Sound Sovereign/Brown is a composer, vocalist, and former healing practitioner, whose work is rooted in sacred refuge, embodied decolonization, and restorative liberatory practice.
Sound’s music includes chant-based chamber pieces, orchestrated song landscapes, and trio-based groove adagios, with vocal components ranging from pre-lingual/speechless callings, to mantra, lyrical language, and prayer.
As a vocalist and arranger, Sound is a member of Burnt Sugar the Arkestra Chamber (led by the renowned Greg Tate, who transitioned December 2021), and the vocal director for Treya Lam.
Interdisciplinary projects beloved to Sound include working with Mendi and Keith Obadike, Stefanie Batten Bland, Elliott Sharp, Anaïs Maviel, Tonya Pinkins, and Derek McPhatter.
As a composer, Sound’s first full length solo project, Data and the Disciple, vol. 1, has been commissioned by the American Composers Forum, and the New York Foundation for the Arts, intended to release and live premiere in 2024.
My work is grounded in ritual, rest, and ancestral-artistic pathways, as means for accessing our lost medicines, unraveling and dissolving trauma, and remembering our inherent, indigenous, decolonized knowing.
Engaging spaciousness, pulse, harmonic intimacy, embodied listening, evolving repetition, and a continuum of language states, creates a gateway for me:
Invoking pre-identity universal information, intergenerational and collective memory, and the deeply personal, individualized experience, which is communally witnessed (and/or shared), held and transformed.
This receptive-intuitive-somatic compositional process has also served as a visceral guiding system for my own healing, as someone navigating chronic physiological trauma/stress conditions.
I land and root as I discover that which profoundly releases restricted, suppressed, and obstructed breath… That which recalibrates my own heartbeat… And that which allows me, in my black body, the reclaiming of my own voice, in a world that simultaneously seeks to both silence and exploit it.