Day 22 of our charity Advent Calendar in aid of Help Musicians.
Jeen Bassa has had a fantastic 2015, putting out two EPs on label 22a (22a005 and 22a008). As a present for us, on the personally-selected 22nd day of the Advent, he has contributed the two part ‘Widow’s Memory’ to round off his year.
The song relies heavily on sampled dialogue, much of it connected to Christmas. In the first half, sombre strings slice through a hip-hop beat that could have been plucked from 90’s New York. After a dialogue interlude, the second half switches the tone up with a calmer, melancholy piano. The effect of the two halves’ juxtaposition shows the journey from pain to acceptance when dealing with loss. The track has a significant personal meaning to Bassa, as he explains in a bit more detail:
“There’s a five-letter word that you’re not allowed to say at Christmas and it’s not ‘cheer’, it’s ‘class’. Elites have manipulated this traditional folk holiday of communal cooperation and celebration as a part of a bitter and unrelentingly waged class war.”