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Lakecia Benjamin – Pursuance: The Coltranes for
€ 25

Centre Culturel Opderschmelz, Rue du Centenaire, Dudelange, Luxembourg Posted on 14 February 2023 by Team@LuxExpats
Start time :22 March 2023 09:00 pm CET
End time :22 March 2023 10:00 pm CET
Venue:Centre Culturel Opderschmelz, Rue du Centenaire, Dudelange, Luxembourg
Entry:€ 25


Dynamic young saxophonist Lakecia Benjamin presents her masterpiece, Pursuance: The Coltranes. Benjamin's third album is a tribute to two of the greatest musical innovators of the 20th century, John and Alice Coltrane, and a compelling
cross-section of jazz history.

On March 27, 2020, the dynamic young saxophonist Lakecia Benjamin delivers her masterwork, Pursuance: The Coltranes. A cohesive walk through the lineage of the jazz artform, Benjamin’s third full-length release as a leader pays homage to two of the greatest musical innovators of the 20th century, Johnand Alice Coltrane.  As Abiodun
Oyewole iterates as part of Benjamin’s rendition of Coltrane’s classic “Acknowledgment” off of the groundbreaking album ‘A Love Supreme’, “John Coltrane was a vessel, taking us to the house of god, he spoke to god in the language god knew, in the language of sound.”  With this release, Benjamin opens herself up as such a vessel, speaking timeless truths through her horn over the medium of Coltrane’s classic compositions alongside elders of this artform who bore witness to the conception of this material.  Under the
tutelage of jazz luminary and co-producer Reggie Workman whose supple bass
lines underscored countless Alice and John Coltrane’s recordings, Benjamin has
assembled an astonishing cross-generational ensemble of over 40 jazz heavyweights
that includes Ron Carter, Gary Bartz, Regina Carter, Dee Dee Bridgewater,
Meshell Ndgecello, Steve Wilson, Marc Cary, Keyon Harrold, Marcus Strickland,
Brandee Younger and Jazzmeia Horn -- Three generations of musical titans
gathered to celebrate and further the message of the great maestros of this
improvisational artform, John and Alice Coltrane.

There’s always been an undeniable mystical, enticing element to the music of the Coltranes and on Pursuance, Benjamin is mindful of retaining the underlying spirituality of these compositions - “they were writing songs to indian gods, to christian gods, to
muslim gods - their whole idealogy was that every religion is one and we’re all
one with god.”  In this regard, Pursuance speaks to the unifying nature of
the jazz artform.  Every member of this cross-generational recording
ensemble welcomed the opportunity to collaborate and pay homage to each
other.  “Music is a reflection of our times; a reflection of the spirit of
our times,” Benjamin continues. “In our current social and political climate,
we need music to heal the soul.”  Just as the timeless compositions of the
Coltranes connected with audiences of yesteryear, Pursuance brings this
material into 2020 with carefully conceived modern arrangements.  Each of
the thirteen tracks on Pursuance are tunes that instantly resonated with
Benjamin upon first listen - seven of which originally composed by John, with
six credited to Alice. The selection includes “Liberia”, “Prema”, “Central Park
West”, “Walk With Me”, “Going Home”, “Syeeda’s Song Flute”, “Spiral”, “Om
Shanti”, “Alabama”,“Acknowledgement”, “Pursuance”, “Turiya and Ramakrishna” and

On the album’s opening track, “Liberia”, Benjamin conjures up every bit of intensity and fervor possible from her stellar lineup of legends.  A regal rubato gives way to a bright-tempoed swing, over which both bandleader Benjamin and consummate saxophonist Gary Bartz take flight.  Acclaimed vocalist Jazzmeia Horn shines on Benjamin’s
stunning R&B-tinged rendition of John Coltrane’s classic “Central Park
West”.  Horn’s beautiful performance of Benjamin’s original lyrics paired
with Chris Rob’s organ playing delivers a soulful take on this ballad.
Benjamin goes on to deliver an incendiary performances of “Syeeda’s Song Flute”
and “Spiral” off of John Coltrane’s groundbreaking 1959 album Giant
Steps.  The bandleader is joined on “Syeeda’s Songflute” by bass legend
Ron Carter.  Carter is one of the only members of this lineup to have
performed with both Alice and John Coltrane.  To Benjamin, these
particular musicians and their unique experiences contributed hugely to the
articulation and delivery of this project - “the best part of creating this
record was embracing this first-hand knowledge that these jazz heavyweights
brought to the studio - they know the chords, the spirituality of the music,
the mindset they were in when they first performed some of these tunes.”

Benjamin then moves on to pay tribute to Coltrane’s classic A Love Supreme with her performance of “Acknowledgment” and “Pursuance”.  Alongside the bandleader, several generations of musicians, all of whom moved by Coltrane’s masterwork, paying homage to the great master.  Dee Dee Bridgewater sings lyrics she wrote to Coltrane’s
“Acknowledgement”, adding her signature effortless elegance to the track.
“Pursuance” features pianist Marc Cary who channels McCoy Tyner on this classic
track.  The final track on the album, “Affinity” was composed by Alice
Coltrane and features special guests Reggie Workman and Greg Osby.  This
track’s passion and force ends the album on a high, displaying the stunning
facility of each of the improvisers and the enduring power of these timeless

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Location: Centre Culturel Opderschmelz, Rue du Centenaire, Dudelange, Luxembourg

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