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Jacques Schwarz-Bart, an associate professor in Berklee’s Ensemble Department, has been at the center of several musical revolutions: neo-soul (performing with D’Angelo and Erykah Badu) and new jazz (as a founding member of Roy Hargrove’s RH Factor). He also pioneered the creation of gwoka jazz and voodoo jazz, two new styles that reunite jazz with its Afro-Caribbean and spiritual origins. Schwarz-Bart’s impressionistic writing, powerful tone, and wide-ranging language, both lyrical and angular, have fueled his growing presence on the world stage. His latest release, Soné Ka-La 2: Odyssey, revisits his Guadeloupean roots and confirms his reputation as the saxophone colossus of the Caribbeans.
In November 2021, Schwarz-Bart recorded the Harlem Suite, sponsored by Live Arts Boston. The recording is a gorgeous set of compositions reflecting his journey as a jazz player from the small Caribbean island of Guadeloupe to the highest peaks of New York City’s legendary music scene. His Summer in the City performance will feature Victor Gould ’09 (who has performed with Terence Blanchard), Obed Calvaire (who is part of Wynton Marsalis’s Lincoln Center Orchestra), and Berklee student bass prodigy Ian Banno.