the only large ensemble group that emerged directly from Horace Tapscott’s legendary Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra and community jazz group. Their debut, aptly named One Step Out, is a true gem of the Los Angeles jazz underground, and a crucial document of pianist and composer Kaeef Ruzadun Ali’s first recording as leader.
A Los Angeles native, Kaeef was introduced to the Tapscott circle in the late 1970s, quickly joining the Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra and becoming a significant contributor of compositions to its songbook, one of which, Flashback of Time, would eventually appear on One Step Out, played by the new group he had put together from stalwart Arkestra members. Inspired by both Tapscott’s example and by the Art Ensemble of Chicago, Kaeef had wanted to follow their lead by assembling a larger unit. ‘I would like to form a group that would be an extension of the Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra,’ he told Tapscott. Featuring seasoned Arkestra regulars including reedsman Dadisi Komolafe, drummer Woody ‘Sonship’ Theus and altoist Gary Bias, with veterans Henry ‘The Skipper’ Franklin on bass and George Bohannon on trombone, One Step Out is an astounding piece of work.. driving and chugging spiritualism and improvisation, featuring the sanctified and soulful vocals of Kaeef’s sister, B. J. Crowley - a tour de force of spiritually energised independent music - the sense community and sacred vision straight from the source. This is one of those records that just overtakes you.. it pulls you in, surrounds you, and makes you wonder where it’s been all your life.
Stunning from back to front!!