Phil Ranelin & Wendell Harrison, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad


Jazz Is Dead • 2023

Awareness programme for young and old wearers of corduroy trousers: in our interview in 2021 Adrian Younge described himself as an activist. Thus he follows in the mammoth footsteps of, for example the two guests of honour from the 16th edition in the series, Phil Ranelin and Wendell Harrison: bringing about change on and off the jazz stages. It all started out of a certain self-interest with Ranelin and Harrison: If the record bosses take the butter off our bread that we as trombonist (Ranelin) and saxophonist (Harrison) put on there in the first place by playing, then let’s just take away what they can’t replace from »them up there«: the art, the skill, the talent, the love. In the early seventies, they, two Black men, established Tribe Records, one of the first artist-run record labels ever. The effect can still be felt today: As background, Tribe has ensured the life and survival of many labels. The fact that they were and still are excellent musicians is sometimes forgotten. Here they prove it with modal jazz arrangements that are both casual and cool. Peppered with Latin, rhythm & blues and spiritual moments, it is once more superb and proof that the work series title fortunately turns out to be wrong time and time again: Jazz is NOT dead!on, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad – JID016