Truth and Reconciliation: New Music from Darrell Grant
(Published: May 04, 2007)
The Big Picture
I choose to believe in the power of humans to change the world. Art is the substance of our dreams and the medium through which resonates our most fervent hopes, highest aspirations, deepest truths, and most profound experiences. Those who create art possess a consequent extraordinary power to communicate, inspire, provoke, inform and to move others to transform society and themselves, and we bear the responsibility to use this power to affect positive change in our communities and the world.
The music documented on the recording Truth and Reconciliation is a vehicle through which to pursue this mission and encourage others to do the same. It exists as a source of truth and beauty, as a tool to bring people together, as a means to provide support to those who are working to bring a better quality of life to others, and as a testament to the belief that life is good. I believe these functions are intrinsic to the survival of the arts, and in keeping with the spirit of cooperation, generosity, and abundance that characterize my community, and am committed using every available means to connect with other individuals and organizations committed to this purpose.
I hope to make Truth and Reconciliation available worldwide in the fall of 2006, and to support the release of the CD with a series of tour performances, which will raise public awareness of the humanitarian and community-building efforts going on. Net proceeds from these performances will be donated to the Truth and Reconciliation Project's partner non-profit organizations to further their work of positive change.
This musical vision would never have been realized without the soul-filled contributions of some very special individuals. Not only are they some of the most respected artists in contemporary music, they share my passion for making music that both expands the imagination and touches the soul.
Darrell Grant - piano, elec. piano, vocals, arrangements
John Patitucci - acoustic bass
Brian Blade - drums
Bill Frisell - guitar
Steve Wilson - saxophones
Joe Locke - vibes
Adam Rogers - guitar
This recording was inspired by three rather disparate things: my own reflections about artistic truth; my reading on the struggle for justice and healing in South Africa; and the birth of my son Malcolm, for whom I wanted to provide a document of what I find true and beautiful in this world. I hope the result reflects some small part of the courage, pain, wisdom and humanity that I see around me. Like all people, I am the sum of my experiences. This music is an effort to reconcile my roots, my loves, the wisdom of my teachers, and the contradictions of my life. What resulted has taken the shape of instrumental pieces, vocal songs, and voices from the past that still speak the truth to me.
About Darrell Grant
Darrell Grant has built an international reputation as a stellar pianist, skilled composer and committed educator. Since being introduced to international audiences in 1988 as the pianist in vocalist Betty Carter's trio, Darrell has performed with jazz luminaries including Frank Morgan, Sonny Fortune, Roy Haynes, Chico Freeman, Don Braden, Greg Osby and a host of others. In 1992 he replaced Mulgrew Miller as pianist in the late drummer Tony Williams' quintet.
Since the 1994 release of his debut CD, Black Art--selected as one of the year's top ten jazz CD's by the New York Times--Darrell has performed extensively as a bandleader and solo artist throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe in venues ranging from clubs and concert stages to major jazz festivals. He has been a featured guest on the BET on Jazz (”the cable jazz channel”) Jazz Central television program, and has performed on Marian McPartland's Peabody Award-winning Piano Jazz series on National Public Radio.
A graduate of the Eastman School of Music and the University of Miami, in 1997 Grant relocated from New York, replacing pianist Andrew Hill on the faculty of Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, where he is now a tenured professor of jazz studies. An active advocate for education and the arts, Grant is also the founding director of the Leroy Vinnegar Jazz Institute,(www.lvji.pdx.edu) an independent Institute housed within PSU's School of Fine and Performing Arts. LVJI's mission is to preserve and promote the art form, cultural heritage, and social history of jazz music in the Northwest through education, outreach, and historical documentation.
Darrell's five albums as a leader have received both critical acclaim and topped jazz radio charts. Black Art, selected as one of the year's top ten jazz CD's by the New York Times, was followed up by Darrell's 1995 release The New Bop with Seamus Blake, Scott Wendholdt & Brian Blade), and1998's Twilight Stories (with Don Braden),each of which received critical acclaim and reached the top of the jazz airplay charts. In 1999, Grant released Smokin' Java, (with Donald Harrison, Joe Locke and Brian Blade), his debut on his own Lair Hill Records. Called a “love-letter to the Pacific Northwest,the CD, which also included a short story by Grant, received national attention, topping jazz airplay charts, selling nearly 10,000 copies and raising funds to benefit Coffee Kids, a non-profit that supports families and children in coffee growing regions. Darrell's most recent release, Spirit (2003) is an emotional and deeply personal statement. Drawing from a wellspring of influences that include classical, gospel, jazz, pop, and folk, Spirit spins out new stories on universal themes of innocence, hope, family, and community with “heartfelt melodicism, soulful honesty, and quiet beauty.” Continuing his musical activism, Grant supported the CD's release with a five-state tour of benefit concerts which raised funds for social justice programs
More Information: http://darrellgrant.com
Submitted By: jazzears