Bess is a tribute to Bessie Coleman (1892-1926), the first Black American female pilot, who left for France to obtain her international pilot's license in 1921. She studied with master pilots in Europe and returned to the US as a spectacular performer and air trickster. She traveled to schools and theaters presenting her skills on film footage, encouraging others that regardless of extreme racial and gender bias she had followed her dreams during a time when it seemed impossible.
Mostly instrumental with a few interludes and one vocal track, this is classic Pursuit Grooves, genreless but moving between the electronic realms of experimental bass, R&B and house music. All of the interludes and track names are inspired by Bessie Coleman's short yet adventurous life.
released November 15, 2019
Written, Produced and Performed by Vanese J. Smith (BMI)
What Rules Recordings
Mastered by C. Paterson
Book excerpts and interlude text taken from:
Bessie Coleman: The Brownskin Lady Bird by Elizabeth Amelia Hadley Freydberg
NOW Magazine review:
Anthony Valadez (KCRW), Kerem (Dubmission/WYEP), Simon Harrison (Basic Soul Show), Thristian (Global Roots/Worldwide FM), Lil' Dave (Eavesdrop Radio), Nery (Beat by Beat Radio Show), DJ Moxie (NTS Radio), Jay Scarlett (Sounds Supreme), Neil Sherwood (Tell Me I'm Dreaming), Michelle da Silva (NOW Magazine), John-Paul Shiver (48 Hills), Jamie Groovement (Reform Radio), Francis Redman, rRoxymore, Lakuti, Music is My Sanctuary, Paul Simpson (WCBN)