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Jazz - Released June 1, 2018 | Blue Note

There is a before and an after 1986 for Marcus Miller. That year, the bassist was 27 years old and composed and produced Miles Davis’ famous Tutu. Since then, the career of this four-string virtuoso has expanded with stunning albums for others (over 500!) and for himself (more than twenty), as well as multiple collaborations… Like often with Marcus Miller, the borders between jazz, funk, soul and blues are magnificently blurred. And it is once again the case with this Laid Black. After Afrodeezia, which he designed like a musical journey through his personal history, retracing the path of his ancestors, Laid Black falls within present time with a cocktail of all the urban sounds he loves: hip-hop, trap, soul, funk, R&B and, of course, jazz. In fact, this kind of 180° overview is the man’s trademark. Shuffling between various currents of African-American music. And even inserting a few clever references when he covers Que Será, Será (Whatever Will Be, Will Be) popularised by Doris Day, but using Sly Stone’s arrangement from 1973 Fresh… For this 2018 opus, Marcus Miller has called upon a few sharp shooters such as Trombone Shorty, Kirk Whalum, Take Six, Jonathan Butler and the young Belgian soul sister Selah Sue. Groove galore and precise yet never sickening pyrotechnics are at the core of an album that only its author knows how to make. © Clotilde Maréchal/Qobuz

Jazz - Released May 18, 2018 | Blue Note

A good contact goes a long way. Don Was being the boss at Blue Note, he didn’t have to think long before signing Dave McMurray who had been his saxophonist in the band Was (Not Was)… Despite their bond and this new hierarchical link, the label’s president left his recruit completely free for this delightful Music Is Life. “I know Dave plays extremely well, Don Was explained. There’s no bullshit with him! He’s not the kind of musician who just drops his plans gratuitously to impress everyone. It’s only sincerity with him.” To construct his album’s repertoire, Dave McMurray decided to combine original compositions with a few well-chosen, at times surprising covers like George Clinton’s Atomic Dog, the White Stripes’ Seven Nation Army and even Johnny Hallyday’s Que je t’aime! With bassist Ibrahim Jones and drummers Ron Otis and Jeff Canady on his sides, he mixes frontal and percussive jazz with corrosive soul and gritty blues music. His saxophone starts from the guts, and aims right back for them! A proper chameleon (he played with B.B. King, the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Iggy Pop, Patti Smith, Bonnie Raitt, Johnny Hallyday, Gladys Knight, Albert King, Nancy Wilson, Bootsy Collins, Herbie Hancock, Geri Allen, Bob James and countless others), he manages to retain his own voice, no matter the partition he tackles. © Clotilde Maréchal/Qobuz