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Chris Dave and the Drumhedz

Chris Dave and the Drumhedz

by Chris DaveChris Dave


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Commencing with a takeoff scene that recalls that of Charles Earland's Leaving This Planet, Chris Dave's proper debut as a leader aspires to transport the listener. Likewise, a sense of escape was something the drummer, composer, and producer wanted to establish in L.A.'s Kingsize Soundlabs where, for a few weeks in 2015, he hosted and directed the 50-strong crew of instrumentalists and vocalists who comprise the Drumhedz. Taking into account the considerable overlapping personnel and an otherwise aesthetically similar variety of involved jazz, R&B, and hip-hop figures, Dave's debut prompts easy comparisons to contributor Robert Glasper's Black Radio sessions. Nonetheless, this is less an instance of "I got next" than the culmination of a three-decade career that has intersected with the players here (as well as gospel and pop artists ranging from Yolanda Adams and Justin Bieber). The core instrumental support for Dave is bassist Pino Palladino and guitarist Isaiah Sharkey. Keyboardist Cleo Sample and singer/songwriter Kendra Foster are among the variable cast that joins that trio, so the set unsurprisingly has the densely layered, spaced-out, and fiery qualities of D'Angelo's Black Messiah. Dave truly shows off only on the lone unoriginal cut, a robust version of Alan Pasqua's "Lady Jade" (misspelled "Lady Jane"), originally recorded by the New Tony Williams Lifetime. There are a couple off-the-cuff interludes, along with a polyrhythmic delight ("Dat Feelin'") with room to showcase Keyon Harrold's trumpet and piano and Marcus Strickland's bass clarinet and tenor sax. Those tracks excepted, the album is ultimately about songs, even when Dave's dubbed-out snares are ricocheting off the walls and the electronics are on the brink of haywire status. There are three stellar ballads: the aching Anna Wise and SiR duet "Job Well Done," Foster's psychedelic "Sensitive Granite," and Bilal and Tweet's steaming "Spread Her Wings." Additionally, there's the panoramic neo-Afrobeat jam "Black Hole," fronted by a typically ebullient Anderson Paak. In the steady rocking "Destiny N Stereo," Phonte, Elzhi, and Eric Roberson operate like a unified trio. The breezy "Atlanta, Texas," a conversation that includes Goapele, Rozzi Daime, and Shafiq Husayn, sounds like a trapdoor discovery from the latter's Dave-enhanced Shafiq En' A-Free-Ka. The ease with which the album can be enjoyed is all the more astonishing considering that it effectively applies and corrals input from so many of Dave's associates.

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Product Details

Release Date: 01/26/2018
Label: Blue Note Records
UPC: 0602537794409
catalogNumber: 002705302
Rank: 182398


  1. Rocks Crying
  2. Universal Language
  3. Dat Feelin'
  4. Black Hole
  5. 2n1
  6. Spread Her Wings
  7. Whatever
  8. Sensitive Granite
  9. Cosmic Intercourse
  10. Atlanta, Texas
  11. Destiny N Stereo
  12. Clear View
  13. Job Well Done
  14. Lady Jane
  15. Trippy Tipsy

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Chris Dave   Primary Artist,Flute,Percussion,Drums,Vocals
Ali Shaheed Muhammad   Vocals
Pino Palladino   Bass,Vocals
James Poyser   Piano,Keyboards
Stokley   Guitar
Wah Wah Watson   Guitar,Sitar
Andre Harris   Keyboards
Charmelle Cofield   Vocals
Aaron Draper   Percussion
R.C. Williams   Moog Bass
Marshall York   Vocals
Sy Smith   Vocals
Casey Benjamin   Vocals
Grégoire Maret   Harmonica
Kebbi Williams   Flute,Saxophone
Marcus Strickland   Bass,Clarinet,Bass Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Goapele   Vocals
Robert Glasper   Piano,fender rhodes
Luke Austin   Organ,Piano
Shafiq Husayn   Vocals
Miguel Atwood-Ferguson   Strings
Donald Rose   Vocals
Sharief Hobley   Vocals
Marcus Hodge   Organ
Isaiah Sharkey   Guitar
Keyon Harrold   Piano,Trumpet,Horn,Background Vocals
Rozzi Daime   Vocals,Spoken Word
Fin Greenall   Guitar
Michael Feingold   Celeste,Sitar,Glass
Nick Mcnack   Bass
Tim Stewart   Guitar
Darryl Farris   Vocals
Nicholas McNack   Bass
Marvin "Krndn" Jones   Vocals
Tiffany Gouché   Vocals
Chris Dave and the Drumhedz   Vocals
Jermaine Holmes   Vocals
Cleo Sample   Organ,Piano,Keyboards,fender rhodes,Moog Bass
Rozzi   Vocals
Leolin Dockins   Vocals
Kent Morrison   Vocals

Technical Credits

Pino Palladino   Composer
Alan Pasqua   Composer
James Poyser   Composer
Stokley   Composer
Anna Wise   Composer
Andre Harris   Composer
Eric Roberson   Composer
Charmelle Cofield   Composer
Glenn Piper   Sound Effects
Sy Smith   Composer
Casey Benjamin   Composer
Kebbi Williams   Composer
Robert Glasper   Composer
Shafiq Husayn   Composer
Bilal Oliver   Composer
Ben Kane   Engineer
Donald Rose   Composer
Phonte Coleman   Composer
Isaiah Sharkey   Composer
Keyon Harrold   Composer
Chris Dave   Composer,Sound Effects,Producer
Fin Greenall   Composer
Michael Feingold   Composer
Goapele   Composer
Tim Stewart   Composer
Darryl Farris   Composer
Brandon Anderson   Composer
Charlene Keys   Composer
Jae Barber   Executive Producer
Cleo Sample   Composer
Leolin Dockins   Composer
Jason Powers   Composer

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