I went home to Minnesota for the holidays. It was good to get back and talk with family about politics. I tried not to play out the typical democratic/republican shit show. It was good to question their beliefs, but more importantly my own. You learn a lot from seeing other views. Something to take back and reflect on.
Beats Music, previously MOG, now Apple Music, played a huge role in getting us switched from posting singles to primarily playlists. Trent Reznor, head of creative at the time, created a video in 2014 introducing Beats Music and its promise to find the best song to come next.
I’m still not sure if Beats ever fulfilled that promise, or if Apple does now, but I’ve been trying to do it for myself ever since. And hopefully sometimes for you too.
Late Night Jazz was going for new producers’ takes on jazz, but we got some criticism on if they were really jazz songs. I even questioned a few, but all had some form of jazz style in it.
I stretched the style a lot more this time around, so we decided on a word not as narrowly defined. Some beautiful guitar, sax and piano playing on these 20. This kind of music is not getting appreciated enough. Here’s mine.
Whatever people want to classify him as, Nujabes has a sentiment of jazz. Our first look at him on here was almost five years back, within the blog’s first few months running, but I’ve known about Nujabes for years before that.
He came out with a few albums in the early 2000’s that were perfectly in tune with my style of hip hop at the time. Hieroglyphics, The Pharcyde, Jurassic 5 type music.
Ever since the blog started in 2009 my taste has gone to a broader base of electronic. But Nujabes was the first electronic producer focusing on the jazzy side of things and taking hooking it up with some complimentary American MCing. And with that Japanese flavor, it made Nujabes stand out just above the best – for me.
Do not listen to this if it’s before 9pm! Sorry for shouting if it is. Or if you’re in a retrospective mood, that’s acceptable too.
The jazz here isn’t in its traditional sense. It’s inspired by hip hop, the kickdrum mostly, which is kinda funny because it’s really the other way around (jazz inspired hip hop). It’s got a few other genres mixed in there too.
I think I’m starting to get the hang of this whole brass classification thing, alright maybe not fully yet. I know this isn’t the sax at least, or at least I’m pretty sure. I should have been a musician so I could have properly learned this musician mumbo jumbo, now I’m just in it purely for the sound.
Grifta’s ‘The Lost’ has got all the emotion I see with any brass infused track with a downtempo Nujabes like find. It’s still puzzling to me how much emotion brass instruments have over all others to me, something only vocals supersede. Can’t wait for Grifta’s next gift.
I can feel jazz creepin up on the electro scene this coming year. I thought it was going to be rap, but a lot more jazz brass has been popping up. And if I have to wait any longer for hip hop’s revival, I don’t mind so much if it’s with jazz.
Space Captain’s ‘Easier’ features vocals by Maralisa and I don’t know who compliments whom better. Space Captain puts on a fine jazzy beat, but these vocals really capture the feeling. I guess what will tell is who can reinterpret their own sound and make it something more beautiful next time. Could happen together again, but it’s much harder the second time.
The melody isn’t half bad, the wobbles work well and the girl is good for a few cuts in, but that sax is what carries this tune. My obsession with the saxiness has gone back to one of our very first posts (3 minutes in, woof) and far before that. It’s the only instrument that can consistently replace the vocals as the backbone of a piece. And in ‘Jubel,’ the sax is its stature.
Just another one of those ponder your life type nights and what tune to top it off. Toro y Moi’s other project, Les Sins, has one smooth little shit of a song, ‘Grind,’ which turns especially smooth when the vocals kick in.
‘Ninties Man’ starts off as a sombre jazztronic track to tune out to, but intensifies at just the right moment (wait for
the drop it) to turn into one growing acid [jazz] trip. It’s one experimental ride, so don’t cling to it too tight… then again so is most of this site.