ORGAN THING: A rather impressive first taste of the new Seed Ensemble album, don’t rush it though, give it a minute to kick in, that jazz is fluid but do wait…


This Organ Thing of The Day thing then, some days it needs to be an in-depth thing, on other more fractured days when there’s things to be getting on with and places to be and art to be juggled and artists to be herded then it might just be something heard or seen and then quickly shared, like today for example, today there is very little time for anything but a quick share of this rather impressive first taste of the new Seed Ensemble album, don’t you rush it though, do give it a minute to kick in, that jazz is fluid but do wait until the voice kicks in and adds an extra dimension…


Here;s the “stolen” lazy cut ‘n paste, yeah, I know, I should write a proper piece, time is of the essence, here’s the hype from the record label or the band and their people, from someone anyway….

Cassie Kinoshi’s Seed Ensemble have announced a new album called ‘Driftglass’, Afronaut’ is taken from ‘Driftglass’, the album is released 8th February on jazz re:freshed

“They break, the tide pulls the pieces back and forth over the sandy bottom, wearing the edges, changing their shape. Sometimes chemicals in the glass react with chemicals in the ocean to change the colour. Sometimes veins work their way through in patterns like snowflakes, regular and geometric; others, irregular and angled like coral. When the pieces dry, they’re milky. Put them in water and they become transparent again.”Driftglass, from “Driftglass”, 1971

Emerging London-based collective SEED Ensemble, are pleased to announce the release of their long awaited debut album ‘Driftglass’,

Formed in 2016, SEED Ensemble is a ten-piece project led by composer, arranger and alto saxophonist Cassie Kinoshi. Already a giant on the UK jazz scene, she is known for her work with jazz septet, Nerija, (Parliamentary Jazz Award Winners 2017, Best Newcomer) and afrobeat jazz group, Kokoroko. A BMus Hons Composition graduate from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance, she is currently Mercury Musical Developments’ and Musical Theatre Network’s most recent Cameron Mackintosh Resident Composer Scheme recipient.

Combining jazz with inner-city London, West African and Caribbean influenced groove, Cassie Kinoshi’s SEED Ensemble explores a blend of genres through both original compositions and arrangements. “SEED Ensemble is my way of celebrating the vibrant and distinctive diversity that has significantly influenced what British culture has become over the centuries. I also hope that aspects of the music succeed in planting a “seed” of awareness within the current climate of our society. It’s important to me that I shine a light on political subject matter which is often disregarded by the masses and highlight what it means to exist as a young Black British citizen today”, says Kinoshi.

Projecting this new musical vision are some of London’s most up-and-coming young jazz musicians essential to the modern identity of British jazz including tuba player Theon Cross, trumpeter Sheila Maurice-Grey, tenor saxophonist Chelsea Carmichael and one of London’s leading guitarists, Shirley Tetteh.

Across ‘Driftglass’, Kinoshi embraces styles both past and present to create something that we can call modern. Band members cut across race and gender with original compositions inspired by the social issues of our times. Compositions such as ‘The Darkies’ are a take-that riposte to a resurgence in 1950s-style racism while ‘W A K E (for Grenfell)’ featuring Cherise Adams-Burnett on vocals, is dedicated to Grenfell Tower’s victims of social schism and starts with the band repetitively intoning the words of a poem by Harlem Rennaissance poet Langston Hughes “Tell all my mourners to mourn in red, cause there ain’t no sense in my bein’ dead.”

On ‘Driftglass’, Kinoshi adds, “‘Driftglass’ takes its name from a collection of short stories of the same name by African-American science-fiction author Samuel R. Delaney. The quotation can be interpreted as a beautiful metaphor for how fluid and intimate improvised music is. I find it extraordinarily beautiful how environment, emotion, performance space and audience directly impacts how one composition can evolve, grow, ebb and flow over time.”

Alongside working frequently within the world of jazz music and live performance, Kinoshi has also written for short film and videogame as well as professional classical ensembles such as the Benyounes Quartet and members of the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Notable artists Kinoshi has worked alongside include Dele Sosimi, Zoe Rahman, Nathaniel Facey, Yazz Ahmed and Laura Jurd. In 2012, Kinoshi was shortlisted for the BBC Young Composer of the Year award and was nominated for Jazz FM Breakthrough Act of the Year 2016 as part of the ensemble Nerija. Her compositions and performances have been showcased on BBC Radio 3 (Jazz on 3/Late Junction) and at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance (Bonnie Bird Theatre). Outside of theatre, Kinoshi has written and arranged music for events such as Women of the World Festival 2017 (Royal Festival Hall), EFG London Jazz Festival 2011-17 (Barbican Centre/Cadogan Hall/South Bank Centre) and Felabration! 2016 (British Library). Kinoshi recently contributed to the BBC 4 documentary, ‘Jazzology with Soweto Kinch’ and is currently writing for the LSO Panufnik Scheme 2018-19.

Cassie Kinoshi’s SEED Ensemble will be performing material from ‘Driftglass’ at the album launch in Kings Place, London Friday 1st February.


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