New York City jazz ensemble Onyx Collective returns with a new single from the band’s forthcoming Manhattan Special: Onyx Collective Plays Rodgers & Hart / Rodgers & Hammerstein project by teaming up with Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter Kelsey Lu for “When or Where.”
Comprised of saxophonist and occasional vocalist Isaiah Barr, drummer Austin Williamson, keyboardist Joshua Benitez, guitarist Jack Guliemetti, bassists Felix Pastorius and Spencer Murphy, and upright bass players Dean Torrey and Walter Stinson, Onyx Collective has shaped their sound from each member’s experiences throughout the endless neighborhoods of New York City. After the ongoing three-part Lower East Suite series, and a new take on the ever-classic “My Funny Valentine” featuring Nick Hakim on Valentine’s Day, the group is currently working their way through the catalogues of legendary songwriting duos Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II as well as Rodgers’ partnership with Lorenz Hart.
“Where or When” first appeared as part of Rodgers and Hart’s Babes in Arms musical and rose to fame once Dion and The Belmonts recorded a cover, which went to No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 back in January 1960. The pairing of Onyx Collective and Kelsey Lu creates a sprawling, hypnotic take on the iconic song with a vast string section that’s both modern and rooted in the original’s rich history. Onyx Collective also launched a limited edition apparel collection earlier today that’s now available on the group’s official wesbsite.
Listen to the full track below and be on the lookout for the group’s next project, Manhattan Special: Onyx Collective Plays Rodgers & Hart / Rodgers & Hammerstein to release in the near future. In more music news, watch Coldplay’s jubilant NPR Tiny Desk Concert Series performance where the group debuted a surprising rendition of Prince’s “1999.”