Let Us Break Bread Together
Further Explorations of the Afro-Semitic Experience
 More of this Feature
• Part 3: On Mixing Jewish and Gospel Songs
  Related Resources
• Jewish/Israeli Music
• African Music
• Jewish Music 101
 Elsewhere on the Web
• David Chevan's Official Site

Paula: What are your goals with the album Let Us Break Bread Together?

David: First and foremost our goal was to present something musically sound and meaningful. Since we are musicians the music must play a central role in what we do. Then, after that, the idea of presenting a spiritual side of our lives and dealing with specific musical traditions in a very personal way is of importance. For us it was an opportunity to revisit the music we had grown up with. Speaking for myself, most of the Jewish melodies on the CD I have known since I was a young boy. I am now learning more Jewish music as a result of my involvement in this project. In a way it was a way to return to my Jewish roots. Many Jewish melodies lend themselves to improvisation and present different types of road maps (by road maps I mean structures for improvisation: such as chord progressions or form) than one finds in the typical jazz standard. I'm also at a crossroads in my life where I want to make something meaningful out of my art. Jazz has the ability to speak and communicate very sophisticated ideas and I wanted to apply these ideas to this part of my life. By combining the Jewish and African-American traditions in the way that we have we are able to make a pretty strong statement about Black and Jewish relations that is direct and honest. Our melodies are often similar but they are not the same. This can be heard on the CD. Warren and I are distinct in our musical styles and approaches, but we have found ways to communicate with one another that show a deep respect and willingness to listen to one another.

Warren: I feel that harmony is first expressed in the spiritual then materializes into concrete form. This album is representational of this process, hopefully influencing others to congregate into unit of diversity, allowing the differences to be the strength and inspiration for evolution.

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