Press Release: Cong-Fusion, is releasing a sensational debut album, which features up and-coming bass sensation, Flo Moore, BBC Young Musician Jazz Award Finalist, Tom Ridout, and talented composer, Ryan McCaffrey. Cong-Fusion has today announced the release of their debut album, The World as We Know it, which will be available to download and stream across all mainstream digital platforms from 7th January 2022.
The album launch party will be held at 8pm on Friday 7th January at the CLF Art Lounge in Peckham. Request a free press ticket(s) here (limited availability). The tracks featured on The World as We Know It were composed by Ryan McCaffrey, most of which he wrote during his final year at the Birmingham Conservatoire in 2006.
Inspired by the music of David Holmes (Oceans 11) and Lalo Schiffrin, McCaffrey first composed heavy-hitting drum and bass track Rush and another called The Plan, which were recorded for his final university project. Ryan’s compositions have remained unreleased until now. “A few years after I left uni, I resurrected my original compositions and formed a sextet to perform them,” commented Ryan McCaffrey - band leader, and composer. “The band’s first gig was held at La Raza in Cambridge. Steve Titchner from the National Youth Jazz Orchestra was in the crowd and suggested I score the tunes for NYJO.”
McCaffrey continued, “From humble beginnings, I am so proud of what the band has accomplished and look forward to sharing this music with the public. I never dreamed that – while composing at uni – those compositions would one day form part of an album.” The World As We Know It was recorded in just one weekend during lockdown. Most of the tracks featured were recorded live, though the percussion was recorded and mixed separately at Spacehouse Studios in Harrow by Nick Jackson and mastered by Alex Fletcher.
The tracks on the album include Peace for Jean - inspired by Wayne Shorter and written in memory of Ryan’s grandmother, Jean Reetz who sadly lost her battle with cancer shortly before Ryan’s final performance at Birmingham Conservatoire. Song for My Grandfather - a nod to Horace Silver who wrote Song For My Father. Both tracks feature the same opening riff on piano and bass and are recorded at the same tempo (126bpm). A video clip of Ryan’s grandfather can be seen at the end of the music video for the album’s title track.
The Plan - was later altered to incorporate an additional samba B section Sly Cops - the album’s opening track is inspired by the music from Copland. The Afro-Cuban section uses the same chords that Howard Shore used in the film about corrupt cops. Reputation - a mix of blues, funk and swing, featuring a solo by Tom Ridout on tenor saxophone.
Monk Funk – dedicated to Thelonious Monk, this track uses one minor 7th chord alongside dominant 7ths, which ascend and descend in whole tones. Unchartered Waters – co-written with Cong-Fusion’s former conga player, Vincent Salzfaas, Unchartered Waters is an Afro-Cuban tune inspired by the events of Christmas Eve 2015.
At the time, Ryan worked aboard a cruise ship that was involved in the rescue of its sister ship that had run over some rocks off the coast of Isla Da Coiba. Allegedly, the ship had been relying on out-of-date charts, but ask Ryan about the real reason the ship ran aground. Cong-Fusion consists of: Renowned drummer, Joseph Malone (Horace Silver, Chaka Khan, Sir Tim Rice, Andrew Lloyd Webber) Award-winning saxophonist, Tom Ridout (BBC Young Musician Jazz Award Finalist) UK jazz scene favorite, Alan Short, on flute and saxophone (saxophonist for Donna Summer, Chic, Natalie Cole, and Sam Moore) Up-and-coming bassist, Flo Moore (Royal Academy of Music, Jason Rebello, Telegraph Top Jazz Albums) Percussionist, Andy Sedman (Gina Sedman, FUNKSHONE, The Sindecut, Fred Wesley, Other Mirror, Soul Immigrants) • Composer and keyboardist, Ryan McCaffrey (Royal Birmingham Conservatoire) Trumpeter and co-writer, Rowan Porteous (in-demand session musician) The album artwork was designed by Iain Wade, who featured as a vocalist on Cong-Fusion’s last two singles.