by Chris May
An all too rare event, an album from Byron Wallen. The British trumpeter is part of that cohort of musicians who immediately preceded, and continue to inspire, the young London rebels who have been renewing British jazz since around 2015. So, too, is this album's drummer, Rod Youngs. Youngs was born and raised in the US, where during the 1990s he was Gil Scott-Heron's drummer of choice. But since moving to London, Youngs has been aligned with contemporaries such as ...read more
by Bruce Lindsay
This album arose from a series of journeys--geographical, cultural and spiritual, but above all musical--undertaken by trumpeter and leader Byron Wallen, who first visited Morocco in 1996. The result of these journeys is a joyous and original record, fusing contemporary jazz with the music of the Gnawa musicians of Morocco.
The ten pieces of music on Meeting Ground tell the story of Bilal, a 6th century Abyssinian slave who was known for his beautiful singing. Released ...read more