April 2001
The Soundlab
Original Score Composed By Terence Blanchard
Score Review By Lee “Kansas” Moore
Miles, Monk, Byrd, Coltrane, Dexter, and Parker - what do they have in common? They never produced nor composed a musical score. The first African-American to compose a movie score was Duke Ellington. Yes, Duke leveled the playing field for African-Americans to compose theatrical scores. However, today’s African-American composers such as Terence Blanchard have surpassed Duke’s accomplishments in the score business. Despite being labeled as a traditional Jazz trumpeter, Terence Blanchard has continued to combine Orchestral music and Jazz to create Classical Jazz.

The Caveman’s Valentine score combines folk, jazz, classical and traditional orchestral styles to create a dramatic and creative imagination for all listeners. Oddly this score seems to be dark, romantic, mysterious, and secretive. Because of Blanchard’s expertise with this genre of music, Blanchard has the ability to combine these forms of music to portray the African-American culture effectively, particular in movies. Not since Miles Davis has an individual been able to convene these forms of genres effectively.

The standout track is “Musical Rampage.” “Musical Rampage,” in this cue, Blanchard transforms a piano solo to an orchestral set to create an imaginative melody but with a full orchestral theme. Overall, I am pleased with this score and the creativity it brings to your ears and imagination. There are very few movies these days where we want to read the credits and listen to the score. I attest to all musical lovers from Hip- Hop, R&B, Funk; whatever… to pick up this album - you cannot go wrong. Even if you buy this album and listen to it just once in the future, I guarantee this album will have a profound impact on you and particularly your kids or maybe your grandkids. I have to admit, I was one of those young individuals to dabble through my father’s record collection out of curiosity to listen to the greats such as Miles, Monk, Coltrane, Parker, Byrd, Vaughn and Hartman. If not for these historical artists, I wouldn’t have heard or discovered a Terence Blanchard. Step aside Bach and Mozart; Blanchard will be heading your throne soon.

  - Lee “Kansas” Moore

Any comments or questions? mailto:lee@blackfilm.com

Visit the Archives to see my interview with Blanchard…till next time.


(Apr: Main Page * Features * Reviews * Gallery ) Current Issue * Archive