Track of the day: 'I Hold No Grudge'

One of the the most mesmerising singers live, and tapping into soul, the blues, a jazz sensibility can also identify via the essence of her artistry, extracting all the threads of connection that the Detroit legend creates, Bettye LaVette has …

Published: 22 Mar 2020. Updated: 3 months.

One of the the most mesmerising singers live, and tapping into soul, the blues, a jazz sensibility can also identify via the essence of her artistry, extracting all the threads of connection that the Detroit legend creates, Bettye LaVette has Blackbirds on Verve out in May.

At this terible time globally a lush grandly framed simmering blues treatment of Nina Simone song of magnanimity yet retained pride 'I Hold No Grudge' from the record is just the kind of feeling and truth that we all need and introduces the album. Bettye referring to Blackbirds tweets: ''It consists of songs that I heard while growing up, performed by women in jazz, blues, and R&B for whom I have great respect.''

Songs include classics identified with besides Nina Simone among others Billie Holiday, Nancy Wilson and Dinah Washington and are: 'I Hold No Grudge,' 'One More Song,' 'Blues For The Weepers,' 'Book Of Lies,' 'Romance In The Dark,' 'Drinking Again,' 'Strange Fruit,' 'Save Your Love For Me' and 'Blackbird.'

LaVette was to have been inducted in the Blues Hall of Fame this year. No matter, she throws down the gauntlet big time with this uncompromising track to show once again why she is so revered and still so relevant.

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Michael Olatuja returns with Lagos Pepper Soup

Listen to the bustling African and lush orchestrated jazz-rock blend of 'Soki' featuring today's Ella Fitzgerald Dianne Reeves and guitar great Lionel Loueke from the upcoming Whirlwind release by the stellar British-Nigerian bass guitarist Michael …

Published: 21 Mar 2020. Updated: 2 months.

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Listen to the bustling African and lush orchestrated jazz-rock blend of 'Soki' featuring today's Ella Fitzgerald Dianne Reeves and guitar great Lionel Loueke from the upcoming Whirlwind release by the stellar British-Nigerian bass guitarist Michael Olatuja.

Olatuja was significant in the early career of Soweto Kinch and appeared on his classic 2003 album Conversations with the Unseen.

The bass guitarist-composer has gigged extensively with Loueke and this blog heard the two of them for instance play at the Vortex in London back in 2012 on what was a memorable night, the place packed out and buzzing.

Lagos Pepper Soup is stuffed with guests who include: star MBASE-descended UK pianist Robert Mitchell who has a new solo piano out himself soon; sax icon Joe Lovano; swinging violin star Regina Carter; soulful Laura Mvula; and the great Beninoise musical icon, Angélique Kidjo.

Whirlwind have also signed, in a coup for the label, alto sax icon Rudresh Mahanthappa in his first album as a leader in five years, switching label from long time home ACT, and will issue ''Hero Trio''.

Photo of Michael Olatuja: Bandcamp.