Track of the Week #6: Sons of Kemet - 'My Queen Is Harriet Tubman'

Track of the Week #6: Sons of Kemet - 'My Queen Is Harriet Tubman'

Tue Jul 3rd

Every week, we’ll bring you a must-hear track from the Le Guess Who? 2018 line-up. This week, it's one of the projects of jazz superforce & festival curator Shabaka Hutchings, who released their new album via the legendary Impulse! label earlier this year. 

Sons of Kemet's album 'Your Queen Is A Reptile' is a sacred totem for black female icons. The track 'My Queen Is Harriet Tubman' is dedicated to the American abolitionist and political activist who was born into slavery. After her escape, though, she was able to help many other enslaved persons to regain their freedom as well, including members of her family and friends.

"Hutchings has said he wrote lead single and album highlight “My Queen Is Harriet Tubman” as an interpretation of Tubman’s initial escape from slavery. The effect is urgent—the drummers mimic the pace and posture of someone running for their life, at times slipping and hitting a cowbell or snare with added force, but never losing speed. Saxophone and tuba reach bumblebee frenzy, sputtering by the end of their turbulent flight. It is an exhilarating and highly original piece of music that showcases Hutchings’ ability to translate politics to melody." - Pitchfork

At Le Guess Who? 2018, we’ll present Sons of Kemet's 'XL-version', an extravaganza featuring four drummers. Also performing at the festival are a.o. Art Ensemble of Chicago, The Comet is Coming, Colin Stetson, Nicole Mitchell, Saul Williams & King Britt, STUFF., and many more.