Sonny Rollins turns 82 today. Let’s commemorate that by remembering that he was the one of the first to pen protest music on the instrumental side of jazz with Freedom Suite.
“America is deeply rooted in Negro culture: its colloquialisms; its humor; its music. How ironic that the Negro, who more than any other people can claim America’s culture as his own, is being persecuted and repressed; that the Negro, who has exemplified the humanities in his very existence, is being rewarded with inhumanity.” – The liner notes by Sonny Rollins from Freedom Suite in 1958.
The video above talks about how the album and title track came together. Always remember what jazz musicians stood for, and continue to stand for with their words.