Loraine James released her most recent album, “Building Something Beautiful For Me”, via Phantom Limb.
1. Maybe If I (Stay On It)
2. The Perception Of Me (Crazy N*****)
3. Choose To Be Gay (Femenine)
4. Building Something Beautiful For Me
5. Enfield, Always
6. My Take
7. Black Excellence (Stay On It)
8. What Now (Prelude To The Holy Presence Of Joan D’Arc)
Through a press release Phantom Limb shared this: “We are long-term fans of both Eastman and Loraine James. Using their rare, fortuitous connection with Julius’ surviving brother Gerry, the label began this new project in summer 2021, hoping to continue the current tide of efforts to reinstate Eastman’s rightful place in 20th-century composition. Loraine was offered a zip drive of Eastman originals (courtesy of Gerry Eastman), Renee Levine-Packer & Mary Jane Leach’s illuminating biography Gay Guerilla (University of Rochester Press, 2015), and transcribed MIDI stems (courtesy of Phantom Limb A&R James Vella), and the resulting album Building Something Beautiful For Me carries the Eastman torch with finesse and sensitivity. Loraine employs samples, melodic motifs, themes and imagery, and inspiration from Eastman’s canon, slicing, editing, pulling apart and playing samples like instruments to craft a stunning album that venerates Eastman’s genius while adhering to her own. Speaking in similar tongues as young, gay, Black, independent creatives in a challenging environment, the two musicians are bound closely together, despite a six-year gap between their lives ever intersecting. James includes the original Eastman title in many of her tracks, appending the source material in parentheses to mark the lineage of the work – a clear, traceable thread from the heavenly to the sublime”.
“Building Something Beautiful For Me” is a tribute to Eastman, in the samples and the essence and the pride, but it also projects James identity within it.
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