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GRAMMY Award-winning pianist, producer, and composer Robert Glasper wears yet another hat as the creative and musical director for The Apollo Theater Presents AFROPUNK’s Unapologetically keep reading »

It didn’t take long for the Robert Glasper Experiment to return with the second round of what will hopefully become a series. Only 20 months keep reading »

As the release date for the Robert Glasper Experiment’s Black Radio 2 grows near, Glasper and his team at Blue Note Records have been dropping some exciting pieces of the project for our listening pleasure. While “Calls” featuring Jill Scott was the first single to be released from the record due out on October 29th, we now have an official music video from director Ace Norton featuring both Glasper and Scott.

Just when it seems the close of a whirlwind tour and Grammy win would allow Glasper and crew to relax … nope. Big news comes keep reading »

The Robert Glasper Experiment has announced the follow-up to their Grammy-award winning record Black Radio with Black Radio 2 coming out October 29th on Blue Note Records. With a core line-up of Glasper on piano, Derrick Hodge (peep Live Today) on bass, Casey Benjamin on vocoder and saxophone, and Mark Colenburg on drums (for his Experiment debut on record).

Jazz purists may be taken aback, but Glasper’s vision of melding the worlds of hip-hop, soul, and jazz is a thoughtful take on an idea that has been explored ad nauseum. Black Radio is Glasper’s vision of what the airwaves could sound like – a mixtape of sorts – that may not reignite a new movement to overtake popular radio as we know it today, but it’s a concept that should be applauded for a group of artists who believe in chops over charts.

What you hear in her voice is ancient and inexplicable. She channels grandmothers and griots to bring audiences to the precipice of tears as easily as she incites eruption. Erykah Badu takes stage as both installation art and high wire act. While she has not made a career of being boastful, it is very clear that the queen bee knows who she is. A combination of Abbey Lincoln, Billie Holiday, Chaka Khan, Parliament’s mother ship, and a Hendrix solo, Erykah Badu is the direct byproduct of a lineage preserved and most effectively expressed through song. A sociologist with a rolodex of great producers and an equally impressive catalog of hits, Badu sings a world based very closely upon the one she inhabits, but clearly thinks and aspires to a plane none of us will reach in this life. A voice as joyful as it is pained, her sound does less to rely on the ridiculous range that carries most vocalists, leaning instead on an awesome amount of versatility, unpredictability, and depth.

As the great voices of jazz and soul music are silenced, Erykah Badu – arguably the first successful mutation of both movements — could very well be the last of a dying breed. In an interview with music superstore, Amoeba, trumpeter Christian Scott may have said it best, “I always applaud her for her conviction because she’s such a great artist and really on a lot of levels I feel like she could be the last great jazz singer, which is kind of disheartening a little bit. But just her sensibilities – her ideas about music, how she approaches her music, the notes that she sings, her inflections; I think she’s really a huge light for us right now. Hopefully there will be someone that’ll come and grab the torch from her, but I don’t really hear it yet, so she’s the one right now.”