Cat Toren’s HUMAN KIND

 Cat Toren's HUMAN KIND

The HUMAN KIND project believes in a global understanding that what happens to your neighbour is held in humanity’s shared unconscious mind and will be passed down generationally until our efforts transcend this unconsciousness. Good and smart people recently voted based on their personal bottom line issues. If our collective bottom line does not include making a considerable effort toward the public good – gender equality, racial equality, equal rights for the LGBTQ2 community, freedom of religion, and the right to clean air, water, basic healthcare and a decent education for all – as a minimum requirement, then we suffer as a global community. When the perceived health of one’s tax bracket is of greater concern than the health and happiness of others, we enable this suffering. This music is meant to nourish the initiative to crack the door open to see outside one’s sphere (with nourishment we might transcend the unconscious). This music is meant to abash ignorance and stoke the fire of compassion. It is meant to energize the soul so we the people can mobilize, organize and get out there! It is meant to touch the spirit and keep the faith.

“Well, I think music, being an expression of the human heart, of the human being, itself, does express just what is happening.”
—John Coltrane Interview with Frank Kofsky 1966

These compositions are both inspired by the free form jazz of the 60’s and a personal expression of how a resurgence of the civil rights movement is upon us. Jazz has always been music of expression and of the people. In the late 60’s, as John and Alice Coltrane and contemporaries were bringing jazz to new levels of experimentation and cross-culturalism, the sociopolitical climate was fraught with tension.

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There were benefits held for the Congress Of Racial Equality (CORE) at the infamous Five Spot Cafe, Nina Simone was singing “Mississippi Goddam” at Carnegie Hall and producer/concert promoter Norman Granz vehemently required venues to adhere to mixed seating for his Jazz at the Philharmonic tour which featured artists such as Dizzy Gillespie and Ella Fitzgerald. America has come a long way, but this recent regression is a wake up call that the work is far from over. Many feel uncomfortable as liberal values creep into their communities (equality can feel like oppression when you’re used to privilege – anon.) while others don’t see civil liberties as a primary issue. Keeping up with tradition, this album will benefit organizations that fight for civil liberties and human rights.

Cat Toren
New York, 2017

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