PJ Morton Releases ‘Cape Town To Cairo’ New Album Created During A 30-Day Journey Across Africa

June 14th, 2024 (Manila, Philippines) – Today, with the release of an album unlike anything he has ever done before, PJ Morton takes listeners on a trip from ‘Cape Town to Cairo’. Out now via Morton Records/EMPIRE, the unprecedented project is to Morton what Graceland was to Paul Simon, except that the 5x GRAMMY-winner fully created his new LP during a 30-day journey across Africa. With no music, lyrics or preconceptions, he stepped foot onto the continent last fall with only the wild dream to make a record in a month, and a mission to immerse himself in as many different cultures, stories and communities as he could. Reflecting on his travels – from Cape Town and Johannesburg to Lagos (Nigeria), Accra (Ghana), Cairo (Egypt) and back down to South Africa again, most of which he was visiting for the very first time – PJ Morton says:

“I wanted to capture the emotions I felt while I was on the continent, so I made a promise that I wouldn’t write anything before I arrived in Africa, and I wouldn’t write anything after I left – I ended up recording all my vocals before I left too. It really was an experiment in trusting my instincts. I have the ability to overthink as many of us do, so I wanted to spark something that had real stakes. What ended up happening was that all of my raw thoughts and influences came out all at once. There’s of course R&B and soul, but there’s also gospel in songs like ‘Simunye,’ pop in ‘Count On Me,’ jazz on ‘All The Dreamers,’ all combined with the inspiration of Africa. We didn’t have the luxury of time to police which genres would fit where, and the origins of all this music started in Africa anyway. ‘Cape Town to Cairo’ is the diaspora in music form, done my way.”

While collaborating with featured artists including Fireboy DML, Mádé Kuti, Asa, Ndabo Zulu, and Soweto Spiritual Singers, producers like P.Priime and The Cavemen., his own live band and local musicians, ‘Cape Town to Cairo’ finds PJ Morton using music as his greatest common language. He connects New Orleans to Lagos on “Smoke & Mirrors” – recorded a day after Fela Kuti’s birthday festivities – while the transportive arrangements of “Please Be Good” and “Simunye (We Are One)” feat. Soweto Spiritual Singers showcase native sounds and the pride in belonging to something bigger than oneself. Whether the song came all at once or developed across multiple countries, as was the case with “All The Dreamers” feat. Asa & Ndado Zulu, Morton felt a constant sense of gratitude that manifested in “Thank You,” as well as an awareness for his personal lineage and many others’ ancestors who were taken from Africa (“Who You Are” feat. Mádé Kuti). On “Count On Me,” he and Fireboy DML speak to the world as a whole, through an uplifting message about the power of friendship and unity.

In addition to ‘Cape Town to Cairo’, PJ Morton also celebrates this month’s debut of Tiana’s Bayou Adventure. Opening June 28th at Disney World and later this year at Disneyland, the new ride features his original, New Orleans-inspired soundtrack and theme song, “Special Spice,” making Morton the first Black composer to write music for a Disney attraction. See him discuss his “dream come true” in a surreal first look at the adventure and musical finale here.

Furthermore, PJ Morton has announced the publication of his career-spanning memoir this fall. Arriving November 12th via Worthy Publishing, an imprint of Hachette Book Group, Saturday Night, Sunday Morning sees him recounting and reflecting upon a trailblazing path that continues to defy expectations and straddle the tensions of music and faith, race and culture, expression and identity. Through his transformation from preacher’s kid to the busiest man in showbiz – performing everywhere from his family congregation to the Super Bowl, collaborating with everyone from his father to Stevie Wonder, Erykah Badu, Jon Batiste and Lil Wayne – he continues a commitment to steadfast independence, making music on his own terms. 

PJ Morton – ‘Cape Town to Cairo’ (Official Album Lyric Video)

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