Written by Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey lap steel guitarist Chris Combs, the band’s new long-form LP, “Race Riot Suite,” debuted live back in May to blissful reviews from critics. Now the Tulsa act has announced a new single and a 29-date tour, including several stops in the 918 and 405.
The single, “Black Wall Street,” opens with Brian Haas’s always-excellent grand piano tinkering and builds into a full-on zig-zagging lap steel party, backed by an all-star brass lineup recruited to paint a picture of the once-populous Greenwood district, one of the most successful black communities in American history.
Unfortunately, most of Greenwood was destroyed during the 1921 Tulsa Race Riot, an oft-neglected and particularly ugly chapter of our state’s history, which JFJO depicts with awe-inspiring detail and clarity in the “Race Riot Suite.”
You can catch the group in their hometown of Tulsa performing at 11 p.m. July 30 at the FreeTulsa Music Festival; Aug. 13 at Simmer Fest in Tahlequah; or Aug. 26 at The Deli in Norman. They’ll set out for dates in the Pacific Northwest, Northeast and South before returning to Tahlequah on Nov. 18.
Click below to watch the band’s May 20 performance of “Black Wall Street” at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center.