Legacy defines our roots. When one wishes to know their character and identity in this chaotic world, one often travels back to the point of their origin. While tradition offers a good medium like it did to Stephen in “A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man”, one often has to break away from it to create new definitions.
Robert Hebert seems to attempt the same in his ambitious project with Alexandra Jackson. The entrepreneur and music industry veteran has collaborated with the American singer to bring back Brazilian music to the mainstream.
Bringing Together Traditions
Through his new project, Alexandra Jackson: Legacy & Alchemy, Hebert aims to amalgamate traditional Brazilian music with 20th century American (Chicago) Jazz and funk. He attempts to re-initiate the dialogue between both the traditions and expose them beyond their regional listeners.
Brazilian music has been wooing audiences with its evergreen and timeless sound for centuries but in the wake of historical conflicts and modern digitisation, its reach has somehow declined and now the timeless tradition is no longer a mainstream genre. Hebert’s project then, is an attempt to revive audience’s interest in the classic and bring it to the mainstream.
To meet his objective, he has brought together Alexandra Jackson, the daughter of a remarkable, culturally and socially prominent African American family and significant musicians in Brazil who have proved their worth in the genres of samba, bossa nova and MBP.
Detailing Out the Singles
Jackson has just not “experimented” with the genres but also with the themes and language. The album “Legacy & Alchemy” comprises of English and Portuguese songs, both of which offer their unique flavour and add on to the diversity of the project.
The EP begins with the instrumental version of “Brazilica” and sets a tone for the upcoming singles in the album. For someone who might not have the context to the work, “Brazilica” offers a beautiful introduction to the album.
Through “Sonho Meu”, Jackson pays homage to 96-year-old samba grande dame and songwriter Doña Ivone Lara. She then presents us with a cheeky track “Girl from Ipanema” and subsequently offers us with more beautiful singles including “Our Time Now”. The EP culminates with the complete version of “Brazilica” created by Charles Stepney, Maurice White, and Ramsey Lewis.
“Creating” Authentic Touch with Pure Human Collaboration
The best about the album is the base of its creation. Explaining the idea behind collaborating with industry veterans and working closely with them, Hebert said,
“This is old school; I’m not interested in contemporizing this music with drum machines or sequencers. Computers cannot spiritually collaborate, interact, and connect in context and in real time with a human,” Hebert states. “I wanted to create an environment and commitment to the alchemy of the music, based on humans endeavoring to evolve the origins of the music. Brazilian, African and American music have a history of connection due to the slave trade, and that’s what creates this sense of musical integrity, what ties it all together. I let the music masters of Brazil and America contemporize the music with their insight, context and virtuosity.”
You can check out the documentaries tracing Jackson’s and musicians’ journey in creating the EP here:
You will also get a chance to catch up Jackson’s beautiful tribute to Doña Ivone Lara through the live performance of “Sonho Meu”.
So, what do you think about “Alexandra Jackson: Legacy & Alchemy”? Share your thoughts about the EP via tweet @Fuzzable.