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

3
When Your Lover Has Gone
00:02:10

Einar Aaron Swan, ComposerLyricist - Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Art Blakey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Lee Morgan, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Bobby Timmons, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Wayne Shorter, Tenor Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jymie Merritt, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Joel Ross, Vibraphone, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Jones, A&R - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Percussion, Recording Engineer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Junius Paul, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Matt Gold, Guitar, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

4
Ecaroh
00:02:57

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Art Blakey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Horace Silver, Piano, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Curly Russell, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Joel Ross, Vibraphone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Rachel Jones, A&R - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Guitar, Recording Engineer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

5
Tranquillity
00:03:38

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Ron Carter, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - HERBIE HANCOCK, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Bobby Hutcherson, Vibraphone, AssociatedPerformer - Freddie Hubbard, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Joe Chambers, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - GREG WARD, Alto Saxophone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Rachel Jones, A&R - Pee Wee Marquette, Spoken Word, AssociatedPerformer - De'Sean Jones, Tenor Saxophone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Marquis Hill, Trumpet, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Percussion, Recording Engineer, Synthesizer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Gold, Guitar, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Ben Hutcherson, ComposerLyricist - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

6
Wail Bait
00:02:08

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Quincy Jones, Composer - Art Blakey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Clifford Brown, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Percy Heath, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Gigi Gryce, Alto Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - John Lewis, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Charlie Rouse, Tenor Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - GREG WARD, Alto Saxophone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Joel Ross, Vibraphone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Rachel Jones, A&R - De'Sean Jones, Flute, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Guitar, Percussion, Recording Engineer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Junius Paul, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

7
Coppin' The Haven
00:02:35

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Dexter Gordon, Tenor Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Donald Byrd, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Art Taylor, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Kenny Drew, ComposerLyricist - Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Jones, A&R - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Guitar, Percussion, Recording Engineer, Synthesizer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Gold, Guitar, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

8
Frank's Tune
00:03:37

Garnett Brown, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Bob Cranshaw, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Billy Higgins, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Art Blakey, Spoken Word, AssociatedPerformer - Lee Morgan, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jackie McLean, Alto Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Jeff Parker, Guitar, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Jack Wilson, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Jones, A&R - De'Sean Jones, Flute, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Keyboards, Percussion, Recording Engineer, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R - Frank R Strozier, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

9
Autumn In New York
00:05:55

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Art Blakey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Bobby Timmons, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Vernon Duke, ComposerLyricist - Sam Jones, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Kenny Burrell, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Joel Ross, Vibraphone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Rachel Jones, A&R - De'Sean Jones, Flute, Tenor Saxophone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Marquis Hill, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Recording Engineer, MainArtist, StudioPersonnel - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

10
Monaco
00:02:24

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - Art Blakey, Spoken Word, AssociatedPerformer - Bobby Timmons, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Kenny Dorham, Composer, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Sam Jones, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Kenny Burrell, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Jeff Parker, Guitar, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Arthur Edgehill, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - J.R. Monterose, Tenor Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Jones, A&R - Pee Wee Marquette, Spoken Word, AssociatedPerformer - De'Sean Jones, Tenor Saxophone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Marquis Hill, Trumpet, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Justin Dillard, Drum, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Percussion, Recording Engineer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Junius Paul, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

11
Mr. Jin
00:02:57

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - CEDAR WALTON, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Art Blakey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Lee Morgan, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Wayne Shorter, Composer, Tenor Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Curtis Fuller, Trombone, AssociatedPerformer - Reggie Workman, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Jones, A&R - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Percussion, Recording Engineer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Junius Paul, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

12
C.F.D.
00:03:17

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - RAY BROWN, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Roy Ayers, Vibraphone, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - GREG WARD, Alto Saxophone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Jack Wilson, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Jones, A&R - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Guitar, Percussion, Recording Engineer, Kalimba, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Junius Paul, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Matt Gold, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R - Varney Barlow, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Jack Wilson Jr., ComposerLyricist

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

13
Black Rhythm Happening
00:03:34

Steve Cook, A&R Admin - John Robinson, African Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Cooley, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Elvin Jones, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Eddie Gale, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Charles Davis, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Henry Pearson, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Roland Alexander, Flute, Soprano Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Jimmy Lyons, Alto Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Judah Samuel, Bass, AssociatedPerformer - Rachel Jones, A&R - De'Sean Jones, Flute, Tenor Saxophone, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Dave Vettraino, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Makaya McCraven, Producer, Mixer, Drums, Guitar, Recording Engineer, Bass, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Russell Lyle, Flute, Tenor Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Sylvia Bibbs, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Fulumi Prince, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Sondra Walston, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - William Norwood, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Jo Ann Gale Stevens, Guitar, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Paula Nadine Larkin, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Carol Ann Robinson, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Traci Fuller, A&R Admin - Alex Anastasi, A&R - Justin Seltzer, A&R - Eddie Gale Stevens, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2021 UMG Recordings, Inc.

Album Description

Bebop jazz remix albums are nothing new. In fact when it comes to the revered Blue Note catalog, it's been plumbed by remixers a number of times in recent years since Don Was took over as label president. As trendy an idea as it is, remixing or more accurately making new albums out of the raw materials provided by a catalog as illustrious as Blue Note's is a delicate dance. To succeed you must stay respectful of the sources while adding to their legacy and making music that, as drummer/remixer Makaya McCraven puts it, "people can vibe to." There's even an underlying educational element to these remixes. If the beat scientist generation hears a track with Lee Morgan's trumpet or Hank Mobley's tenor sax, perhaps this will pique enough curiosity to explore the original records. An edge that McCraven has over straight remixers who may only be manipulating laptops is that he can add live instrumental tracks to samples of the original recordings. With the octet he's assembled—vibraphonist Joel Ross, trumpeter Marquis Hill, alto saxophonist Greg Ward, guitarists Matt Gold and Jeff Parker, bassist Junius Paul, and De'Sean Jones on tenor saxophone and flute—McCraven can control, accentuate and reshape the core rhythms of the older recordings, guiding the remix with live drums and percussion. His method is intricate and controversial, often working best when just he and a few extra instrumentalists contribute. A track like "Wail Bait," written by Quincy Jones and originally played by an all-star group of boppers including trumpeter Clifford Brown, pianist John Lewis and drummer Art Blakey, now has Brown's horn and Blakey's drums opening before McCraven's drums enter and then Jones' flute, Ross' vibraphone and McCraven on guitar take over the tune. In Kenny Burrell's version of "Autumn in New York," here called "Spring in Chicago," his original guitar part meshes beautifully with the added flute and vibes. The massed female voices present in the original of Eddie Gale's "Black Rhythm Happening" are seamlessly joined by drummer McCraven and Jones on tenor sax and flute on a remix of the same name. While Jack Wilson's "Frank's Tune," now called "De'Jeff's Tune," 'ventures a long way from the original with added keyboards and flute, it does have one of McCraven's wisest touches—spoken introductions from original Blue Note records, in this case by Blakey. Adding fresh grooves to classic jazz has uncovered new messages in venerated vessels. © Robert Baird/Qobuz

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