By Frank Alkyer | Published February 2022
In honor of Black History Month, Isaiah Collier & The Chosen Few today dropped its rendition of “Lift Every Voice And Sing,” and it’s beautiful. The Chosen Few recorded the tune at the end of its session that resulted in Cosmic Transitions (Division 81), a recording that has garnered plenty of praise for the 23-year-old woodwind player and multi-instrumentalist from Chicago, including a 5-star review in the June 2021 issue of DownBeat. This is a plaintive, grooving rendition offers a 13-minute treatise on a composition that means so much to Black history and is often referred to as the Black national anthem. Collier and his saxophone are one in an emotionally charged performance channeling lessons he gleaned as a devotee of John Coltrane and the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM). He’s expertly backed by Michael Shekwoaga Ode on drums, Jeremiah Hunt on upright bass and Mike King on piano. The single also includes a fantastic B-side, titled “Guidance (Yoruba Soul Mix).” Both tunes have one foot in exploration and both feet steeped deep in the groove. Collier and company deserve a serious listen; you can do so HERE. Better yet, support these young mavericks and buy the single. It’s worth the investment.