By: The Busted Amp Staff
Joseph: Wow. What a show. I last saw Kamasi Washington at Bonnaroo 2016, where he was right next to Pearl Jam for my favorite set of the festival. So, needless to say, I was giddy with anticipation at the chance to see Kamasi again. In a full set, too. Fortunately, Kamasi and his band, some of the best jazz musicians in the world, did not disappoint. After a short but sweet set from opener Moonchild, (never thought I'd see some frat bro wannabes rip it on a bunch of different instruments, but that's a pretty good summary of them) Kamasi took the stage. And boy did he tear the roof down.
There's something special about seeing jazz live. The environment at these shows is completely different than the environment at a traditional show. The crowd is engaged, and hanging on every solo. They applaud constantly. They cheer after a player does something great. There's an energy there that you don't usually see, and when you happen to have one of the best jazz musicians of the 21st century in front of you that feeling is amplified. The crowd had a lot to cheer about as every member of Kamasi's band got the chance to blow our minds with at least one epic solo. Even the bassist got a feature! Despite the set running almost 2 hours, Kamasi only played 7 songs. Those solos really up the run-time! There were a few moments where the pace slowed down a bit, but those moments were very welcome as it gave the crowd a chance to catch their breath. But man can Kamasi rip it on the saxophone. The rest of his band is pretty darn good too. All in all I loved every minute of this set. There's no doubt you'll be seeing it again when we talk about our favorite sets of 2017. This one will be VERY close to the top. If you have the chance to see him, do yourself a favor: drop everything, and go see Kamasi Washington live.
Oh and Derek and I got our picture taken with Kamasi after the show, so that was pretty cool.
Derek: I think Joseph summed up most of my feelings on the show. Seeing Kamasi Washington live is a thrilling experience, and since jazz isn't exactly the most popular of genres anymore (despite Kamasi breathing new life into it in the past few years), you know you're going to be surrounded by like-minded fans who are there for the love of the music. It's a great atmosphere to experience.
While the band wasn't exactly the same as when I saw him at Midpoint Music Festival in 2016, staples like drummer Ronald Bruner Jr., keyboardist Brandon Coleman, and trombonist Ryan Porter are all stars. I'm a little biased, but I did miss bassist Miles Mosley this time around, and singer Patrice Quinn has never been my favorite; I've always like Kamasi's instrumental pieces much more. But songs like "Truth" and "Humility" sound fantastic live, and Washington shows no signs of slowing the momentum he gained from The Epic. I just wish more people had been there to experience it.
Leroy and Lanisha
The Rhythm Changes
Who are we?
Derek Jung and Joseph Kathmann -- Just two ordinary (debatable) guys that love talking about music. You can read more about us here: