Docile and uncanny, Matt Chang is Bay Blue, layering ragtime and early jazz standards over hip-hop as the beatmaster re-ignites the art of sampling in his latest release. Out Nov. 13, 2012 (Anticon Records), Bay Blue underscores the chameleon in Chang who draws upon the deep South, political history, and inner city influences while living in Oakland. As playful as it is methodical (and sometimes irrelevant), the full collection of tracks cater to music technology while harkening back to the rawness of Jelly Roll Morton and BB King. Only A Sin If You Lose and Postcard from New Orleans both capture a sweet nostalgia of legendary jazz with astute sequences while mixing genres in chopping up close to 20 different records in sampling.
Lending elements of honesty and authenticity, Matt Chang builds his music through personal experience in the making of tracks such as, (Hey Hey) Fried Fish, Birds Blue, referencing “the breadth of the East Bay, from the barbershop-like sociality of the Louisiana-style fish fry in West Oakland (named Dirty South Joe’s after a Ludacris lyric) where Chang worked from 2004 to 2007.” Another personal experience woven into his music is the recording of a protest outside of San Quentin’s death chamber at the onset of Stanley “Tookie” Williams execution in late 2005. Regarded as one of the most creative musical works to reinstate a new past time, Bay Blue brews a coexistence of generation-specific sounds through a unique musical craft. Indulge.