Jerry Leake | Cubist

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United States - Mass. - Boston

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World: African World: World Traditions Moods: Featuring Drums
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by Jerry Leake

Contemporary world music featuring unique shapes, angles, and perspectives of tradition, composition, and arrangement.
Genre: World: African
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Aldebaran
6:16 $0.99
2. Caldera
4:51 $0.99
3. Zulugu
6:08 $0.99
4. Plan 9
5:35 $0.99
5. Freehand
1:59 $0.99
6. Cubist
5:52 $0.99
7. Na Yella Bo
5:24 $0.99
8. in From The Cold
5:00 $0.99
9. Smoke
5:54 $0.99
10. Geo
5:19 $0.99
11. Convex
0:51 $0.99
12. Nu Atsia
6:14 $0.99
13. Chrysalis
6:23 $0.99
14. Gahudo
5:18 $0.99
15. Middle Ground
2:57 $0.99
16. Eclipse
4:14 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Jerry Leake’s Cubist represents a groundbreaking direction in contemporary music, and additionally for that matter, ancient music. Leake, a dedicated researcher and student of African and Indian musical traditions, has been exploring for quite some time the possibilities of co-mingling those ancient traditions with modern influences of groove, ambient, rock, jazz, and more. This of course has been attempted many times before. The danger is that the result ends up as a fusing of superficial (surface) elements of musical styles. What sets Cubist apart is the depth of dedication and commitment to all of these disciplines represented not just in Leake himself, but in all of his co-conspirators on this project. What we have here is not so much a mixture of chemicals, but rather an entirely new compound, something that will take repeated listening to grasp, and a clear indication of the possibilities of “fusion” and “world” music in its best sense.

Intro from the CD:
Cubism was a brief but significant art movement lead by Pablo Picasso between 1907 and 1914. Cubists represent objects in a single plane, simultaneously opening the object in all its sides in relation to the observer. This multi-viewpoint treatment of a two-dimensional canvas revealed an intentionally ambiguous, fragmented image of reality.

Cubism in music also exists: sound and time can be perceived from various viewpoints and centers of gravity. Combinations of sound elements (wood, metal, skin); culture and tradition (African, Asian, orchestral); odd metric structures and unusual subdivisions can open music in all its sides for the listener. New angles in composition and arrangement unfold.

Music can also be represented using geometric shapes: as vectors of sound in motion, as particles of musical thought. In South India the rhythm yatis are derived from the curl of a cow's tail, the barrel shaped mridangam drum, an hourglass of the damaru drum. North Indian rhythm cycles, math concepts of tihai and ginti, and African bell patterns can be realized as a compass, graph, or flowing waves.

“Cubist” represents my third recording realized with the engineering, guitar playing, and compositional expertise of Randy Roos at his Squam Sound studio. Other friends and colleagues offered their musical perspectives that completed the unique geometry of each percussion sculpture.


The players:
The CD also features the playing and composing talents of Randy Roos (guitars, engineer), Noam Sender (Turkish ney, zurna, duduk, and vocals), Mister Rourke (turntables), Rohan Gregory (violin), Derek Beckvold (bass sax & bari sax), Lisa Leake (vocals), and Ken Schaphorst horn arrangements played by Stan Strickland (tenor sax), Dave Harris (trombone), Mike Peipman (trumpet), Brad Hatfield (keyboards), Mike ("Micro") Rivard (e. bass), and Will Graef (guitar).



to write a review

Matt Kilmer

Buy It Now!
I've had the privilege of studying tabla with Jerry years ago and I always knew that he had a vast knowledge of drumming traditions from around the world - but this CD really says, "this guy knows what he's doing"! Very musical and more than a typical "percussion" album, Cubist stretches across boundaries and borders, and takes you on a journey that you won't want to end. Highly recommended. great sound!

Michael DhinDha Heyman

Get it or suffer the consequences
A dizzying array of grooves, textures, and melodies. Leake is an incredibly versatile composer and musician, and he calls upon some other talented folk, in particular, Randy Roos, who puts down some soulful shades of Santana guitar. Who could have imagined a horn section with that African rhythmic groove on "Smoke"? Turntable and tibetan bells on "Geo" and "Middle Ground"? Once you listen to these tunes, you may well question what it means to count.

Bob McCarthy

movement and space
Great new CD. The playing and compositions are excellent. The music communicates to the listener movement and space in a most original way that is pleasing and yet challenging to the ear. Nice work Jerry, congratulations.

Dave Kohn

A Percussive and Melodic Joy
This is an amazing CD that powerfully and creatively captures the essence of the Cubism movement in a musical context. Jerry Leake and his fellow players offer a unique soundscape in which their prodigious technique serves -- but never overshadows -- these engaging compositions. A wonderful disc from an innovative world percussionist!


Rhythmic Landscapes
A great fusion of rhythm concepts from many parts of the globe. Layers of interlocking grooves seamlessly blend in and out of each other on tracks like Chrysalis, and the shifting meter creates a feeling of floating time. This album will certainly be of special interest to those who enjoy the sounds and rhythms and musical traditions of Africa and India, but is certainly accessible to anyone with an ear for well-arranged contemporary music.

Richard Ian

Truly World Music
Jerry Leake's latest is an incredible journey from beginning to end. He has managed to create an album that spans the globe, and spans many styles and genres. From sweeping epic themes, to jazz-fueled jams, to complex rhythmic ideas, all are handled expertly. The disparate influences from African, Indian, Jazz, and beyond are all blended in a fluid, natural way. Nothing on this album ever feels forced, and ideas flow seamlessly. Percussionists need to get this right now, and anyone with even a passing interest in music from around the world should definitely check this out. Highly recommended.

Sarah Noack

The soundtrack to the history of the human race!
This is like a musical equivalent of Joseph's technicolor dream coat, a brilliant patchwork collage of sound from the entire history of humanity. It takes the best sounds of all cultures and epochs and synthesizes them with passion, drama and poignancy. I feel like this is the soundtrack to the God's secret film about the history of the human race, which had been kept in some secret cosmic vault until now. After listening to the album in its entirety, I feel like I've been on a completely absorbing, mind-altering sonic journey through time and space, with stops everywhere from Moses' lonely sojourn through Egypt, to the snow-capped Himalayas, to warm African villages with palm trees swaying, to smoky bars, Amsterdam discos and Balinese temples in moonlight. The sheer musical virtuosity could carry the album along on its own, but the music is so compelling that we don't even notice it; like a great fantasy author, Jerry Leake crafts an alternate reality of sound that draws the listener in so compellingly that we barely notice all the labor and skill involved in its creation. The music creates a pure emotional landscape without resorting to any sentimentality or gimmicks; the sound is mathematically pure and precise, and even at its lushest, is pared down to only what's necessary. This is one of those rare albums that I can't listen to simply as dinner music; I have to honor it in its entirety and with full attention, as the sacred journey that it is.

Jared Steer

Heavy Stuff
What can I say but what a great album. Jerry blends all traditions of music from very traditional African to traditional Indian to modern jazz to electronic funk/drum and bass. What a killing potpourri of composition and sound. This album is great, I highly recommend Cubist to anyone who wants to hear music to come. Talk about forward thinking.


Dance Experience
As a dancer, I see music and all of the shapes, lines, spaces and synergies within the moving music molecules. Jerry Leake’s “Cubist” CD sparks combustible creative energy, the context of which changes every time I encounter it … like “Aldebaran,” which starts with a ‘big bang’ on the tam tam, simple glass chimes, flows into jingles of hanging and Tibetan bell choruses, balafon, vibraphone and glockenspiel interludes, and timbres of low log drum and tabla (body shakin’) grooves. My “invisible dancer” responds and anticipates, expands, contracts, releases, spirals up/down, falls and recovers…whirling cosmic images within a rich musical tapestry that just won’t let her rest. “Cubist” will certainly inspire interesting and novel choreographies, the world round.


Cubist Album
What a great CD, Great sound !!!!!!!!!!!!!! Enjoyed it very much and highly recommend !!!!!!
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