Friday 7 August 2020

'Resilience' by Jesse Fischer

What a difference a year makes!

July 2019 saw Jesse Fischer release his excellent four-track EP entitled 'Cross Currents', pairing him with musical luminaries Nate Smith and Marcus Strickland.  The EP, at its core, was a quintessential protest project with tracks seeking to serve as a response to a US government that sought to weaponise the fear of immigration.

Well, it's a year later and incredibly America, along with the rest of the world, now finds itself in a significantly darker place.  As we all strive to come to terms with the past five months of a quarantined lifestyle, the US has also found itself reeling from the events surrounding George Floyd's death.  And even though 'Resilience' was recorded before the worldwide pandemic, its music serves as a passionate and relevant voice in times where these voices are needed.

For the Brooklyn-based musician, producer and engineer, Fischer has become adept at crafting deeply personal pieces of music rooted within a jazz-funk aesthetic that still allows him the freedom to explore other musical genres.  Equally skilled within the realms of more housier and dance styles, Fischer's projects are only ever limited by his own imagination.

Backed by an incredible band comprising of long-time collaborators including Godwin Louis on sax, Billy Buss on trumpet, David Cutler on bass and Jordan Peters on guitar, amongst others, the album is spearheaded by the incredible title track pairing Fischer with the incomparable trumpeter, Christian Scott, in their first official collaboration.  The eagle-eyed amongst you may have noticed Fischer's name on Scott's 'Diaspora' album from 2017 which saw Fischer provide engineering duties for the Sarah Elizabeth Charles collaboration, 'The Walk', so to finally have the two perform on a track is a real joy.

Christian Scott actually marks one of a handful of wish list collaborations for Fischer that 'Resilience' was able to help realise; the revered talents of harmonicist GrĂ©goire Maret features on 'The Wanderer', and another name being the achingly beautiful voice of Becca Stevens who appears on 'Push/Pull' - a track that Fischer masterfully tailors to fit the style synonymous with Stevens' own recordings resulting in hopefully the first of more pairings between the two. 

As a term, "resilience" is very much about how we cope with setbacks in our lives and how we're able to overcome obstacles to achieve what we need to.  And as an album, 'Resilience' strives to encapsulate that positive energy - the music is at times joyous and playful but still takes time to lament on themes introduced through 'Cross Currents'.  We were thrilled last year to have been able to secure time with Jesse Fischer for Episode #24 of the Blue-in-Green:PODCAST and we're even prouder to have spent time with Jesse again for Episode #58 to discuss the new album and pandemic parenting. 

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