14 Days of the Universe in Incandescent Bloom
Alfred Howard (lyrics and vocals) - After graduating Boston College, Al spent some time traveling throughout the U.S. and wrote a book about his experiences traveling called the, 'Serpentine Highway' (Altered States Press). The book is a collection of poetry and observations from the perspective of a young African-American's life on the road. Accompanying the Book is AH&K23's debut album of the same title. Al has been influenced heavily by many different people throughout his life including; Jazz greats such as John McLaughlin and Charles Mingus, to hip-hop artists such as Aesop Rock and Digable Planets, to rock artists such as Pink Floyd, Radiohead, Bright Eyes and Neutral Milk Hotel. AHK23 has won the San Diego Music Award for Best Hip-Hop Band 2 consecutive years (2003 & 2004). Alfred Howard has given readings at SDSU and UCSD and has won the UCSD Poetry Slam. He has read his poetry to assemblies at Torrey Pines, Sunset, Valley Center and La Costa Canyon High Schools. He has recently read his poem 'America' on the High Sierra Music Festival Main Stage as well as opening for Bobby Kennedy and Senator Barbara Boxer at the SD Bay Keepers Convention. * 'Placing intelligent, spoken-word hip-hop in a jazz-band context, the group busts down hip-hop and spoken-word stereotypes. (San Diego Union Tribune, May 2004) * 'Alfred Howard has a way with words. He also has the ability to make a room hush in anticipation waiting to hear his next rendering of society. He is a songwriter and poet who has a positive message to bring his audience. [His] lyrics open windows to musicians of the past, literature of the present, and hope for the future.' (San Diego Union Tribune, May 2002) * '[Live at Lestat's V1 & 2] are a tour de force of revolutionary thought, music and emotion.' (Kynd Music, Fall 2004) * 'Disregard the genre of music you have an affinity for because Al Howard touches upon the heart and idealistic soul of every individual.' (The Scene Magazine, Winter 2003) * 'Alfred Howard & the K23 Orchestra - possibly the greatest rap group ever.' Tab Crawler * 'Al Howard and K23's second effort, Kudra, is really their first cogent statement of purpose, an eclectic manifesto where the better moments of burning fusion and prog-jazz percolate within a driving, Bitches Brew-like maelstrom.' (San Diego City Beat, September 2003) * 'Postively powerful heady humanistic lyrics atop a rocket ship tight band. Gil Scott-Heron meets the masters of groove. Fuel for the head, heart and booty.' (Joshua Tree Music Festival, Summer 2004) * 'Al Howard and the K23 Orchestra provide an explosion of consciousness. So vibrant, those within it's reach will have a hard time remaining untouched.' (Modern Fix, Summer 2003) 'My favorite this year was Alfred Howard and the K23 Orchestra!!!! Their set at the Vaudeville on Sunday was the freshest sound that I've heard in a long while. Not only is Al's poetry/energy on completely another level, but the band is as rippin' as any jam/jazz/funk fusion band out there right now.' High Sierra Music Festival Message Board 2004.