Skip to content

Etienne Charles – Carnival – The Sound of a People, Vol. 1 (2019) [Official Digital Download 24bit/44,1kHz]

Etienne Charles – Carnival – The Sound of a People, Vol. 1 (2019)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 01:07:15 minutes | 749 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Culture Shock Music Inc

Trinidad-born, Julliard-trained trumpet player and composer Etienne Charles was fascinated by Jab Molassie, the blue, fire-breathing carnival characters, and the people who become them for Carnival. He went to the village of Paramin on Carnival Monday, to watch them compete–only to dive in and start playing the biscuit tin along with them, getting himself splattered with blue paint.

“The men and women who play Jab Molassie are really down-to-earth people. Yet they transform into these demons, these vengeful spirits,” reflects Charles. “It replicates hell and suffering, and reminds us of our troubled past as a people, the atrocious acts perpetrated against us,” during slavery, when punishments included being boiled in molasses. Using the sights and sounds he and his team recorded in Paramin, Charles translated the fire-breathing intensity, the devious, infectious biscuit tin rhythms into an intellectually intriguing, funky piece.

Etienne Charles – Carnival – The Soul of a PeopleThis, and other encounters with the figures, beats, and people that power carnival inspired Charles to leap into an epic, profoundly rewarding project, Carnival: The Sound of a People. Volume One explores the past and present of carnival on his island homeland. Charles crafts original works reflecting the qualities of several key characters–the voluptuous Dame Lorraine, the noble Moko Jumbie–and the people who invoke them every year. He also unpacks the history of musical ensembles associated with the season. Tracing the evolution from bamboo percussion groups to steel band, Charles points out the defiant response to the banning of skin drums by British authorities in the 1880s. (the “Ordinance” that kicks off the “Black Echo” suite)

1 Jab Molassie
2 Dame Lorraine
3 Moko Jumbie
4 Bois
5 One For Señor
6 Black Echo I – Ordinance
7 Black Echo II – Tamboo
8 Black Echo III – Bamboo
9 Black Echo IV – Iron
10 Black Echo V – Steel
11 Lullaby
12 Freedom


%d bloggers like this: