The Souljazz Orchestra
- label:Strut Rec !K7
- gender:male, female
- instrumentation:instrumental, vocal
- artist submitted by:
Territory: Germany / Austria / Switzerland
Period: 17. - 30.10.2012
Album Release: Solidarity (Strut / K7 17.09.12)
Since their creation in Ottawa, Canada, back in 2002, the Souljazz Orchestra have become one of the most potent bands in their field. Drawing on the rough, raw grooves of the '60s and '70s and effortlessly fusing soul, jazz, afro and latin rhythms within their music, the group have moved forward the blueprint of Fela, Fania and the funk in entirely new ways, while keeping the vital analogue grit intact.
10 years anniversary
Now celebrating their 10th year, The Souljazz Orchestra continue their unrivalled run of fine albums. Breaking through on Toronto label Do Right, 'Freedom No Go Die' (2006, featuring their huge single 'Mista President') and 'Manifesto' (2008) set the bar high. 2010's 'Rising Sun', their first for Strut, was recognised as a landmark in deep, spiritual Afro jazz. Meanwhile, as a live unit, the Orchestra have become an in-demand fixture at venues and festivals worldwide and successfully toured the US for the first time during 2012.
Now they return at full throttle in September 2012 with 'Solidarity', a new collaborative album featuring a range of unique artists from their country's vibrant underground groove scene. Rooted in rhythmically rich musical traditions of the past, the collective have kept their eyes on the future, pushing the boundaries of soul, jazz and tropical styles with a set of heavyweight new songs, unified by a powerful message of positive social change.
After the success of their last record, the all-acoustic, instrumental outing, 'Rising Sun', the Orchestra returns to electric, vocal-driven compositions on 'Solidarity', inviting in a selection of singers with whom they have collaborated at different times over the last decade. Hailing from diverse musical backgrounds, the guests were the catalyst for memorable artistic exchange, allowing each party to feed off the other and venture beyond their usual realm of experience into fresh musical territory.
The compositions that arose from the sessions are in a variety of Afro, Latin and Caribbean styles, all connected by a consistent thread of North American soul and jazz sensibilities. Featuring lyrics sung in English, Spanish, Portuguese and Wolof (with borrowings from French and Arabic), the songs touch on subjects ranging from social and political issues to relationships and traditional folk tales. The plugged-in direction of the new album also provided the band with an excuse to dig out some of their dusty, forgotten electric instruments from the attic: an ancient vibrato-heavy transistor organ, pawn shop hollow-body electric guitars, a warbling psychedelic tape-echo machine, a cavernous surf-guitar spring reverb unit, even an old Italian-made Elka electric piano rescued from a garbage can.