Eric Garner. Rekia Boyd. Sean Bell. Aiyana Jones. Trayvon Martin. Renisha McBride. Jordan Davis. Tanisha Anderson. John Crawford. “I am…” Children speak the names of the fallen we’ve come to know through one headline after another in Robert Glasper‘s cover of “I’m Dying of Thirst” by rapper Kendrick Lamar.
The desperate cry for help from Lamar’s 2012 debut, good kid, m.a.a.d city, takes an even more heart-wrenching form on The Robert Glasper Trio‘s new jazz album, Covered.
“I really enjoy that we’re all different people that are really special,” one child asserts over Glasper’s somber piano in the background. “I feel proud to be brown every day… You have to be happy with who you are.” Listen to both versions below.
Recorded live at Capitol Studios in front of an invited audience, Covered is a return to Glasper’s original acoustic piano trio format with drummer Chris Dave and upright bassist Vicente Archer. It released June 16, 2015 through Blue Note Records as the pianist’s seventh studio album.
The LP’s songlist includes Radiohead‘s “Reckoner,”, Bilal‘s “Levels,” Jhené Aiko‘s “The Worst,” Musiq‘s “sobeautiful,” John Legend‘s “Good Morning,” and Victor Young‘s jazz standard “Stella by Starlight.”
Aside from the young voices on “I’m Dying of Thirst,” the album’s only other guest is legendary actor/singer Harry Belafonte.