If Carolina Chocolate Drops’ Don Flemmons is a Black music historian for fans of Smithsonian Folkways, then Jake Blount is the artist-activist-firebrand for music fans who’re also members of the local Democratic Socialists of America branch.
Woven into songs from his new album, The New Faith (released via Smithsonian Folkways, mind you), are a couple generations’ worth of oppression and suffering that have long been a hallmark of the Black experience in the U.S. Yes there are touches of anger and resentment, but they are far from the focus of his fiddle-driven Afrofuturistic folk, all radically-arranged in a way that turns the genre on its head.
If Sister Rosetta Tharpe or Blind Willie McTell were alive today, they would definitely ask Blount to open their shows.
Read his 2016 intro letter and disclosures from 2022 and 2021. Ray Roa started freelancing for Creative Loafing Tampa in January 2011 and was hired as music editor in August 2016. He became Editor-In-Chief in August 2019. Past work can be seen at Suburban Apologist, Tampa Bay Times, Consequence of Sound and The...