• Juneteenth



    Stanley Cowell           Piano







    cd cover by Emmanuel Guibert




     Juneteenth is a traditional African American celebration of freedom.

    The term comes from the date, June 19th 1865, when African Americans in Texas learned that slavery had been abolished. Today, Juneteenth continues to be celebrated by African Americans throughout the country as a ritual of cultural pride and historical continuity.

    It is a reminder that, despite all odds, African Americans have strived to be creators of their own history and culture. The quest for freedom is closely linked with the construction of identity for people who have experienced oppression. Finding the capacity to celebrate in the face of adversity gives people the hope and strength that through collective action they have the power to change the direction of history.

    —Manning Marable & Leiht Mullings, in Freedom, PHAIDON PRESS, 2002—



    I always wanted to have music coincide with History.

    In 2006, I contacted Stanley Cowell to propose a project based on the origins of the struggle of Afro-Americans for their civil rights.

    After receiving a first polite refusal, I managed to convince him. A recording-session was booked, and then cancelled for lack of funding.

    Disappointed, like myself, by this impossibility, Stanley decided to make use of his work on the subject in an ambitious symphonic project.

    Beginning in 2008, Juneteenth Suite, the piece based on our idea that he composed for symphony orchestra, chorus and electronics, would be performed on several occasions on the U.S. campus circuit. But during all those years I was still dying to make the original recording happen. It finally became a reality towards the end of 2014, thanks to Vision Fugitive.

    Next June 19th will see the one hundred and fiftieth anniversary of that Juneteenth festival.

    In the end, the publishing of our project today is a coincidence of circumstance and calendar.

    Sometimes that can be a good thing.








    Track list



    01 We shall 2   3'28


    Juneteenth Suite

    02 Introduction 1'20

    03 Proclamation 2'01

    04 Reality Dreams Echoes 2'42 05 Anticipation of the Coming of  3'10

    06 Commentary on Strange Fruit 6'57

    07 Nostalgia for Homelands 4'46

    08 Proclamation Interruptions 2'52

    09 Darkness Transforming 2'03

    10 Finale 3'47

    11 Resolution 0'59


    12 Ask Him 3'24

    13 Juneteenth Recollections 17'25


    toutes les compositions sont de Stanley Cowell



    Enregistrement, mixage mastering en 2014 ;  Studios La Buissonne  , Gérard de Haro et Nicolas Baillard

    Production et direction artistique, Philippe Ghielmetti


    Une production Vision Fugitive

    Distribution Harmonia Mundi



  • Stanley Cowell


    Stanley Cowell (born May 5, 1941 in Toledo, Ohio) is an American jazz pianist and co-founder of the Strata-East Records label.

     He played with Roland Kirk while studying at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and later with Marion Brown, Max Roach, Bobby Hutcherson, Clifford Jordan, Harold Land, Sonny Rollins and Stan Getz.

     Cowell played with trumpeter Charles Moore and others in the Detroit Artist's Workshop Jazz Ensemble in 1965-66. During the late 1980s Cowell was part of a regular quartet led by J.J. Johnson.

     Cowell teaches in the Music Department of the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey.


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