Jowee Omicil “Spiritual Healing: Bwa Kayiman Freedom Suite” 

December 2023 | 23/12, MUSIC

Jowee Omicil was born in Montreal of Haitian parents, and soon joined his father’s church band. By the age of 15, he had mastered the saxophone and a number of wind instruments. After his studies at Boston’s Berklee College Of Music, he went on to play and record with some of the biggest names in jazz and pop. These include Marcus Miller, Pharoah Sanders, Ibrahim Maalouf, Tony Allen, Roy Hargrove and Wyclef Jean. Author of a dozen albums as a leader, for his latest opus he brings together a combo with links to “Creolité”, for a tribute to the night of “Bois Caïman”, the first revolutionary act against slavery in Haiti. The group delivers an hour-long improvisation, divided into 21 tracks. The introduction has the resonance of ethnic music, with timbre taking precedence over melody, but the atmosphere soon becomes denser, evoking a little Sun Ra and a lot Ornette Coleman, one of Jowee’s mentors. A multi-influenced free jazz record that could have been recorded in the 60s. It breaks free of both geographical and temporal boundaries.