Renowned jazz musician Robert Glasper has created a song to honor NBA great Kobe Bryant. Titled “Be Courageous,” Nike Basketball commissioned the tune as an ode to the future first ballot hall of famer’s career and his last season in the NBA.
The track is also affiliated with a sneaker—the Nike Kobe 11 BHM 4468 (see on the flip), which is part of the 2016 Black History Month collection.
Glasper’s choice of 4/4 and 6/8 time signatures, which define the track’s structure, goes deeper than jazz convention. The numbers align with a significant event in history: the assassination of a great leader on April 4, 1968 (4/4/68) in Memphis, Tennessee, at the Lorraine Motel. Additionally, Glasper draws inspiration from the city’s rich musical heritage — including pioneering labels like Stax Records, whose artists frequented the Lorraine Motel, which itself was a catalyst for community growth and support.
Watch the Robert Glasper Trio cook up the track (and listen to the song as well) below.
Photo: screen cap