Friday, May 3, 2013

Snarky Puppy - Thing of Gold/Young Stuff

Sounds Like: Tower of Power, Papa Grows Funk, Eric Krasno, An expanded jazz interpretation of C2C's "Happy Thing"

There is such simple joy in finding new music. Whether it be new or old, live or recorded, a first hand discovery or one through the radio, that feeling when you instantaneously "get it" (or call out someone for "gettin' it")  is just amazing. I am happy to announce that I did not come across the discovery of the Snarky Puppy on my own, although the jealous hipster in me wishes I had. This one came from a co-worker, who heard it from his girlfriend, who heard about them through another friend of hers (aren't social networks great). The great thing here is that my co-worker, Cale, sent this over to me just because he had recently found out that I like jazz and "thought I might like it" (when you listen to the below recordings, you will see just how far we stretched that word). My point is that discovery process is constant. Even when you seem to be inactive, you can still become an active participant in someone else's discovery process, just as I was in Cale's.

Getting back to the music...

No matter if you are a pure jazz fan or not, you owe to yourself to give the following recordings a listen. Not only does Michael League, the band's composer/arranger/bassist/guitarist, continues to push the boundaries of jazz fusion into interesting and soulful places, but he's also got a passion for doing really cool things like recording an entire jazz fusion album live in front of an audience in a Brooklyn performance space. "Thing of Gold" is a 6 and half minute euphoric jazz build to glory incorporating distinct reggae, funk, and soul elements along the way. "Young Stuff" has got a little bit of a 'New Orleans' feel to it from the start and had me locked in on the the 2:00 minute mark with Cory Henry's stupefying organ solo. The song is capped off by the group's leader on a bass solo that might tie you in knots with the way he can make that instrument sound. You have got to check this out you guys. Oh, did I mention there were live horns here too. Let me know what you think!

Shout out to Cale Turner for this one!