Following the success of Daniel Casimir's critically acclaimed debut EP 'Escapee' which featured Hirst on vocals and fellow rising stars on the scene Moses Boyd, Joe Armon-Jones and Shirley Tetteh, this album - 'These Days' is inspired by the duo's London surroundings, delivering thought-provoking lyricism, neo-soul and modern jazz
Casimir, a former Birmingham Conservatoire student, has collaborated with Julian Joseph, Jason Rebello, Benet McLean, Lonnie Liston Smith, Nathan Facey, Shane Forbes, Chihiro Yamanaka, Ashley Henry, David Lyttle, Nubya Garcia, The Tracey Quintet (Meantime Jubilation), Tom Harrison (Unfolding In Tempo), Jasmine Power (Stories And Rhymes), Camilla George and Art Blakey Jazz Messenger saxophonist, Jean Toussaint
Named Young Jazz Musician of the Year by the Musicians' Company in 2016, Casimir has received plaudits for his arrangements and recital, while Hirst has made a name for herself with her vocals on the jazz circuit having moved between London, Leeds and LA to hone her craft. What sets Hirst apart as a musician is not only the originality of her music but her perspective of herself as an artist. She is an Ethnomusicology Graduate of SOAS and her writing style walks us through her upbringing in West London and down the halls of academia
Casimir and Hirst fuse traditional jazz sounds into beautiful compositions, narrating their way through a political and cultural landscape across these twelve tracks. The frenzied groove heavy'Security' addresses the need to trust one another and how we protect ourselves personally, while the rich atmospherics of 'Freedom' combined with Hirst's vocals, explore liberation and the rejection of duty - from a female perspective.
At the heart of 'These Days', Casimir plays with a passion and power that resonates throughout each composition. His knack for complex chord changes are highlighted in 'What Did I Do', bringing an energy and enthusiasm to the track while Hirst decries our changing capital. Elsewhere, references to John Agard's poem 'Listen Mr. Oxford Don' in 'The Magic Money Tree', explore the past and its relevance to now while a re-imagining of Charles Mingus' 'Fables Of Faubus' further ensures this theme remains central to the essence of the album.
Daniel Casimir and Tess Hirst have already received radio support from BBC Radio 3, BBC Music Introducing and Jazz FM, along with coverage in the London Evening Standard and Jazzwise Magazine
'Don't Let Them' interpolates elements of 'Fables Of Faubus' written by Charles Mingus (c) 1959. Published by Jazz Workshop Inc. Administered by BMG Rights Management (UK) Ltd. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
'Interlude 1', 'Interlude 2' and Interlude 3' contain excerpts of 'Listen, Mr. Oxford Don' (c) John Agard 1985 reproduced by kind permission of John Agard c/o Caroline Sheldon Literary Agency Ltd