blood drum spirit[wvc_playlist id=”5324″]
Massachusetts just came a little closer to West Africa. A whole village of percussion at his limbs, hartigan wrote the book on African drumming.
Leader Royal Hartigan ranks among the absolute greatest of contemporary percussionists. Thoroughly familiar with nearly the entire scope of world drumming and percussion musics–everything from Native American, to East Asian, to South Pacific, to West African, to South Indian–Hartigan has found a group of players entirely sympathetic to his massive world music canvas and produced a landmark disk. Of course, it helps that he has spent a lifetime studying and playing everything from bebop to funk to blues to gospel to reggae to hip-hop to African to Afro-Latin styles.
Seeking to situate a variety of native percussive musics in their natural state, yet overlain with a sophisticated jazz-world vibe, Hartigan has produced a disc of uncanny depth and spirituality.
Weilding a startling variety of percussion instruments, including drums, cymbals, rattles, gankogui, axatse, dondo, kulintang, babandir, agung, and dabakan, Hartigan weaves a thoroughly mesmeric sound signature, which his playing mates–Kevin McNeal (guitar), David Bindman (tenor and alto sax, flute, clarinet), and Wes Brown (contrabass)–completely lock into.