Igmar Thomas & the Revive Big Band Announces Kickstarter Campaign Launch During Black History Month to Fund Its 1st Album Alongside All-Star Guest List

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The album, grounded in Black American Music, is set to feature a star-studded list of special guests that includes Talib Kweli, Cory Henry, Bilal, Terrace Martin, Jean Baylor, Sean Jones, among others.

Igmar Thomas and Nicholas Payton at the studio

...the Revive Big Band is highlighting the Black Musical narrative, as a response to one of the century-long issues that the black diaspora has endured since its beginnings: appropriation. Only through understanding can we achieve Unity and lasting progress.

The Revive Big Band is announcing a major crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter launching in February coinciding with Black History Month, to fund the completion of its long-awaited debut album. Produced by Grammy Award Winner Nicholas Payton, the record is set to feature some of the most celebrated and recognized musicians today, such as Talib Kweli, Bilal, Terrace Martin, Cory Henry, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Jean Baylor, Sean Jones, among others.

Led by Igmar Thomas, current Band Director for Ms. Lauryn Hill and former bandleader for Nas, the 20+ piece big band combines jazz, hip-hop, funk, soul, blues & gospel, and is comprised of some of the most in-demand musicians today, including Ben Williams, Mark Whitfield, Marcus Strickland, Marquis Hill, Marc Cary, Raydar Ellis, Theo Croker, Jumaane Smith, Frank Lacy, to name a few. All-Stars in their own right, the band’s members have collectively garnered 27 Grammy nominations and 13 Grammy wins between them.

The band has been working on their 1st record for nearly 2 years, self-funding and recording the instrumentals necessary to bring on its special guests. Now recorded, the group is seeking to raise more than $80K to mix, master, record, market, license, and pay its core team and an array of special guests, who have already signed on to the project.

“This album will be a defining album of the times, redefining what the big band sounds like by both paying homage to its roots and pushing the boundaries of today’s music.” says founder and bandleader Igmar Thomas. “Even more than that, the Revive Big Band is highlighting the Black Musical narrative, as a response to one of the century-long issues that the black diaspora has endured since its beginnings: appropriation. Only through understanding can we achieve Unity and lasting progress. It’s only fitting for us to launch this campaign during Black History Month.”

“Having known Igmar since he was a trumpeter at Berklee, and to see what he’s developing now as a composer, arranger, and bandleader of the Revive Big Band makes me quite proud.” Says Producer Nicholas Payton. “He’s at the precipice of creating a bridge between the false constructs of generation gaps. It’s really about lineage, and he’s helping to reestablish the house of Black American music that genre classification seeks to destroy, and that’s no jazz. #BAM”

Igmar has also brought on Neal Ludevig of the Harlem Arts Festival and Moon31 to Executive Produce the album, with whom he most recently worked with to produce the 50th Year Anniversary of Black Woodstock in Harlem alongside NYC Summerstage. “The Revive Big Band has been touring live for nearly a decade, and has performed with an incredible roster of musicians - Pharoah Monche, Common, Gregory Porter, Robert Glasper, and more.” says Ludevig. “They’ve been asked over and over when they were going to record their first album — it’s tremendously exciting to make this happen with the help of their fans.”

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Neal Ludevig
Moon31
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