California-based jazz pianist and composer Dan Berkson has released a wonderful song Unity on his solo album Dialogues released via Freestyle Records.
Dan Berkson is a California-based jazz pianist, composer, and electronic music producer originally hailing from Chicago, a long-time resident of London, and Trinity Laban Conservatoire alum. It was inevitable that Berkson (formerly of electronic dance duo Berkson & What) would make a jazz album like Dialogues: joyful, danceable, entertaining, driven by the pleasure principle, and filled with virtuosity. It represents Berkson's experiences in London, where jazz is a living, breathing, dancing scene. It's his love letter to the city, bristling with British talents such as bassist Andrea di Biase and drummer Jon Scott and recorded in his final days in the city before relocating to California.
Listen to Dan Berkson new single Unity, from his debut album Dialogues:
All his groove-based influences, from blues and ragtime through funk to house can be heard, as can his love of the studio as an instrument and mixdowns that suit a club soundsystem. Detroit dons Theo Parrish and Moodymann are every bit as important to this record as Charlie Haden, Carla Bley, Keith Jarrett, Ornette Coleman, Jimmy Giuffre, and Herbie Hancock. There's 50s and 60s cool modernism (the elegant ripples of Sketches), there's 70s funk fusion (Unity kicks things off with a spring in its step), and there's the pumping blues heart of Live Bait. Above all else, though, it's a personal document: a life of music and collaboration crystalised in a magical, transitional moment.
Watch below Dan Berkson new single Unity, from his debut album Dialogues:
Other wicked songs and projects worth checking this week:
Elusive - Delicate Beauty
Scrimshire, Miryam Solomon - Heron - Radio Edit
FKAjazz - No Lonely Nights
Makaya McCraven - Ecaroh
Myele Manzanza - Peaks & Ferns
Jimi Tenor, UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra - Jyrkänteellä