James Brandon Lewis Profiled

Source: Bandcamp Daily.

The third track on James Brandon Lewis’ Jesup Wagon is titled “Arachis”—the scientific name of the peanut plant—which is as close as the tenor saxophonist’s tribute to George Washington Carver gets to the scientist’s most famous association.

Lewis is a rather remarkable person himself. The Buffalo native’s second album, 2014’s avant-garde-leaning Divine Travels, left a searing imprint on the jazz world, and established Lewis as a musician bursting with promise. In his meteoric rise since then, he has made good on that promise, taking various aesthetic and conceptual approaches that share a loose, experimental edge: not totally free, but—as the title of his 2019 album attests—unruly. Lewis has enriched it with his own poetry and inspiration from his studies of visual arts and science (his mother was a science teacher, and Lewis has long been fascinated with biology and nature).