Imagine a humid summer night and the mysterious coziness of an old cemetery turned concert venue. An intimate space with dimmed red lights, that serves as the perfect setting for a magical experience. A crowd of young and old, eagerly waiting to be astonished.
On Monday, jazz trumpeter Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah came to Berlin to perform an array of songs from his newly released album Ruler Rebel. A masterpiece created the celebrate the 100th anniversary of the first jazz record in 1917. An album where every note counts. Where a flute solo isn’t just a flute solo, the keys aren’t just melodies and the trumpet lines don’t merely satisfy the ear. On Ruler Rebel, every note played carries layers of emotions. Dissatisfaction, repression, joy and passion are translated into capturing melodies that travel straight to your soul.
Ruler Rebel is a melting pot of a variety of music styles, such as New Orleans funk and trap; all blended together to sound as one. And that’s exactly the message Scott wants to spread to us humans. That although we are all walking different paths of life, our hearts are in all its simplicity still one and the same.
Scott’s music lifts you up and transports you to another level. Into a space that allows you to forget everything and everyone around you. An almost ecstatic, highly magical experience of ultimate presentness. It’s hard not to feel the heartfelt way Berklee alumni Lawrence Fields touches the keys, or the controlled and nearly perfect way 21-year-old Elena Pinderhughes controls her flute.
Though the level of artistry on stage is one thing to rave about, it’s Scott’s presence and good intentions that really stand out. In between songs he takes the time to share personal background stories on how the music is made. He uses the stage to remind his audience of what’s wrong with today’s society and how we can be better human beings. And lastly, he takes the time to introduce each band member in full detail, giving them the spotlight they deserve. And that shows me Christian Scott is not only an excellent musician but also an amazing person with his heart in the right place.