A sonic cross-continental experience, Mummer Love is the second album in the Perfect Vision triptych collaboration between Soundwalk Collective and Patti Smith. The album features guest contributions from Phillip Glass, Mulatu Astatke, and the Sufi Group of Sheikh Ibrahim
For this body of work, Soundwalk Collective journeyed to Africa to explore the intricacies of Arthur Rimbaud’s most obscure period. After leaving France, Rimbaud found himself in Harar, Ethiopia – an epicenter of Sufism in Africa. Sufi practise focuses on the renunciation of worldly things, the purification of the soul and the mystical contemplation of God’s nature.
The Soundwalk Collective spent time with the Sufi group of Sheikh Ibrahim to record their music and chants in the shrine and as with the other albums in the triptych, the Collective searched for hidden, earthy sounds that hold memories and embed existence.
Patti Smith’s only poem is the title track “Mummer Love”, written to Rimbaud; her words are rooted in multiple aspects of the self: from the passion of a lover to the care of a mother, and everything in between.
Further contributions to this album come from Mulatu Astatke, widely considered the father of Ethio-jazz, and Phillip Glass, who’s long felt a connection to Sufi music – here coming together and evoking a call and response between piano and vocals of the Sufi masters. It is simultaneously the first time Glass collaborates with Smith.
Masters: Bella Union
Publishing: Mute Song +