Walter Kemp 3 BLACK WHOLE
When do we hear silence, and what should a sound, sound like? Who mandates freedoms within the form, and when does recapitulation create something new? These, and other questions are the impetus for the Black Whole.Following its debut, sold-out festival appearance, this intensely dynamic ensemble was awarded a grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts. The Black Whole features pianist & bandleader Walter Kemp 3, violinist Scott Tixier, bassist Rishon Odel, Brent Birckhead on woodwinds, and Allan Mednard on drums.
Black Whole---meaning the "sum of" all Black music. A gathering of 5 musical souls, engendered to paying homage to the ancestral sounds. The instrumentation of violin with loops, flute, clarinet, alto sax, drums, Rhodes, organ, electric & upright bass brings fresh arrangements that have reimagined sound explorations. The ensemble has an ever-evolving style, delving deep within themselves to seamlessly reconnect jazz to its roots, while consciously and simultaneously working to uproot it. The community engagement activities being planned correspond with Juneteenth Festival celebrations at significant port cities, Confederate battlegrounds, and underground Railroad locations from the southeast to the Great Lakes, and into Canada, where freedom was found for many African-Americans once they crossed those waters. In keeping with the ensemble's free, Afro-futurist identity, various modes of travel, including trains, will serve as a central feature and "go-to" business for multi-destination travel along the most popular route lines. Historic stops include the performance venue in Virginia (located in the newly-revitalized Scott's Edition, which lies at the cusp of urban collegiate life, a largely ignored historically Black neighborhood --including a historic slave hold-- and Richmond's historic streetcar suburbs), Richmond's Shockoe Bottom; a once busy slave auction block, NYC's Seneca Village, Buffalo/Niagara's Underground Railroad, and Canada's Underground Railroad freedom trail.