All The Way West - Sitka Sun's sophomore release - is both a carefully composed instrumental jazz album and a spaced-out contemplation on the human condition. It exists at the intersection of rhythmic prowess, psychedelic experimentation, & jazz sensibility, intentionally asking more questions than it's willing to answer throughout its 32 minute lifespan. In comparison to Sitka Sun's eponymous debut, All The Way West steps ever deeper into the intricacies of composition and the adventurous spirit of improvisation, and is anticipated to be well-received by jazz enthusiasts, rare groove collectors, beat makers, and record store clerks alike. All The Way West is music for right now, as we come out of 2020 and hopefully into a changing world: it encourages reflection, inspires movement, & welcomes new growth.
In their self-titled debut release, Sitka Sun offers a cohesive instrumental album of cosmic, heavy hitting tracks. Although the record is at foundation a jazz album, the strong African and Caribbean music influences cannot be denied - the album contains both the musicianship of studied jazz players and the spirit of an all night afrobeat party. Sitka Sun features a roster of seasoned musicians, including Patrick Murphy (bass, guitars), Angelo Peters (keyboards, guitars), Andrew Klein (drums) and Lucas Ashby (percussion, electric cello), each playing a vital role in crafting the sound and imagery of the music. The album is steady, intricate, and at times, meditative - recommended for long drives, home cooked meals, and desert sunsets.
The instrumental music of composer and bassist Patrick Murphy, Sitka Sun draws influence from a wide range of musical traditions, with compositions built around interwoven melodies, meditative rhythms, and psychedelic textures. Sitka Sun - at its deepest roots - is a jazz project, brimming with skilled composition & talented players, each one having a critical role in developing their distinctive, multi-dimensional sound.
Murphy has been a student of music for most of his life - picking up a guitar for the first time at twelve, gigging with blues bands throughout grade school, studying jazz and classical music at Ithaca Conservatory of Music in New York, and being a part of numerous musical ensembles and bands from New York City to the Bay Area. Drawing inspiration from African and Caribbean music - filtered through the lens of an American blues, jazz, and soul upbringing - Murphy developed a wide range of styles, playing everything from jazz to afrobeat, americana to funk. After years of being a sideman, Murphy began to hone in on a new, but classic, sound, and began composing the music that would ultimately become Sitka Sun.
Sitka Sun takes form as an ensemble in Oakland, California led by bassist Patrick Murphy. Most often as a 6-piece outfit, the ensemble features musicians from the Bay Area. Welcoming collaboration and special guests, you can expect to hear the ensemble play interpretations of the material from the record with fresh perspective. In addition to these familiar songs, the ensemble plays Murphys' arrangements of new original material. The group has been recently featured at prominent Bay Area art galleries such as the Natsoulas Gallery (Davis) and the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (Berkeley), as well as popular local venues such as Starline Social Club (Oakland) and Amnesia (San Francisco).