Brownswood jazz-funk duo Yussef Kamaal drops “Black Focus” single


Yussef Kamaal

One of the many things we lament is the death of jazz. Yeah, yeah, don’t start talking about the handful of artists that are still trying to make good music, or those obscure folks we apparently haven’t heard yet. Let’s be real. How many new jazz albums are you rocking on the regular? Not many. We miss jazz.

London duo Yussef Kamaal has that remedy. Trust us, this album is bananas. And we can’t stop listening to it. That’s a good sign. This album harkens back to the time of experimentation that was taking place in jazz in the 1970s. Think: Herbie, Miles, Mahavishnu, Cobham.

Drummer Yussef Dayes and keyboardist/drummer Kamaal Williams (aka Henry Wu) are on some cosmic shit with their single “Black Focus.” With the right mind set, all you need is bass, drums, and Rhodes to create a stellar tune.

“It’s all about the drums and the keys,” Williams says. “Not to take anything from anyone else, but that’s where it all originates from: the chords, the rhythm of the chords and the drums.”


“It’s not so much about complete arrangement, it’s more about flow,” Dayes says. “A lot of the tracks are just made spontaneously—Henry will be playing two chords, I’ll fill in the groove and we’ll just leave the arrangement naturally.”

Be warned, there are great synth moments on the rest of the album. It’s all subtle and strong at the same time. Highly recommended.

Brownswood is releasing the album on Friday, November 4.

Yuseff Kamaal

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  1. Just copped this a few weeks back. The album is bananas. Perfect blend of jazz, funk, soul and a little break beat. Right after I got it, I had to take a 3 hour road trip and I played this the entire way up and back. All around great album.

    – Boutros-Boutros

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