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Multi-instrumentalist, bandleader and composer Joey DeFrancesco Talks His 2017 ' Project Freedom' LP In An Exclusive Interview With Revive Music.

Source: Mack Avenue Recordings

Multi-instrumentalist, bandleader and composer Joey DeFrancesco trades his traditional trio lineup for a quartet on the 2017 full-length album, Project Freedom, out now via Mack Avenue Records. With his signature Hammond B3 organ at the foundation of each arrangement, DeFrancesco and his band The People stretch out across genres. Pulling from the tried and true spirituals of the church, the freedom songs of American folk, the abiding sorrow of the blues and the swing of straight ahead jazz, they combine their talents to create a sonic ode to spiritual uplift that resonates immediately and stands as a resounding call to arms in trying times. Joey DeFrancesco explains what Project Freedom is and how it came to be.

Revive Music: Project Freedom opens with “Imagine” (Prelude) — a pretty emphatic statement about the tone of the record. That moves into the title track, which references a somber spiritual (“Go Down Moses”) before the band essentially throws off a burden and breaks out. What discussions were you having with yourself at the inception of this project and what role did “Freedom Songs” of the past play in it?

Joey Defrancesco: Everything you just said. There’s no question about the times that we’re in and things that have been going for many years. Musicians always express themselves through song. In jazz, in particular, but really any improvised music. There’s a lot of emotion in it, so whatever you’re doing and whatever’s going on in your surroundings, comes out in your music. Being traveling musicians, we’ve gone to places that were very risky to go to at certain times and we went anyway. Everywhere we play, no matter what was going on, people get the music and they feel it. They feel the sincerity of our wish peace and unity for everyone through the music. Nowadays, with much more of a public eye on things and the internet making people even more aware of all of the horrible things that are happening, I felt like I could take it a step further to bring more awareness and attention to the fact that people should be living in unity and peace with respect for one another.

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