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Thread: Kamasi Washington

  1. #1
    Member GolfWang's Avatar
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    Default Kamasi Washington

    Kamasi needs his own thread. I've been seeing him (and the crazy talented guys that he plays with) fairly regularly in LA over the past year or so and there's really just not much else in going on in music right now that is quite as exhilarating to me -in Jazz or any other genre.

    His debut album Epic is out on Brainfeeder on May 5th. The single is 14 minutes long and without question the best piece of music I've heard this year.

    (Jeff Weiss did a nice job encapsulating his brilliance here: http://www.passionweiss.com/2015/03/...si-washington/)

    GV needs to bring Kamasi Washington and the West Coast Get Down to Coachella one of these days.


    Disclaimer: He and his band play at Piano Bar in Hollywood every Wednesday and Friday night. However, unfortunately Piano Bar seems to have pissed somebody off at the fire department because the last time I tried to go there was a line of about 50 people waiting to enter while the bar itself was, at most, 20% full. The door guy told me they've been getting hassled by the fire marshall and that they're being held to a strict maximum number of patrons. Sadly this means that, as far as I can tell, Kamasi and his band are playing to mostly empty rooms these days. I haven't been back in over a month because I was so disappointed last time, but hopefully it's either being resolved or will be soon.
    Last edited by GolfWang; 05-04-2015 at 11:07 AM.

  2. #2
    Coachella Junkie Spooks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Looking forward to this lp for sure!

    11/30 Dinosaur Jr. @ Irving Plaza
    12/2 Booka Shade @ Masonic
    12/2 Bas Mooy/UVB/Volvox @ Unter
    12/3 Convextion/Antenes @ Trans Pecos
    12/3 Giorgio Gigli @ The Gateway


    Quote Originally Posted by guedita View Post
    Help me decide what to wear to the show I'm going to tonight, everyone. I'll post pics of my six different potential outfits in a second.
    Quote Originally Posted by bmack86 View Post
    What is it about a band you love unconditionally that makes you adore them? Otherwise I'm going to just rip all over your shitty taste in bad bands.

  3. #3
    Coachella Junkie Spooks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Bump! LA kids, go see him at The Regent Theater tonight!

    11/30 Dinosaur Jr. @ Irving Plaza
    12/2 Booka Shade @ Masonic
    12/2 Bas Mooy/UVB/Volvox @ Unter
    12/3 Convextion/Antenes @ Trans Pecos
    12/3 Giorgio Gigli @ The Gateway


    Quote Originally Posted by guedita View Post
    Help me decide what to wear to the show I'm going to tonight, everyone. I'll post pics of my six different potential outfits in a second.
    Quote Originally Posted by bmack86 View Post
    What is it about a band you love unconditionally that makes you adore them? Otherwise I'm going to just rip all over your shitty taste in bad bands.

  4. #4
    The Encyclopedia bmack86's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    The album is just a mind-melter. I thought the players sounded very familiar, so I looked, and most of these guys were the Young Jazz Giants. I saw them at Arthurfest back in 2005, and they fucking destroyed the place. Closed with a cover of Ornette Coleman's Lonely Woman with a guest trombone covering Don Cherry's parts. It was wicked.
    Quote Originally Posted by canexplain View Post
    Remember Hitler? I don't but here we are again .. cr****

  5. #5
    Coachella Junkie Spooks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington



    Good news: Kamasi Washington - THE EPIC Album Release Show that took place at The Regent in Los Angeles will be broadcast in it's entirety by NPR / NPR Music on May 27th


    http://www.npr.org/event/music/40206...pic-in-concert

    11/30 Dinosaur Jr. @ Irving Plaza
    12/2 Booka Shade @ Masonic
    12/2 Bas Mooy/UVB/Volvox @ Unter
    12/3 Convextion/Antenes @ Trans Pecos
    12/3 Giorgio Gigli @ The Gateway


    Quote Originally Posted by guedita View Post
    Help me decide what to wear to the show I'm going to tonight, everyone. I'll post pics of my six different potential outfits in a second.
    Quote Originally Posted by bmack86 View Post
    What is it about a band you love unconditionally that makes you adore them? Otherwise I'm going to just rip all over your shitty taste in bad bands.

  6. #6
    Coachella Junkie bballarl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    This totally fucking rips. Kept meaning to check him out since everyone has been raving about him. The hype is justified.

  7. #7
    Coachella Junkie WhyTheLongFace's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Amazing music on here. I still need to finish it all the way through but the 1st half is killer
    Voted Best Black Board Member 2010

  8. #8
    Coachella Junkie getbetter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Well now I need to figure out when I can come down to the Piano Bar.
    Translation

    Last.fm



    ?????(with Mad Alchemy) @ Baby's All Right 01/08/16


    Quote Originally Posted by jackstraw94086 View Post
    I want to punch that woman.

  9. #9
    Coachella Junkie Spooks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington


    11/30 Dinosaur Jr. @ Irving Plaza
    12/2 Booka Shade @ Masonic
    12/2 Bas Mooy/UVB/Volvox @ Unter
    12/3 Convextion/Antenes @ Trans Pecos
    12/3 Giorgio Gigli @ The Gateway


    Quote Originally Posted by guedita View Post
    Help me decide what to wear to the show I'm going to tonight, everyone. I'll post pics of my six different potential outfits in a second.
    Quote Originally Posted by bmack86 View Post
    What is it about a band you love unconditionally that makes you adore them? Otherwise I'm going to just rip all over your shitty taste in bad bands.

  10. #10
    Member GolfWang's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    ^^^all improvised btw

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    NPR footage of the Epic release concert:
    http://www.npr.org/event/music/40206...ntent=20150528

  12. #12
    Coachella Junkie stinkbutt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Why do people feel this is such an easier more enjoyable jazz record than anything else? It seems like the same old self indulgent shit but with more synths imo
    DREAM BIGGER

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Quote Originally Posted by stinkbutt View Post
    Why do people feel this is such an easier more enjoyable jazz record than anything else? It seems like the same old self indulgent shit but with more synths imo
    I don't think it is. At least not for me. I do listen to a lot of jazz, although mostly older stuff, but I will say that in terms of contemporary jazz music this is one of the very few records (maybe the only one?) that has connected with me in the same way as some of the classic bebop/hardbop style music of the 40's, 50's and 60's. I certainly wouldn't describe The Epic as an "easy" listen, especially for those who aren't already fans of the genre. Maybe it is though? I don't know.

    Also, I could be mistaken, but the record doesn't have hardly any "synths". I'm actually struggling to think of any song on the album where a synth is featured prominently in any way.

  14. #14
    Coachella Junkie stinkbutt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Shit you're right. I was thinking of the chorus parts that sound like they're coming from a keyboard. Those obviously aren't synths and I'm obviously not very good at saying what I mean
    DREAM BIGGER

  15. #15
    The Encyclopedia bmack86's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Dave, I don't recall if, during our Kamasi discussions, you mentioned whether or not you're a jazz fan, but I think you inadvertently pick up on why I (at least) am such a fan of the record. I don't find it to be an innovative record, but rather "the same old self indulgent shit" in a way that modern jazz artists just don't hit. The album reminds me of Coltrane, Coleman, Sanders, et al in the passion and feel behind the playing as much as in the song structures and melodies. Anyone can overblow a note, but it takes a special reedsman to do it at the right time, with the right force, to express a certain anxiety or sadness or anger. I feel like Kamasi and crew have a great control of the whole post-bob/free vocabulary, and they use it to express themselves very well. My favorite jazz performances tend to be ones where you feel like you can hear the soloists or the group channeling their emotions into the performance, whether it be Coltrane's doleful Alabama, Albert Ayler's manic and paranoid Ghosts or Kamasi Washington's fierce, passionate and driving Changing of the Guard. There are moments where the horns on each song evoke a human emotion in the way that few artists can do successfully. That's what keeps drawing me back to this rather than Joshua Redman or the Marsalis guys; they make jazz alive and full of emotion, rather than like a painting framed on a wall in a museum.
    Quote Originally Posted by canexplain View Post
    Remember Hitler? I don't but here we are again .. cr****

  16. #16
    Coachella Junkie stinkbutt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    I like some jazz. Mainly entry level stuff.

    Your assessment is fair, and the album is quite good. It had just seemed like the concensus was that this could be a gateway to jazz for the kids, and I really don't see it as that.
    DREAM BIGGER

  17. #17
    The Encyclopedia bmack86's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    I would love for that to be true, just because it's good. But the connections are, more than anything, what are gonna get the album outside of jazz circles. Kendrick helps his friends and all that.
    Quote Originally Posted by canexplain View Post
    Remember Hitler? I don't but here we are again .. cr****

  18. #18
    ankle biter guedita's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    The Kamsai album actually reminded me a lot of Coltrane and Sanders my ex boyfriend used to listen to. It's good, but it's only groundbreaking to those with little jazz experience.
    12/2: Terry Malts @ The Hideout
    12/10: Tama Sumo, Dorisburg, Prins Thomas @ Public Works
    12/11: Moderat @ The Fox Oakland
    12/12: Prism Tats @ Brick and Mortar
    12:17-18: Day for Night
    12/22: Get Real @ The Midway
    1/19: Woods @ Sweetwater Music Hall


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    God is very clearly a toaster.

  19. #19
    Coachella Junkie greghead's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    I still need to listen to this record. I am very excited.

    Bryan, that assessment is beautiful and perfect. That's exactly how I feel about those guys as well. I've been playing the shit out of Karma recently and Kamasi Washington will fit perfectly into my day off on Monday. And I'm a liiiittle sad inside that I sold you that Coltrane/Cherry jam. That record is hotfire.
    Quote Originally Posted by thelastgreatman View Post
    No Taj Mahal or Ry Cooder? Fuck this thread.

  20. #20
    The Encyclopedia bmack86's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    It really is. I may throw that on tonight.

    Any word on the record release for the album?
    Quote Originally Posted by canexplain View Post
    Remember Hitler? I don't but here we are again .. cr****

  21. #21
    business time tessalasset's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Just saw him on Thursday at the Blue Whale! I had a ticket for the Regent show, too, but I was too sick to go and it breaks my heart. Thursday's show was fantastic. I'm pretty new to jazz and I really like their stuff.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ardentbiscuit View Post
    This is the equivalent of musical water boarding.

  22. #22
    Loveable Curmudgeon TallGuyCM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    I finally sat down with this album today. I had been avoiding it altogether up until now, not wanting to hear it in bits and pieces before listening to it as a whole. I wasn't wild about the four tracks with vocals, and feel they brought the overall quality of the album down, but aside from that it's absolutely stellar. It actually felt like Coltrane was playing on some of the songs, especially early on.
    5/22 - The Cure - Hollywood Bowl
    5/31 - Brian Jonestown Massacre - Teragram (?)
    6/07 - Chelsea Wolfe - Teragram (?)
    6/14 - Silver Apples - Troubadour
    6/16 - John Carpenter - Orpheum


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  23. #23
    The Encyclopedia bmack86's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Quote Originally Posted by TallGuyCM View Post
    I finally sat down with this album today. I had been avoiding it altogether up until now, not wanting to hear it in bits and pieces before listening to it as a whole. I wasn't wild about the four tracks with vocals, and feel they brought the overall quality of the album down, but aside from that it's absolutely stellar. It actually felt like Coltrane was playing on some of the songs, especially early on.
    The vocal tracks have grown on me quite a bit. Those first few songs do have a STRONG Coltrane when Kamasi is blowing, but it doesn't feel like an imitation so much as an embodiment of his playing style and character.
    Quote Originally Posted by canexplain View Post
    Remember Hitler? I don't but here we are again .. cr****

  24. #24
    Loveable Curmudgeon TallGuyCM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Oh definitely. I didn't mean that as a bad thing at all.
    5/22 - The Cure - Hollywood Bowl
    5/31 - Brian Jonestown Massacre - Teragram (?)
    6/07 - Chelsea Wolfe - Teragram (?)
    6/14 - Silver Apples - Troubadour
    6/16 - John Carpenter - Orpheum


    last.fm, if you care

    Twitter, if you dare

  25. #25
    old school ods..'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    The vocal tracks are some of my favorites.

  26. #26
    Dark Lord mountmccabe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    I just finished my first play through of the album as a whole and there was a lot I liked.

    My first step for going forward with this will be putting together an instrumental playlist for the album. I want to spend more time with the choral and vocal soloist parts of the album but they're what kept me away after partial listens and on this first full listen they kept breaking up the flow for me (though with an album this long that may be a good thing).
    I don't think I'm hosting a 2016 collaborative playlist.

  27. #27
    old school nosurprises12's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Something else you could try in terms of breaking it up a bit is to go disc by disc, as technically it's split across three:

    Disc 1 (titled "The Plan") is "Change of the Guard"--"The Rhythm Changes"
    Disc 2 ("The Glorious Tale") is "Miss Understanding"--"The Magnificent 7"
    Disc 3 ("The Historic Repetition") is "Re Run Home"--"The Message"
    Last edited by nosurprises12; 07-02-2015 at 01:52 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by roberto73 View Post
    I'd contribute to this discussion but I'm still busy reminiscing about the halcyon days of punk. You know, the mid-90s.
    Quote Originally Posted by getbetter View Post
    poor spook poop

  28. #28
    business time tessalasset's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    I'm slightly obsessed with Kamasi and his whole crew the West Coast Get Down right now. So far in the last month I've seen him play four times with the gang and I saw Thundercat solo headline once. Missed their show last night at Low End Theory cause I couldn't get in and that one especially hurt cause Thundercat showed up which is becoming more and more rare. Saw Terrace Martin's headlining show on Monday which was just stellar. I'm so fucking happy to be living in Los Angeles right now. I can't get enough of this shit.

    Kamasi's going on tour this year and y'all should see him if you can. He's insane. http://kamasiwashington.com/events/


    Quote Originally Posted by Ardentbiscuit View Post
    This is the equivalent of musical water boarding.

  29. #29

    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Show at low end last night was amazing!

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Kamasi Washington

    Quote Originally Posted by tessalasset View Post
    I'm slightly obsessed with Kamasi and his whole crew the West Coast Get Down right now. So far in the last month I've seen him play four times with the gang and I saw Thundercat solo headline once. Missed their show last night at Low End Theory cause I couldn't get in and that one especially hurt cause Thundercat showed up which is becoming more and more rare. Saw Terrace Martin's headlining show on Monday which was just stellar. I'm so fucking happy to be living in Los Angeles right now. I can't get enough of this shit.

    Kamasi's going on tour this year and y'all should see him if you can. He's insane. http://kamasiwashington.com/events/
    Yeah, the record is amazing but seeing them live is often revelatory. That's what initially made me such a fan. I've taken friends who have no interest in jazz to see them and they always come away in awe. I really regret not making it to Low End last night.

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