Arch­ie Shepp, Raw Poet­ic, and Damu The Fudgemunk are pleased to announce their new col­lab­or­at­ive album Ocean Bridges, out May 22nd on Redefin­i­tion Records, along­side the album’s lead single, “Learn­ing to Breathe.” Entirely impro­vised, Ocean Bridges was inten­tion­ally cre­ated without any dir­ec­tion, res­ult­ing in a fin­ished product with nat­ur­al energy, a con­ver­sa­tion of ideas that tran­scend genre. The album blends live impro­vised music, jazz, hip-hop, and many oth­er music­al dir­ec­tions into a one-of-a-kind sound.

Ocean Bridges was ini­tially con­ceived after Jason Moore (aka inde­pend­ent, under­ground rap­per Raw Poet­ic) atten­ded an event with his moth­er at the Kennedy Cen­ter hon­or­ing his uncle, legendary sax­o­phon­ist, Arch­ie Shepp. Moore had sent over a dozen pro­jects to Shepp over the last two dec­ades, but after hear­ing some of Moore’s recent pro­jects with producer/DJ, Damu The Fudgemunk, Mr. Shepp felt his neph­ew was, in a sense, “ready”. The album’s title, Ocean Bridges, intends to sig­ni­fy a bridging-of-the-gap in their family’s story and a re-estab­lish­ing of the con­nec­tion between young and old in their gen­er­al com­munity.

Ocean Bridges marks the first time Shepp and his neph­ew, a suc­cess­ful rap­per, edu­cat­or, and children’s author in his own right, have put music to record for wide­spread release. In Moore’s own words: “I began writ­ing down the parts in my head that could tell a story, a black Amer­ic­an story that would expand across the ages, a story from my grand­fath­er to my uncle, from my moth­er to me. We bridged the gaps of time, cul­ture and struggle and made an album I always dreamt of. Ocean Bridges.

Recor­ded with a live ensemble — Arch­ie Shepp (ten­or sax­o­phone, sop­rano sax­o­phone, wurl­itzer), Raw Poet­ic (vocals, raps, lyr­ics), Earl “Damu the Fudgemunk” Dav­is (drums, vibra­phone, vocals, turntable scratch­ing), Pat Fritz (gui­tar), Aaron Gause (wurl­itzer, syn­thes­izer), Luke Stew­art (acous­tic bass, elec­tric bass), Jamal Moore (ten­or sax, cla­ri­net, bon­gos, per­cus­sion), and Bashi Rose (drums, per­cus­sion) — in August 2019 between Wash­ing­ton, DC and North­ern Vir­gin­ia, Ocean Bridges fuses dif­fer­ent music­al con­cepts to adapt in a hip-hop format — all of the instru­ment­a­tion is accom­pan­ied by vocals.

Lead single “Learn­ing to Breathe” is a blend of urgent bass, tense per­cus­sion, and Raw Poetic’s dis­tinct­ive deliv­ery and rumin­a­tion on leg­acy: “Put leg­acy in my tone/blood in the banjo, my bones/my voice the new saxophone/this Philly shit can’t be cloned/now watch the pass take a form —  it’s a passing of the torch,” says Poet­ic. “The only thing a new life form learns on its own is breath­ing. Learn­ing to breathe.”

With Ocean Bridges, the sound is unforced, impossible to duplic­ate, rely­ing on a one-take meth­od. It is very much an organ­ic col­lab­or­a­tion where con­trib­ut­ors of dif­fer­ent and over­lap­ping music­al sens­ib­il­it­ies have joined togeth­er in one space.

Ocean Bridges is avail­able to pre order now-

Arch­ie Shepp online:


Raw Poet­ic online:


Damu The Fudgemunk online:


Redefin­i­tion Records online:

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Rishma Dhaliwal

Rishma Dhaliwal

Edit­or / PR Con­sult­ant at No Bounds
Rishma Dhali­w­al has extens­ive exper­i­ence study­ing and work­ing in the music and media industry. Hav­ing writ­ten a thes­is on how Hip Hop acts as a social move­ment, she has spent years research­ing and con­nect­ing with artists who use the art form as a tool for bring­ing a voice to the voice­less. Cur­rently work­ing in TV, Rishma brings her PR and media know­ledge to I am Hip Hop and oth­er pro­jects by No Bounds.

About Rishma Dhaliwal

Rishma Dhaliwal
Rishma Dhaliwal has extensive experience studying and working in the music and media industry. Having written a thesis on how Hip Hop acts as a social movement, she has spent years researching and connecting with artists who use the art form as a tool for bringing a voice to the voiceless. Currently working in TV, Rishma brings her PR and media knowledge to I am Hip Hop and other projects by No Bounds.