It was Summer 2002. Boston, MA. Berklee College of Music. The 22 Fenway building. Psychology. This era, a part of my past I’ll probably never come to terms with, was a scattershot mess of idiocy, aimlessness, and uncertainty. I now refer to this as my former life, much of which is better forgotten.
My Psychology teacher, Eddie, a former brick mason turned licensed hypnotherapist and psychiatrist, was an amazing man, whom I still talk about to this day. For better or worse, I learned more about myself in that class than I have anywhere else to date.
On day 1 of this class, we did an exercise to memorize everyone in the classes’ name. Alliteration: choose a word that starts with the first letter of your name, and create a catchy way for everyone to remember it. I was, for example, Jammin’ Joel.
Sitting next to me in that class, on day 1, was an up and coming drummer named Kendrick Scott. Or, should I say, Kama Sutra Kendrick. He was going to be taking a few weeks off in the middle of the semester to play with Stanley Jordan (yeah, holy crap) in the Middle East somewhere, so he was kind of a big deal. I’ll never forget when I sat front row for a mind blowing hi-hat solo in tribute of Elvin Jones, which was performed for the man himself sitting 10 feet away. I’ve always admired his ability to rise to the moment. And his newest album is special in the same way. So much so it caused me to spend several days to piece this disjointed thought together.
So check it out on whatever medium you prefer. It’s modern, but it’s classic. It’s easy to listen to, but complex. It’s definitely a new favorite. It’s Kendrick Scott Oracle’s “A Wall Becomes a Bridge”.