Terence Blanchard Talks New Album 'LIVE'

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Monday April 23, 2018

From Billboard

Terence Blanchard Talks New Album ‘Live,’ Gun Violence & Working With Spike Lee
By: Gail Mitchell

‘There’s the E-Collective electric band, my film career and an opera,’ [Blanchard] explains. ‘People ask, ‘How do you do all this?’ Well, I have a fascination with and love for music. It’s just that simple.’

First out of the Blanchard chute is his and the E-Collective’s latest Blue Note album, Live. Released this weekend (April 20), the set further addresses the issue of gun violence initiated by the quintet in 2015 on the Grammy-nominated studio album Breathless — named in honor of shooting victim Mike Brown.

What sparked the inspiration for Live?

After booking the concert dates, my agent suggested that we should think about doing things that had some civic engagement as well. We want to keep the story going about gun violence. It feels like we’re living in this weird Twilight Zone episode where there’s the TV world and then there’s reality. In the TV world, we talk about this narcissistic president every day all day. I’ve never seen anything like it. There are other things to talk about like citizens and police officers being killed. It’s not a one-sided issue.

It was interesting recording this music in the different cities. At one point, we went to the school in Minnesota where Philando Castile worked and the place where he was shot. It’s all senseless. The principal said the sea of kids that I played for at the school — Muslim, black, white, Latino and Asian — still ask about Castille. That’s why we did this record the way we did. We have to do something. We can’t just sit around and let these guys [politicians] run roughshod over an entire country. It’s incumbent for all of us to be on the same page on this issue because we’re all human beings.

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