Following his Mercury-nominated The Comet is Coming, London-based saxophonist and bandleader Shabaka Hutchings has taken a left turn with ambitious Afro-Futurist project, Wisdom of Elders.
The album is a document of sessions that Hutchings orchestrated with a group of South African jazz musicians he’s long admired, including trumpeter-to-watch Mandla Mlangeni. The work is steeped in the flair of South African jazz masters, but also borrows in structure from Caribbean calypso, central African folk and Southern African Nguni music. All of the material was recorded in a single day.
“I see energy as being a form of wisdom to be passed down through the ages,” reflects Hutchings after years on the London jazz circuit. “When we study the music, the lives, the words of our master musicians we obtain a glimpse of that artist’s essential energy source. This is the core vitality of the individual which leads them to utilise the musical specifics of their chosen genre in a way that mirrors their inner source of power. This is an intuited wisdom that’s handed to us from the legacies of our elders.”
Wisdom of Elders is out via Brownswood today, order your copy here and take a closer look at the LP and tracklist below:
03. The Observer
04. The Sea
05. The Observed
08. Give Thanks