Conceived by Gerald Watson and produced by DJ 2-Tone Jones, SHAOLIN JAZZ – The 37th Chamber is a testament to the stylistic connections between both Jazz and Hip-Hop. It is a mix project whereby various Jazz songs and breaks are fused with a cappellas and vocal samples from the iconic Hip-Hop group Wu-Tang Clan. The music and lyrics are astutely crafted to match both in cadence and tone, with the Jazz selections used also helping to further accentuate the essence and intensity of the Clan. The initial inspiration for SHAOLIN JAZZ came by way of graphic designer Logan Walters who recreated a series of Wu-Tang album covers to resemble those of earlier Blue Note and Impulse Jazz album covers.
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As the 37th Chamber Mixtape came together it became apparent that SHAOLIN JAZZ was going to be more than just a simple novelty piece. From there SHAOLIN JAZZ has evolved into a series of innovative engagements and creative extensions that explore Jazz and Hip-Hop culture. These engagements not only re-emphasize the greatness of both Jazz and Hip-Hop, but also serve to further the connection between the two while also educating people of all ages about both respective genres. Through SHAOLIN JAZZ we hope fans of Hip-Hop will have a better understanding of the origins of the music they enjoy and Jazz aficionados will gain more of an appreciation for various aspects of Hip-Hop.
SHAOLIN JAZZ has manifest into a variety of creative extensions which include:
- The 37th Chamber Mixtape
- SHAOLIN JAZZ Art
- Album Cover Design Contest
- SHAOLIN JAZZ Apparel
- DREAM GIRLS
- SHAOLIN JAZZ L!VE
- SOUND PATTERNS
- The Gil Scott Suite
- The SHAOLIN JAZZ Project
- CAN I KICK IT?
- Byrd Over Staten
- Culture Science Studio
Gerald Watson has been developing creative programming since 1996. His first experience was through a Hip-Hop inspired phonecard company he developed called the Phatline. This led to a chance internship with a company called Kalodge Projects – a concept event company that produced the pre-eminent music showcase known as Lyricist Lounge – the launching pad for ground breaking Hip-Hop artists such as Notorious B.I.G, Eminem, and The Cella Dwellas.
The internship with Kalodge Projects, which had a fashion segment, led to Watson working heavily in the streetwear industry where he became a sales and marketing consultant for then startups Armegedia, 10 Deep, Staple, and Scifen. While attending various clothing trade shows including MAGIC and the fledgling POOL show Watson’s industry networks and contacts blossomed which led to him doing sales and marketing for a now defunct lifestyle magazine called While You Were Sleeping. It was during Watson’s time at While You Were Sleeping that he not only brought his clothing alliances to the table but got very acquainted working with corporate brands and their agencies including PUMA, Rockstar Games, Zenith Media, and Wieden + Kennedy.
As the print industry began to wane Watson’s skills in developing creative and effective added value campaigns strengthened, in addition to an increasing number of brand contacts. The timing and experience led to Watson becoming one of the founding members of a creative group called AM Radio (clients include Heineken, Timberland, Toyota/SCION, adidas), establishing his own multicultural/lifestyle marketing company called Art vs Commerce (clients include Virgin Mobile, Smirnoff, FILA) along with diving back into his passion of art where he and long time collaborator DJ 2-Tone Jones created a monthly art installation known as Artz $ Craftz.
One of Watson’s latest endeavors, a vinyl record album cover art exhibition called The CLASSICS, became the catalyst for one of the creative’s biggest ideas to date – SHAOLIN JAZZ.
Phone | 202.460.3594
Email | email@example.com
Web | www.gmoney77.wordpress.com
DJ 2-TONE JONES
A true fundamentals DJ, 2-Tone Jones speaks with his hands as in the tradition of Hip-Hop’s founding element, and through his bottomless crates has rocked parties across the country as well as locations in India, South Africa, UK, Germany, Netherlands, Lebanon and Denmark. On the performance side 2-Tone has shared the stage and backed the likes of De La Soul, Robert Glasper, N’Dea Davenport (from The Brand New Heavies), Kendrick Lamar, Brand Nubian, Raekwon, Phife Dawg (from A Tribe Called Quest), Pete Rock, Raheem DeVaughn, Pharaohe Monch, Large Professor, Jabba (HHP), Oddisee, Algebra Blessett, Camp Lo, Asheru (from Unspoken Heard), Guilty Simpson and harmonica virtuoso, Frederic Yonnet. He was also the DJ-in-residence and artist for Shaman Work Recordings, an independent Hip-Hop music label whose roster included CL Smooth, MF Doom, Wale Oyejide, John Robinson, Scienz of Life, and others. During that time he created several promo mixes for the label and released 2 projects: “Black Gold: The Afro-Future Mixes” (a remix/mash-up album with Wale Oyejide) & “A Brief Education on the Musical Genius of Jay Dee” (heralded as one of the top Jay Dee/J Dilla tribute mixtapes released to-date).
Since 2006 DJ 2-Tone Jones has served as a resident DJ and co-host for Ill Street Grooves, a progressive hip-hop radio show on WPFW 89.3 FM in Washington, DC. Along with a handful of some of the most highly-acclaimed visual artists in the mid-Atlantic region (as well as Gerald Watson), Mr. Jones is a founding member of a cutting-edge art troupe/marketing group known as AM Radio: Artwork Mbilashaka. He is a founding member of the Diamond Cutterz, a crew of elite DJ’s from around the DC-metro area. And 2-Tone also performs as a member of Sound of the City; a live band comprised of multi-talented musicians, songwriters and producers who have provided instrumental backing for several major recording artists including Marsha Ambrosious, Raheem DeVaughn, Bobby Brown, Dwele, Chrisette Michelle, Bilal, Tracey Lee, and the late Chuck Brown.
For over 9 years 2-Tone has worked in education in DC; both as a teacher at Ballou Senior High School and an instructor for a Hip-Hop, non-profit organization called Words Beats & Life, Inc. (WBL). He graduated from Morehouse College majoring in Business Management with a minor in Spanish, and went on to receive a Masters degree in International Affairs from the Elliott School of International Affairs at the George Washington University. In 2014 DJ 2-Tone was selected to the Next Level program; an initiative of the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill and the US State Department. He was sent to India for 3 weeks during the Spring of that year serving as a cultural ambassador on behalf of the US and Hip-Hop. And during the Fall of that same year he traveled to Lebanon along with a team of other teaching artists from WBL to conduct Hip-Hop mastery workshops and initiate dialogue about Hip Hop as a means of conflict resolution.
Phone | 202.906-0446
Email | firstname.lastname@example.org
Web | www.dj2tonejones.tumblr.com