Dwight Trible and the Life Force Trio Love Is the Answer

"Be careful what you ask for and you might get it” is a phrase that avant-garde jazz vocalist Dwight Trible is only all too aware of. One day he wondered aloud to LA groove renaissance figure Carlos Niño what an album of his vocals over progressive hip-hop soundscapes would sound like. Before he knew it, Niño had recruited multi-instrumentalist Dexter Story to form the Life Force Trio along with Trible and had assembled hip-hop beats from the likes of Madlib, Sa Ra Creative Partners, Jay Dee among many others for Trible to caress with his spiritually rich tenor. The result is a balanced yet leftfield affair, continuing the progressive vibe of love and community values so strongly vaunted on Build An Ark’s excellent Peace With Every Step, which Trible and Nino participated in last year; yet this time Trible’s voice is hinged to gritty boom-bap and organic soul. Sa-Ra inevitably rework "Equipoise” from that Build An Ark album into a synth-laden funk stomp and also hold down "The 10th Jewel,” which features Brother J of X-Clan fame who thematically complements Trible’s approach. And after hearing the trance-inducing meditation of the sublime title track, it becomes evident that this vocalist, known over the years for his work with jazz musicians such as the late Horace Tapscott and the legendary Pharoah Sanders, comfortably connects with a new generation despite his somewhat unwitting involvement.

What does Dwight Trible currently represent in the underground collaborative scene in L.A.? Well he’s definitely an elder, a master improviser who comes from a school that has to do with having serious chops on your particular instrument — which for him is his voice. I think that a lot of the hip-hop community connects with what he’s doing, but also connects with the idea that there’s this multi-generational opportunity that they might not have sought out themselves.

I read in another interview where Dwight said he would have sung these songs differently. The thing is, he comes from a school of funk, gospel and jazz, and I think that what he was saying was that his approach, when I gave him the beat tape and he listened to it; were different than mine. I think he was like, "Since you picked the beats and because you know what direction you want this project to go in, I’m gonna sort of have faith in that.” So it was great, it was a lot of fun. He was never opposed to it. I think what he was saying was that it just surprised him that something that was so different from what he might have done, and that he liked it so much. (Ninja Tune)