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Expand Your Musical Taste with Kamasi Washington

kamasi washington the epic
Kamasi Washington on the cover of The Epic. Image courtesy of the artist.

If you’re a Kendrick Lamar fan looking to expand your musical taste, or add more variety to your Spotify Playlists, your search just might bring you to a new genre. Listeners of To Pimp a Butterfly are aware of the album’s passionate social message, artistry, and musical poise. Yet, what they may not know is that one of the artists who worked with Kendrick Lamar on the record is leaving behind a legacy of his own.

Saxophonist and jazz artist Kamasi Washington fuses together genres of jazz, electronic, and hip-hop in a musical burst bound to catch and stimulate your ear.

Washington has soared to stardom within the jazz community, yet hip-hop fans may need some additional encouragement to give this artist a listen. Here it comes. Last year, Washington released The Epic, a three-disc 173-minute album, to unanimous critical acclaim.

Ann Arborites can see Washington perform his masterpiece, alongside his band The Next Step, live on September 30 at the Michigan Theater.

You might also be interested to know:

#1 Most of The Epic was recorded in a 30-day binge session

#2 Washington recorded his first album with The Young Jazz Giants the summer after his freshman year of college at UCLA

#3 During his second year of college, Washington went on a West Coast tour with Snoop Dogg

#4 Washington collaborated with Kendrick Lamar on To Pimp A Butterfly

#5 The Epic debuted #1 on iTunes Jazz charts in US, Canada, Australia, Russia, and UK

#6 Washington has been described as “the most talked about jazz musician since Wynton Marsalis” by the New York Times

#7 The writer Greg Tate calls Washington the ‘‘jazz voice of Black Lives Matter,’’ and says that his music offers ‘‘a healing force, a place of regeneration when you’re trying to deal with the trauma of being black in America.’’

#8 Washington has recorded and performed with music icons such as Lauryn Hill, Quincy Jones, and Chaka Khan

For your listening, a playlist of music by other artists featuring Kamasi Washington:

See Kamasi Washington & The Next Step at Michigan Theater on September 30, 2016.