Kamasi Washington Shares a Video for “Hub-Tones”

Heaven and Earth Out Now via Young Turks

Oct 18, 2018
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Jazz saxophonist Kamasi Washington released a double album, Heaven and Earth, back in June via Young Turks. It was our Album of the Week and it landed him on the cover of our current print issue. Now he has shared a video for the album's "Hub-Tones," Washington's take on the Freddie Hubbard classic. Jenn Nkiru directed the clip, which slowly and subtly zooms out and back in again on three women. Watch it below, followed by Washington's upcoming tour dates.

Washington had this to say about the video in a press release: "Hub-Tones is me trying to connect my ancestors via music. As an African-American, a lot of us don't know the country of our origin, that's why most of us take on the ideology of Pan-Africanism. I was trying to connect to my ancestors by connecting African rhythms with a Freddie Hubbard tune which gave me that connection in a different way."

Nkiru had this to say: "With the visual for 'Hub-Tones,' I wanted to invoke the immediate ecstatic connection it gave me: There's a traditional ceremony called Oboni in the Ikwerre tribe, my parents' tribe - the tribe of my heritage. The idea is through repetition, instrumentation and movement, to channel spirit, going deeper and deeper with the changing of each tone within the music till it becomes hypnotic and transcendent. I felt this level of immediate connection to 'Hub-Tones' plus with this being a Freddie Hubbard cover and him being the king of tones in jazz it all felt so symbiotic and fated. I then went about giving the women featured the choreography, movement and codes to take us deeper into that spirit-space. I was also thinking about what an abstract Pan - African connection could feel like so I included the Pan African Flag For The Relic Travellers' Alliance by artist Larry Achiampong, make-up and crystal adornment in the style of Nina Simone and the lighting seen in the courthouse of the hearings of Anita Hill and of course-the call to Nation Time emblazoned on the sashes of each women. There are other hidden gems too but I'll allow the audience to uncover them."

Read our rave review of Heaven and Earth.

Pick up Under the Radar's current print issue (Issue 64) to read our in-depth cover story interview with Kamasi Washinton.

Previously Washington shared Heaven and Earth's first two singles, "Fists of Fury" (a cover of the theme to the Bruce Lee film) and "The Space Travelers Lullaby" (they were our joint #1 Song of the Week), which was followed by a third single, "Street Fighter Mas" (which was also one of our Songs of the Week). Then he shared a video for "Street Fighter Mas" that included Washington playing the classic Street Fighter game and also featured Street Fighter legends Gootecks and Combofiend, along with Kevin Gilliam (aka Snoop Dog and Dr. Dre collaborator BattleCat).

Washington had this to say about the album in a previous press release: "'The world that my mind lives in, lives in my mind.' This idea inspired me to make this album Heaven and Earth. The reality we experience is a mere creation of our consciousness, but our consciousness creates this reality based on those very same experiences. We are simultaneously the creators of our personal universe and creations of our personal universe. The Earth side of this album represents the world as I see it outwardly, the world that I am a part of. The Heaven side of this album represents the world as I see it inwardly, the world that is a part of me. Who I am and the choices I make lie somewhere in between."

Heaven and Earth also features Thundercat, Ryan Porter, Terrace Martin, Ronald Bruner, Jr., Cameron Graves, Brandon Coleman, Miles Mosley, Patrice Quinn, Tony Austin, and others. In June Washington also released the bonus disc EP The Choice.

Washington's previous full-length album was 2015's The Epic, although last year he released the Harmony of Difference EP. Despite being a jazz musician, Washington has crossed over to indie rock and hip-hop fans thanks to collaborations with St. Vincent, Ibeyi, Thundercat, Kendrick Lamar, Flying Lotus, Run the Jewels, and others.

Kamasi Washington Tour Dates:

October 18 - Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom
October 19 - San Francisco, CA - TBA
October 20 - San Luis Obispo, CA - Fremont Theater
October 22 - Santa Fe, NM - Meow Wolf
October 24 - Salt Lake City, UT - The Complex
October 25 - Aspen, CO - Belly Up
October 26 - Denver, CO - Ogden Theatre
October 27 - Boulder, CO - Boulder Theater
October 29 - Kansas City, MO - The Truman
October 31 - Iowa City, IA - The Englert Theatre
November 1 - Minneapolis, MN - TBA
November 2 - Madison, WI - TBA
November 3 - Chicago, IL - Riviera Theatre
November 5 - Toronto, CA - Sony Centre for The Performing Arts
November 7 - Portland, ME - State Theatre
November 8 - Boston, MA - Royale
November 9 - Philadelphia, PA - Electric Factory
November 10 - Washington D.C. - Lincoln Theatre
November 14 - Richmond, VA - The National
November 15 - Raleigh, NC - The Ritz
November 16 - Nashville, TN - Marathon Music Works
November 17 - Atlanta, GA - Buckhead Theatre

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