Angel Bat Dawid / REQUIEM FOR JAZZ
Composer, clarinetist, singer and educator Angel Bat Dawid announces the release of a new work, Requiem For Jazz. A 12-movement suite composed, arranged, and inspired in part by dialogue from Edward O. Bland’s 1959 film The Cry of Jazz, the album is a wide-ranging treatise on the African American story from one of its most astute narrators.
Itself an incisive critique of racial politics in the USA, The Cry of Jazz draws formal comparisons between the structure of jazz music and the African American experience – as one of freedom and restraint, of joy and suffering – that manifests in the triumph of spirit over the crushing prejudice of daily life.
Cutting together archive reels from Black neighborhoods in Chicago with live performance footage from Sun Ra and his Arkestra among others, the film remains a radical and prescient evocation of Black pride and its roots in the history of jazz, from spirituals to blues and beyond.