Jazz and funk legend Roy Ayers could just be the most sampled artist in hip-hop history. The vibraphone extraordinaire helped pioneer the acid jazz movement of the mid-1980s while simultaneously being known the world over as “The Godfather of Neo Soul.” He’s still going strong at 79 years young too. Today he returns with a new collaboration titled “Synchronize Vibration” featuring A Tribe Called Quest member Ali Shaheed Muhammad and renowned producer and composer Adrian Younge as part of the duo’s latest Jazz Is Dead endeavor.
The new album follows March 2020’s Jazz Is Dead, an eight track project that tapped Ayers for the first collaboration, “Hey Lover” as well as legends like Gary Bartz, Brian Jackson, João Donato and more. The pairing with Ayers was a natural one — his iconic “Daylight” track was the main sample on Tribe’s “Bonita Applebum” which Shaheed Muhammad was notably apart of. For the sequel, due out this Friday, June 19, the trio is off to a strong start with a nostalgic vibe throwing it back to a sound reminiscent of the 1970s. Ali Shaheed Muhammad detailed the project in a recent press release:
What is Jazz in 2020? I can answer that this way: jazz artists have not only been an inspiration that has shaped my development as a musician, but their music is deeply rooted into the foundation of the Hip-Hop culture. We have risen because their head nodding beats, lush chord progressions, soul ripping melodies and bellowing basslines have given us a musical back beat to poetically flow on until the break of dawn. To me, it’s all freedom music and Jazz Is Dead is motivating a movement.
Stream the single and be on the lookout for Jazz Is Dead 2 to release this Friday, June 19 via Jazz Is Dead. In more music updates, Beyoncé penned an open letter to Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron demanding justice for Breonna Taylor.