After sharing his acclaimed EP Black Mona Lisa in September, the Emmy Award-Winning, Juilliard-trained jazz-R&B artist Braxton Cook teamed up with Grammy-nominated R&B star Masego on a new single + video '90s'. The two kindred spirits serve up a smokey homage to the ‘90s black love they grew up seeing in film, TV, and art. Listen to '90s' on all digital retailers (here).
"The protagonist is asking to be loved like a classic 90s black film," says Braxton. Masego chimes in, "Black love I call for you - I've spoken to many women about the dating market, and it’s ghetto out here. We need healthy relationships shown in media and a realistic view on what a sustainable partnership looks and feels like."
The accompanying music video was directed by Anthony Doffek and stars both Braxton and Masego as they prep for a late-night hang. Playing out like a dream sequence, we see the two musicians enjoying a dinner party with their respective love interests. The romantic imagery calls to mind black films of the past and represents the type of relationships that they hope to see in media again.
Braxton Cook is one of this generation's most exciting voices. The uniquely talented vocalist, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and composer blends jazz, soul, and alt-R&B into a fresh new sound all his own.
In 2015, he graduated from The Juilliard School, where he studied Jazz Composition. While a student at Juilliard, Braxton toured with Grammy Award-nominated trumpeter Christian Scott and has since toured and performed with Christian McBride Big Band, Jon Batiste, Tom Misch, and Marquis Hill, among others. Braxton has worked with Rihanna and Solange Knowles at the 2016 VMAs and contracted horn players for Solange's live shows at the Guggenheim, Radio City Music Hall, and AFROPUNK Festival. In April of 2017, Braxton released his debut album Somewhere In Between, which allowed Braxton to tour nationally and internationally in the U.K and Japan. Somewhere in Between has amassed millions of streams and earned praise from peers, musicians, and critics alike. Saint Heron noted Cook's demonstration of "unmatched flexibility by merging multiple genres into an ardent, passionate and soul-filled project." In 2019, Braxton performed alongside Jon Batiste on the soundtrack for Pixar's Oscar-winning film Soul.
His 2018 album release, No Doubt, debuted #2 on iTunes Jazz Chart, amassing 1M streams in its first month. Five (previously independently-released) projects later, Fader Magazine has named Braxton a "Jazz Marvel" and "Jazz Prodigy," The New Yorker describes his music as "visceral" and "virtuosic," and Ebony Magazine listed Braxton as a "Top Five Jazz Artist to Watch" (alongside Robert Glasper, Kamasi Washington, Butcher Brown, and Kris Bowers). Other press highlights include NPR "Tiny Desk" and features with BET, Okayplayer, Billboard, Interview Magazine, and PAPER.
In 2022, Braxton made his Nettwerk debut with the striking new EP Black Mona Lisa. The milestone project sees Cook reflect on themes of black love and excellence juxtaposed with hard-hitting messages on social justice and police brutality. Single “MB (for Ma’Khia Bryant)” was inspired by the death of the 16-year-old Ohio girl who was murdered by police in April of 2021. Braxton makes an impassioned statement not only on the racial injustices that continue to inflict disproportionate harm on the black community but also to bring light to those names that don’t always make the headlines. The release received positive acclaim from NPR Music, OkayPlayer, PAPER, and more.