By Pat Gunther
Louisiana has been the jazz capital of the world since the genre’s rise to prominence in the early 1920s. Baton Rouge concertgoers are no strangers to the smooth stylings of classic jazz ensembles and the soulful atmosphere it creates. However, Dolo Jazz Suite is not your grandpa’s jazz performances.
In combining classical aspects of the soul of southern music, interspersed with layered beat breaks, deeply textured synths and hip-hop influences, Dolo Jazz Suite is one of the most unique and ethereal experiences Louisiana music has to offer.
Playing shows once a month in Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Lake Charles, Birmingham, Ala., and Houston, Tex., Dolo Jazz Suite is a rare act that gives fans a glimpse of some wildly talented underground musicians. The infrequent show that travels throughout Dixie utilizes a rotating group of beat smiths to create an incredible lush, often down-tempo atmosphere for Louisiana’s most progressive ears.
When the roving act makes their way to the Spanish Moon on June 19th, Iman Omari and Rez will be the headlining acts for another installment featuring Ganzfeld, Prime8 Pimpin and Hop Box on the bill. This stellar conglomeration of talent is just what makes Dolo Jazz Suite such a unique and entertaining act. The combination of constantly original sets and sparse visuals creates a transcendental atmosphere that holds viewers’ attention without a hitch.
Iman Omari, who dropped his LP Vibrations in August of 2013, creates a densely packed world of soulful piano work, supple hi-hats and repeated snare kicks. The prodigious LA native uses his apparent soul influences of the 1950s and ’60s Jazz musicians as a base layer for his well-thought-out samples and airy beat construction that screams West Coast from the get go. The Spanish Moon crowd will surely be mesmerized as they fall deeper into Omari’s psychedelic yet funky trance.
Meanwhile, the other headliner Rez creates a more electronic-oriented sound with rolling hi-hats and driving keys and synth use galore. The beauty of this lineup, in particular, lies within the differences of each artist’s eclectic and broad styles. With many different choices in genre present at the Dolo Jazz Suite, there are options for every music lover across Baton Rouge.
The Dolo Jazz Suite, made up entirely of electronic instruments, is a perfect example of the shifting culture of music due to technological advancements. A reflection of modern day musical progression, Dolo Jazz Suite’s artists all embody the DJ culture that has swept the nation since the tremendous success of the genre in the 1980s and 1990s in Europe. These influences, when mixed with traditional hip-hop, create an entirely unique yet aurally appealing brand that Dolo Jazz Suite proudly identifies as their own.
If you consider yourself a fan of trippy visuals, appealing sonic progression, and downright good music, the Dolo Jazz Suite’s appearance at the Spanish Moon will surely provide you with bang for your buck. At the modest admission price of $5, the Dolo Jazz Suite is a perfect way to escape the drudgery and oppression of the Baton Rouge heat, and get lost in an alter reality of beautiful tones, harmonies and enchanting melodies that will leave you religiously checking their Facebook page for another appearance in the Red Stick.