AZA is a modern Renaissance Man: a scholar, writer, singer, musician, and that's just the start of a much longer list. When you're done reading this review, check out this article about him in Musique Magazine from November 2020. A great read! But we're here now to check out his latest single, "Go Slowly." Go ahead, listen while you read.
What a delightful track! Light, fresh, airy. Sing-song-y. The piano loop brings out the happy vibes, like that first time you heard the piano lick on Stevie Wonder's "Overjoyed"...but peppier. That bouncing bass guitar, though. Ooooh.
AZAs lyrics are optimism, realism, instruction, information, and narration...
Another dawn and still I rise up
Thank Jah I'm meditating get my vibes up
World crazy, goin' crazy I'm astonished
And who will tell the truth and what's upon us?
Evil hexes, blasphemies it's all crazy
And yes, Ma, my PhD ain't gonna save me
Before I die I've committed my soul safely
And if we die just know my niggas did it bravely
But it's not like he's Common pt. 2, just writing conscious lyrics to be part of a trend. This man is a resident physician in the Department of Psychiatry at Yale. Yes, that Yale.
AZA knows his shit--from music instrumentation to theory, rapping to performing at Jazz at the Lincoln Center. We're talking scholarship-to-Berklee-good.
"Go Slowly" has the smarts. It's got the musicality. And at the same time I think I'm hearing street-busker buckets being played as backing percussion, along with phased drum loops to make it sound even cooler. The creativity equals the quality of the musicianship and arrangement.
"Go Slowly" is smart-fun and feel-good and intellectual. But most of all it's a tight single that signals good things to come from AZA the Messenger. Keep up with him at azafortheculture.com for the latest.