Written by Patrick Jarenwattananon from WBGO-FM
It started as a bongo beat — a nod to James Brown, just after his death in late 2006. Then came a few signature riffs. And an ecstatic response from the crowd. Before long, the Godfather of Soul was permanently embedded in the Evolution Ensemble’s repertoire. For leader Dee Alexander, a powerful and versatile vocalist, it was all part of the same continuum — as was the music of Jimi Hendrix, whose music carried the same revolutionary weight. Commissioned by the Jazz Institute of Chicago, Alexander and the expanded Evolution Arkestra sing the body electric in a free program on the city’s south side.
Timothy Powell/Metro Mobile Recording, recording and mix engineer; Dayna Calderón, field producer. Recorded at South Shore Cultural Center, Dec. 7, 2012. Special thanks to the Jazz Institute of Chicago and the Chicago Park District.