Still, time to take stock. Election season is upon us, a season that won't come to its conclusion until three weeks and two days before next Thanksgiving. How does live through the next year? I will read my share of articles from all sides of the political spectrum – I do have my own leanings but I need to know what other people in the United States and elsewhere think about the issues that affect us the most. An informed electorate is what we should be: not just the "educated" class but everyone. Not easy. People do not like to think; they react to the voice or face or opinions that most appeal to them and act on that. Or don't. In the 2016 Presidential election, 61.4% of the electorate voted, up from 2012's 58.7% and below the benchmark set in 2008 of 64.6%. Less than two out of every three possible overs ventured to the polls or cast absentee ballots. With all the freedoms one has in the United States, the freedom "not" to vote is just as important.
My fallback has always been music. In the Sumer of 1968 as the United States was reeling from assassinations, the violence at the Democratic Convention, and the ongoing escalation of the War in Vietnam, it was the music that helped me through Through recessions, the loss of parents and close friends, the birth of children and grandchildren, music has been my constant guide and companion. My best friend, my wife, tolerates that relationship and has done so for five decades. Music is so much a part of who I am.
Thanks for reading – I hope you have a warm and enjoyable Thanksgiving plus a contemplative Holiday Season.
Artistic Director of the Blue Note Beijing Jazz Orchestra. While at Harvard, Sun served as a teaching assistant to Vijay Iyer and also helps musicians by offering grant-writing services. He's also a founding member of the creative collectives Great on Paper, Mute, and Earprint (see review below) plus the founder of Endectomorph Music, the home for the majority of his recordings as a leader or co-leader.
|Photo: Jessica Carlton Thomas|
Kevin Sun displays his compositional and arranging maturity throughout "The Sustain of Memory" – his instrumental voice remains strong and true plus he makes sure to leave room for the others voices in the featured ensembles to come through loud and clear. This recording is an excellent musical adventure that is worth exploring over and over.
For more information, go to www.thekevinsun.com.
Here's one of the tracks (the full album can be purchased through the Bandcamp website):
|Photo: Jonas Tarm|
|Photo: Jonas Tarm|
"Easy Listening", as the title of this album, may lead you to expect much different music than what Earprint produces. There is nothing "easy" about this program but there is a lot good about it. If you enjoy music that challenges you to be less complacent, pokes you in the ribs, and makes you smile, acquiring "Easy Listening" is a must!
For more information, go to www.endectomorph.com/earprint.
Here's the opening track (from the group's Bandcamp where you can also purchase the entire album):