Turning Jewels Into Water is the duo of Haitian-born drummer, DJ, educator and electronic music artist Val Jeanty and Indian-born drummer, producer and educator Ravish Momin. Imbued with the spirit of collaboration and influenced by cutting-edge sounds like South African Gqom, Our Reflection Adorned by Newly Formed Stars reaches across oceans and continents, connecting the ancient with the modern. As a collaborative project, Turning Jewels Into Water began when Jeanty participated in a jam session at Pioneer Works in Brooklyn while Momin was artist-in-residence there in September 2017. Their collaboration, rooted in improvisation, evokes the esoteric realms of the creative subconscious. Drawing from the Vodun religion, Val recreates the ancient rhythms and pulse of Haiti through digital beats, while Momin, whose own musical background is rooted in Indian, North African and Middle-Eastern traditions, has developed an original blend of electro-acoustic beats, drawing together the improvisational traditions in Jazz and Indian folk music.
Together, they employ cutting-edge music-technological tools such as acoustic drums outfitted with Sensory Percussion triggers, Force Sensing Resistor (FSR) drum pads and Smart Fabric MIDI Controllers, but still emphasize the ritual aspects of creating music in the digital realm. The music here is Indian, African, Afro-Caribbean and global all at once. By combining their unique cultural experiences, Jeanty and Momin are bold enough to allow all of the tensions and commonalities to play freely and resolve themselves in the music.
Photo credit: Ed Marshall Photography, NYC