The pianist and composer Samora Pinderhughes released his marquee work, “The Transformations Suite,” as a record in October of last year. But to consume “The Transformations Suite” as audio only denies half its power. “The Transformations Suite” was borne as performance — an ever-changing six-part jazz and spoken-word epic about race and justice in America — and that’s how it’s best experienced.
In a bid to even that out, Salon is premiering a video for the suite’s penultimate track, “Momentum, Pt. 2.,” by Pinderhughes himself.
Pinderhughes shot the video in black and white and interspersed clips of Civil Rights-era footage with those of contemporary racial justice protests. Young black people hold signs with messages such as “AN END TO SURVEILLANCE/ DEMILITARIZE/DISARM THE POLICE.” The video’s message is clear: Racial justice issues are ongoing; the battles of today are a continuation of the battles of the past.
Salon interviewed Pinderhughes on Facebook Live today; he said that he thinks about the two different forms of media as being of one piece. “I've never restricted myself to one artistic discipline,” he said. “If you think that people can be moved in any type of way, you should open that door. For me, it's just about finding the ways that people can be moved, the ways that people can be inspired, and telling the story the best way. So for me, visuals will always enhance that and [will] tell a different part of the story.”