Zara McFarlane, All Africa 10” Single, Brownswood Recordings
Brownswood Recordings & Arc Records – is the independent record label founded by DJ, record collector and broadcaster Gilles Peterson. Founded in 2006, it’s a platform for new artists to grow, and a space for established acts to break with tradition. An outlet for the eclectic breadths of Gilles’ taste as a DJ and collector, its early output broached new orchestral arrangements, full-throttle Japanese jazz and club-rooted soul music. Over a decade later, that inclusive attitude continues. Its output spans the new jazz messengers of the UK underground, fresh tangents in hip-hop-tipped-beatmaking, and snapshots of Havana’s burgeoning club culture.
Arc Records is Gilles new label founded in 2019. Selecting reissues from his personal archive (some 50,000 plus records) shines a light on these magnificent records and the stories that brought them to us.
Gilles is the source of so many of our musical influences and memorable restaurant moments. His long search for the elusive Tam Tam Tam album ended at Brawn after Egon & Madlib hand delivered a copy they had found on a recent digging trip to São Paulo. He has been a huge support to us and we have collaborated on a number of projects from the ‘Brawnswood’ tent at the inaugural We Out Here Festival to 2 editions of the Ricci festival in Catania, Sicily.
Zara Mcfarlane, All Africa
On ‘All Africa’, Zara McFarlane re-casts a landmark track by Max Roach. Taken from We Insist!, his 1960 album born of the US’ then-ascendant Civil Rights Movement, it saw avant-garde jazz used as vehicle for protest. With Roach and vocalist Abbey Lincoln at its core, it nodded to the growing independence movements then emerging in several African nations. The original track’s celebration of the present, past and future of Africa feels as relevant now as it did in 1960.
Taking the original’s all-out, percussive trip into a looser, more softly mesmerising kind of territory, this new version combines pulsing rhythm with a brighter musicality. The Alternate Take, meanwhile, follows a more groove-oriented direction. Punctuated by bursts of horns and a foot-tapping, syncopated rhythm, it hints at a globally-interconnected spirit.
Zara McFarlane – Vocals
Nathaniel Cross – Trombone
Moses Boyd – Drums
Jay Darwish – Upright and Electric Bass
Ashley Henry – Keys
Junior Alli-Balogun – Percussion
Binker Golding – Tenor Saxophone
Produced by Moses Boyd
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