The concept of Black American Music was introduced when Grammy-award winning trumpet player Nicholas Payton brought attention to the origins of where Black American Music (BAM) really came from.
His website says “black arts have been so affected by the Western aesthetic that they appear at times to be no difference between the two, but fundamentally they serve a different function and there are another set of rules at play. Black music can coexist along with the Western aesthetic… the fact that we have yet to formally establish that there is such thing as Black music is the basis of the confusion.”
Sims further mentions the harmonious group he plays with called A Tribe Quartet, a group of musicians renovating the principles of “BAM.” When working with the group is like a sponge trying to take everything in, Sims says, “it’s a family network, I kinda found my sound and place through it.”
Photo Courtesy of Zehrin Sims, from left to right: Ellwood Allen Jr., David Mckissick, Zehrin Sims, and Eric Kuvakos
Sims explains what his music represents saying, “it’s my personality displayed at the sonic level. When I create a song, I just sit down and play an idea over and over again… a layering process of what I want to say… an insight into my mind.”
Photo Courtesy of David Mckissick
Originally from Sacramento, Sims hopes to remind others of what the city has to share. Growing up here, he was able to realize how much a community needs to say, yet is discriminated against. Using his craft, he confidently shows that it can send a message to whoever chooses to listen. “I think everyone is gifted with something they can use but enjoy… treat it with respect… it opens up so many doors and it tells people you’re trying to go forward,” Sim says.
The EP of Zehrin and his friends’ collaborations will be released soon this coming season. For more information follow them @atribequartet.