World Galaxy Records / Alpha Pup Records

Ryan Porter – The Optimist


World Galaxy Records / Alpha Pup Records

Ryan Porter – The Optimist


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“The Optimist was recorded between 2008 and 2009, at Washington’s parents’ house, in a small basement called “The Shack.” The space was located near the landing strip at Los Angeles International Airport, and every 15 minutes, the sound of incoming planes threatened to disrupt the recording process. The band had to keep all the windows closed, which caused unbearable heat, exacerbated by the Shack’s cramped conditions (the space comfortably holds four people; during the Optimist sessions, eight people squeezed in). “After it was all said and done, The Shack smelled like tube socks and backpack straps,” Porter recalls in the album notes, “but the unity and love we have for each other was evident on every song.”

To that end, there’s a strong communal essence to this record. These songs feel like extended jam sessions, and in certain spots—like on the 15-minute “Impressions” and the 17-minute closer “Chocolate Nuisance,” each band member is given ample room to flex their respective chops. The Optimist offers a glimpse into the past, well before these artists became synonymous with elite-level jazz. For a band still working toward something greater, The Optimist sounds fully realized. The world just needed to catch up.” – Bandcamp

“Welcome to The Optimist. A document, of boundless momentum, provided by LA’s most revered jazz collective from ten years ago. All 11 tracks come meticulously wrapped in the harmony of sound, giving of spirit and doggedly focused on cultural inclusivity. Porter has made it known repeatedly that he grew up on hip-hop, gangsta rap, ’70s soul, funk, and R&B. The Optimist infuses these genres of Black America to bring jazz where its people live. So you can get the immediate neck-snapping validation found in “The Instrumental Hip-Hoppa.” A brassy bottom-heavy shout out to shake off the blues by dancing the night away, rejoicing in a “LIT” moment. It’s the album’s best display of how thick and welcoming the horn section of WCGD can be when they play in unison.” – SF Sonic

Item description:        


Ryan Porter


The Optimist


World Galaxy Records, Alpha Pup Records


3 x Vinyl, LP, Album



Release Date:

23rd Feb 2018


Jazz, Funk / Soul



Catalog No: