It's very difficult to listen to this posthumous album, reissued by EMI on CD in 1997 as part of its 100th anniversary series, without shedding a tear or two. Cogan's sense of release on the opening number, "Let Her Go," and her exuberant phrasing in front of an explosive, percussion-driven orchestral accompaniment, displays a glorious, tragic poignancy. Her version of "Trains and Boats and Planes" isn't much less beguiling, her radiant singing bringing an unexpectedly passionate joy to a song that's often tinged with sadness and angst.
This 2013 reissue brought back one of pianist Ray Bryant's favorite trio records. Supported by either Bill Lee or Arthur Harper on bass and drummer Mickey Roker, Bryant is typically soulful, swinging and reasonably explorative on nine songs (including a previously unreleased version of "Django") that are highlighted by "Con Alma," "Milestones," his popular "Cubano Chant" and "Autumn Leaves."
Alma Afrobeat Ensemble was founded in Chicago in 2003 by guitarist Aaron Feder. In 2006 Aaron moved to Barcelona in search of a different sound for the AAbE. He quickly found a group of international members, from all continents of the globe. In a short time the band was reformed and headlined the Fiestizaje music and arts festival in 2008. The band then set about recording their first studio album, Toubab Soul which was released in 2010. Shortly afterwards, they released the remix album, Toubab Resouled, and opened the world music festival Cruilla de Cultures with Konono No 1.
The Alma Afrobeat Ensemble (AAbE) was germinated in New Orleans in 2003, grew in Chicago under the influence of the music of Fela Kuti, encompassing the multicultural influences from the founder and mystical wizard of funk, jazz and high-life music. The band became its own self in its last years in Chicago/ Champaign-Urbana, and has now matured in Barcelona during the last four years. The recent history of the band is that its founder, leader and main composer, Aaron Feder, had the idea to combine his band from Chicago with musicians in Europe from all over the world, (South America, Africa, and Europe) under the flag of Afrobeat music, and the principles of social justice through that music.