Today, iconoclastic New Orleans-based jazz-funk sextet Naughty Professor release their politically charged song “Darker Daze.” Released with an accompanying video, “Darker Daze” is the second single release from Naughty Professor’s forthcoming 2017 album Identity, and features a unique collaboration with legendary hip-hop artist Chali 2na (Jurassic 5) as well as a guest appearance by fellow New Orleans guitarist/vocalist Dexter Gilmore. Also released today, the first leg of Naughty Professor’s 2017 Winter and Spring Tour.
The message in the lyrics to “Darker Daze,” written and recorded by Naughty Professor and Chali 2na in March 2016, takes on new meaning and becomes more urgent as today America looks toward an uncertain future with this week’s presidential transition.
Of the song, Naughty Professor’s Sam Shahin states, "’Darker Daze’ plays on an obvious double entendre that represents the confines placed on marginalized people throughout the history and development of organized government in the United States.” Sam continues, “As these confines became less physical and less embedded into the written law, the daze of these confines emanated into the systematic power structures and societal norms. Some say things have been uncovered recently, we say the daze has thickened to the point that even those with weak vision can’t help but feel it shrouding the move of every American."
Chali 2na adds, “’Darker Daze’ is a song that reflects the opinions, predictions, and fears of people who are against a Donald Trump led America. Basically, ‘Darker Daze’ is our way of saying, whether you like it or not, fasten your seat belts because there will be turbulence! The Naughty Professor family created the inspiration and the vessel to convey this concept and I am happy to have been a part of this collaboration.”
Today, Naughty Professor also announced their 2017 Winter Tour dates. Kicking off on January 27th at the Last Concert Café in Houston, TX, Naughty Professor will make 20 stops across the US -- including major cities such as Chicago, Washington DC, New York, Boston and others -- before wrapping with a hometown show in New Orleans, LA at Hogs for the Cause on March 31st, 2017. A complete list of Naughty Professor’s currently confirmed shows are listed below.
The band recently released the first single from Identity, “Stray,” featuring David Shaw of the Revivalists on vocals, to rave reviews. Offbeat noted “The Revivalists frontman’s smooth, soulful style is a great fit for Naughty Professor’s laid back energy,” while Live Music Daily praised “What we hear and see in this video is the longevity of New Orleans’ musicians producing music that touches the heart and soul and pulls at the emotions of the human heart.”
Naughty Professor raises the stakes on its new album Identity. Where their prior four releases showcased the group's knack for self-contained instrumental experimentation, Identity finds the band teaming with a stellar assortment of more than a dozen cutting-edge collaborators. In addition to Chali 2na and David Shaw - Ivan Neville, Benny Bloom, Mike Dillon, members of The Soul Rebels, and others lend vocal, instrumental and compositional contributions to the songs on Identity. The result finds Naughty Professor expanding their music into exciting new territory.