Detroit’s Griot Galaxy, an experimental free jazz group that formed in 1972, is one example of the unspoken storytelling that comes with improvisational instrumentation.
In 1982, the Griots, curated by the late spoken word artist and saxophonist Faruq Z Bey, with Jaribu Shahid on bass, Tani Tabbal on drums, Anthony Holland and David McMurray, released their debut studio album, “Kins.”
Packed with Afro-futuristic rhythm and synced improvisation, ”Kins” floated in Detroit’s underground jazz scene that surfaced in the early ‘80s and illustrated the trust between musicians’ instincts and their instruments.
“The best of that kind of improvisation happens with people who are together for a long period of time,” Jaribu Shahid tells CultureShift’s Amanda LeClaire. “It’s more a matter of trust than anything else, where you can count on things staying together while you’re doing something else without people freaking out or words following you.”
Click on the player above to hear Shahid and Ron DeCorte, Griot Galaxy’s engineer, in conversation with CultureShift’s Amanda LeClaire.