Luke Bacchus is not just a musician; he’s a cartographer of sound, drawing maps to new musical dimensions. Thus far, his journey has been nothing short of an odyssey. The young musician is no stranger to experimentation when it comes to his own practice, as you’ll soon begin to understand. His art looks forward, just as it takes care to meditate on the past. Recently, he was named the BBC’s Young Jazz Musician of 2022, and off the back of this acclaim, he has only continued to chart a course of artistic growth and excellence. He has managed to successfully craft a distinctive sound, uniquely his own, that borrows from various aspects of instruments and influences. That to which he attributes to home (London), his Guyanese heritage and Herbie Hancock.
This past month, the BLiM envoy himself was sent to the Warner Music Group’s Grantee Convening, ‘Music & Movement: The Global Cypher’ in New York to display his talents. The artist development programme provides mentorship, funding and networking opportunities for music innovators from across the world. In some senses, his journey there for him was not merely geographical but symbolically represents part of a broader, collective journey for all of us invested in a more inclusive musical future. One that organisations such as ours have, and must continue to endeavour. As such, Bacchus’ triumph at the event is a resounding call for stronger industry-wide investment in Black talent.
As part of the three-day programme of the event, the ‘Ctrl Room Series’ made sure to expose the participating talent, brought in for a group studio session at none other than Atlantic Studio, to new processes. Curated by the non-profit organisation Gender Amplified and overseen by the visionary Rigo — “Riggs”— Morales, it offered a unique opportunity for Luke and several other young artists who took part in the (exhibition) to imagine and create a sonic piece from right out of the hallowed halls of their studios. The piece would later be performed live at the Grantee Convening reception.
As Luke’s journey reaches newer heights, it becomes clear that organisations that stand alongside BLiM, and champion our very same mission of diversity and inclusion must coalesce to help shape the next music architects. The importance of talent development schemes and funding initiatives lies in their power to democratise access to opportunities. Off the back of the success of Bacchus’ making waves at Warner’s, Global Cypher, we continue to show up and show unity in order to create a music industry that truly reflects the diversity and richness of the world it seeks to represent. At BLiM, we’re proud to support Luke and all the futures of music.