Solo Piano

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“Playing in solo is always a great adventure, it allows me to get centered, to see exactly where I am !” (Ray Lema)

For the second time, Ray Lema, the Congolese former seminarian who became a key figure in the Afro-Parisian world, is playing solo piano. This time it has a Jazz  color more pronounced then in 1996 for his album “Green Light” where his deep voice was very present when it is totally absent here. In Mizila – the name of his mother – the syncopation and swing are always at the rendezvous. Filled with a light and airy serenity too. As if Ray Lema sometimes needed a break after the all-out explorations which led him over the years from polyphonic synthesizers to Pygmy rock, Bulgarian choral symphony orchestras or Moroccan trance music.
Dominated by the echoes of Afro-Caribbean or Lusophone music for a fairly extensive flirt with the style of jazz pianists as McCoy Tyner , Mal Waldron, or the South African Dollar Brand. The atmosphere of peace alternates with aerial dances, all imbued with a freshness and simplicity very rare  those lately days.
Eliane Azoulay
Telerama No 2828 – 24th of March 2004

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