June 19, 2024

4 Crying Out Loud, The Style Iso Wild: Mos Def and the Robert Glasper Experiment Zone Out In NYC



“The artist’s task is to save the soul of mankind;…

After Mos Def, equipped with a full orchestra, ripped Carnegie Hall last Saturday night– he wasn’t done–he took to Manhattan, for an after party/jam session with the Robert Glasper Experiment.

Igmar & The Cypher
warmed things up before Robert Glasper, accompanied by Casey Benjamin, drummer Chris “Daddy” Dave and Derrick Hodge on the bass, took the stage shortly before 2am and kept the party jamming through ’till 4am. The Glasper Experience brought their inherently unique, futuristic soul-sound to an intimate, comfortable crowd of roughly 300.

Robert and band mate Casey Benjamin, armed with keyboard, vocoder, and
sax, served as the catalysts and blasted-off on some intergalactic,
Space Odyssey-2008 shit! They brought that cosmic, urbanized thump.

Early on, the 4 piece set got into a little Herbie Hancock—“Come
Running to Me.” The 4-piece band became a 6-piece when joined by an
additional saxophonist and trumpet player. In between songs, drummer
Chris “Daddy” Dave provided percussive eruptions on the skins akin to
the chaos, unpredictable nature, and impact of Mount. St. Helens. They
offered an amplified version of (computer) Love Supreme that drove the
crowd insane. Mos laid in the cut on Robert’s right flank enjoying the The Experience’s acoustic soular system. He then sprang to center
stage, head bobbin’ locked into the perpetual groove theory.

Mos asked the question “What is life, without Dilla?” That set the tone
for the whole jam session. Dilla was Mos Definitely in the building
Saturday, June 28! The Robert Glasper Experiment performed spirited
versions of Jay Dee helmed Slum Village instant classics “Fantastic,”
and “Fall in Love.”

Casey Benjamin launched into “MC 2” during and Mos literally lost it.
Mos teased and accented with “Get up, Get up Get up!” There were times
when Mos stepped of stage to applaud and admire the creative genius of
the Rob G experiment. Mr. Glasper went ape-shit on the keys and zoned
out to the sickest, most soulfully esoteric places.

Mos seemed truly overwhelmed by the musicians’ drive and musical
prowess. It was pure electromagnetic soul. The band went deeper into
the Dilla catalog, later serving up “Thelonius,” which was aptly
complemented by a cyborg sax-solo from Benjamin. Check it out!

Mos summed the jam out with one phrase or —“4 crying out loud, the
style is wild!” He repeated the mantra intermittently through this
section of the jam session. The ensemble went on to offer an acoustic
blessing—this time in the form of a previously unreleased Dilla
interlude. Mos peppered the instrumental styling with slick freestyles.

The Robert Glasper Experiment raised the stakes with an intense,
unbridled offering of “Stakes is High.” Mos Def jumped in to deliver an
intensely urgent version of De La’s lyrics with clarity, passion, and
conviction. The horn section was so crisp, so live.

Next they segued to ‘Fall in Love.” Soul induced ecstasy. The band then
teased with the opening notes of “Umi Says,” and Mos launched into a
spirited, albeit abbreviated version of the cut. But the band played
on, the party aint’ over. The Glasper Experiment kept serving treats
slightly past 4 a.m.

After the exhaustive set, Mos did an impromptu meet and greet session
with adoring fans. It was a good look on all fronts. Okayplayer was in
the house.

– Mel Blunt

The amazing evening wouldn’t have come together without Revive Da Live. Over the past couple years, Revive Da Live has produced some of the most innovative shows to hit the stage where the pairing of hip-hop and jazz is nothing short of amazing. Most recently, Revive Da Live brought legendary MC Guru to the stage with Grammy Award winning artist Roy Hargrove. In the past, The Experiment has gone head to head with the Mighty Mos Def and Bilal among others. Keep your eyes open for more events from the Revive Da Live crew!  Go to www.myspace.com/revivedalive to read more about the movement, artists, events + more.

Photos by HUMANphotography

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“Already a wildly successful vocalist, musician, and actor, Mos Def has taken the next logical step with the creation of the Mos Def Band, rolling hip hop, jazz, and soul into one thrilling sound. Special guest Gil Scott-Heron first made his name decades ago with his no-nonsense anthem “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised.” Together, the two artists have created an evening of music and spoken words with material drawn from Miles Davis, Beyoncé, James Brown, and others.”

One of said “others” was Jay Electronica, who Mos gave serious props to with an acepella version of the second verse from “Act 1: Eternal Sunshine (The Pledge)” followed by the orchestra playing a piece of Michel Gondry‘s Eternal Sunshine composition.  Listen/Download and view the full photo gallery from Terrence Jennings below.

Mos Def  – Verse 2 from Jay Electronica’s “Act 1: Eternal Sunshine (The Pledge)”
Download/Listen: http://www.zshare.net/audio/14439663d264fdfc/

Props to Highvoltage, the hip-hop taper, who also posted a play-by-play of songs performed at the show on the boards.  Check back tomorrow for a write up and photos from the after-party.  If you dont already have “Act 1″… shame on you!  It’s only the finest piece of lyricism so far this decade, IMO.  Get it from FWMJ and please, pay attention.  Are you watching closely?

All photos © 2008 Terrence Jennings


Also watch these 3 vids of Mos at Carnegie Hall thanks to FWMJ and Rappers I Know.




Lastly (we swear), ANOTHER vid thanks to FWMJ, from Chris “Daddy” Dave and Friends feat. Mos Def performing “E=MC^2” off J Dilla’s The Shining, live from the official afterparty.


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