Kendrick Scott Oracle makes Blue Note debut with “We Are the Drum”

by LP Green, II

On September 25, Kendrick Scott Oracle will release We Are The Drum, the remarkable Blue Note debut of a band founded by drummer Kendrick Scott who over the last decade has powered groups led by Terence Blanchard, Herbie Hancock, Charles Lloyd, Kurt Rosenwinkel & Kurt Elling, as well as the Blue Note 75th Anniversary all-star band. The album’s title track is available now as a single to download or stream.

In addition to touring with Lloyd, Elling, Luciana Souza and trumpeter Avishai Cohen this Fall, Scott will be out with Oracle performing music from the new album at the Jazz Standard in NYC (September 22-23) and on the Blue Note Jazz at Sea cruise aboard the Queen Mary 2 (October 29-November 5). Oracle will also embark on tours of Asia and Mexico, and make appearances in Scott’s hometown of Houston, Texas (November 14), as well as west coast engagements including SFJAZZ (December 5). Further dates will be announced shortly.

“Kendrick Scott has become the Art Blakey, Elvin Jones, and Tony Williams of his generation,” says Blanchard. “He’s a brilliant mind bringing innovation to the music at the same time as creating a safe place for young talent to develop and grow.”

Oracle features a top notch collective of young musicians capable of a wide range of musical expression: saxophonist John Ellis, keyboardist Taylor Eigsti, guitarist Mike Moreno, and bassist Joe Sanders. Each of Oracle’s members has a songwriting credit on We Are The Drum, including six compelling new originals by Scott. The 11-track album also includes a cover of the Flying Lotus song “Never Catch Me” as well as a feature spot for the vocalist Lizz Wright who co-wrote “This Song In Me” with the album’s producer Derrick Hodge.

Although the session is led by the drummer, Scott makes clear that “it’s not a percussion centered recording. Everybody is invested in it in a different way. Everybody contributed. The accent is on ‘we’ in the title. There is a sense of community in how it was created and how we work together. There is a lot of space for each player to have their say.”

The track listing for We Are The Drum is as follows:

  1. We Are The Drum (Kendrick Scott/Derrick Hodge/Michael Moreno/Taylor Eigsti/John Axson Ellis/Joseph Sanders)
  2. Make Believe (John Axson Ellis)
  3. This Song In Me feat. Lizz Wight (Derrick Hodge/Lizz Wright)
  4. Mantra (Kendrick Scott)
  5. The Long Shadow (Kendrick Scott)
  6. Never Catch Me (Steven Bingley-Ellison)
  7. Touched By An Angel (For Maya) (Kendrick Scott)
  8. Milton (John Axson Ellis)
  9. Lotus (Michael Moreno)
  10. Synchrony (Kendrick Scott)
  11. Touched By An Angel (Kendrick Scott)


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