Monday, August 18, 2014

Smooth Jazz Chart - Weekly Top 20 - August 18, 2013 #jazz


TW - LW - Artist - Album - (Label)
1 - 1 - Nathan East - "Nathan East" - (Yamaha Entertainment Group)
2 - 3 - Richard Elliot - "Lip Service" - (Heads Up/CMG)
3 - 2 - Mindi Abair - "Wild Heart" - (Concord)
4 - 6 - Jeff Lorber, Chuck Loeb, Everette Harp - "Jazz Funk Soul" - (Shinachie)
5 - 4 - Michael Lington - "Soul Appeal" - (Copenhagen Music)
6 - 13 - Euge Groove - "Got 2 Be Groovin' - (Shanachie)
7 - 11 - Al Jarreau - "My OldFriend: Celebrating George Duke" - (Concord Music Group)
8 - 20 - Gerald Albright - "Slam Dunk" - (Heads Up)
9 - 5 - Chris Standring - "Don't Talk, Dance!" (Ultimate Vibe)
10 - 7 - Brian Culbertson - "Another Long Night Out" - (BCM)
11 - 10 - Bob Baldwin - "Twenty" - (City Sketches)
12 - 15 - Rick Braun - "Can You Feel It" - (Artistry)
13 - 16 - Paul Brown - "Truth B Told" - (Woodward Avenue Records)
14 - 12 - Cindy Bradley - "Bliss" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
15 - 9 - The Rippingtons - "Fountain Of Youth" - (Peak/eOne)
16 - 8 - Paul Taylor - "Tenacity" - (eOne)
17 - 14 - Boney James - "The Beat" - (Concord Jazz)
18 - 17 - Ken Navarro - "Ruby Lane" - (Positive Music Records)
19 - 18 - Jonathan Butler - "Living My Dream" - (Artistry/Mack Avenue)
20 - 19 - Jazzmasters - "Jazzmasters VII" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
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Friday, August 15, 2014

An album of "Silver Soul" hits from Kim Waters #jazz

It’s a romance that has blossomed for 25 years. Serving the songs in his heart, Kim Waters (www.KimWaters.net) uses music and his saxophone to craft R&B, pop and light jazz instrumental and vocal numbers that touch the hearts of his listeners. And feel it they do to the tune of four No. 1 albums, 14 No. 1 singles and 16 Top 10 singles. On a record that is certain to add his chart success, Waters will release his 20th album, the aptly titled “Silver Soul,” on September 2 to commemorate his 25th year as a recording artist.   
 
In the studio, Waters is virtually a one-man band as he played soprano and tenor sax, sang hooks and background vocals, and handled all of the instrumentation on “Silver Soul” except for guitar. The multitalented musician from the Baltimore, Maryland area wrote or co-wrote ten songs and produced the entire set, including two stirring covers: an intimate soprano sax and piano rendering of John Legend’s poignant hit, “All Of Me,” and a stunning, soaring and sensual re-imagination of “Fireflies” featuring the original artist, Disney starlet and Hollywood Records vocalist Zendaya
 
From top to bottom, Waters’ soulful and impassioned sax shines on “Silver Soul.” Improvising, he wails and plays a lot of notes while exploring the full potential of each harmonic statement. The disc sounds like a collection of hit singles. Waters has a penchant for penning grand melodies that he sets amidst rhythmic, often sensuous grooves adorned with astute percussive d├ęcor. 

The first single and session starter, “Dreaming Of You,” on which Waters gets an assist on piano from his daughter Kayla Waters, is an exuberant paean redolent of falling in love. “On A Mission” has the driven technician orating through his tenor horn. A pleading sax is reinforced with a beautiful piano melody and vocal chorus sung by Waters on the seductive “Stay Together.” In his early years, Waters was mentored by Washington, DC go-go pioneer Chuck Brown, who receives a tribute on the bouncy energizer “Go-Go Smooth.”  Waters’ wife, vocalist Dana Pope, occupies the spotlight on the amorous pledge “Anything You Need.” The couple currently resides near Austin, Texas in the enclave of Round Rock spawning the radio-friendly excursion “Cruising Round Rock.” After the two covers, the seduction continues on the steamy “Let’s Make Love” making its intentions known on the vocal chorus. Changing the mood, “High Stride” lifts the tempo with a lilting strut led by tenor sax. Perhaps a hint of mystery heightens the romance although it is no mystery that the sweeping, cinematically sweet soprano sax valentine “A Song For Dana” is about Waters’ wife and collaborator. He and R&B crooner Eric Roberson co-wrote “Laying Beside Me,” which closes the record with what bodes to become an urban AC hit. 

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Father knew best: Kiki Ebsen records a jazz tribute to her late dad, actor Buddy Ebsen #jazz

 “Scarecrow Sessions,” due September 30, is comprised of standards and songs associated with her father’s showbiz career; “If I Only Had A Brain” is the No. 2 most added radio single this week.
 
Singer-songwriter Kiki Ebsen stubbornly refused her famous father’s repeated suggestions to learn how to sing jazz standards. Rebelliously she insisted upon forging her own path as a solo artist and accompanying keyboardist-vocalist with a bevy of A-list pop stars. Eleven years after the passing of her dad, actor Buddy Ebsen, Kiki will pay tribute by releasing exactly the type of collection he fervently urged her to record, “Scarecrow Sessions” on September 30 on the Painted Pony Media label. The material comes from The Great American Songbook, a stunning original (“Missing You”) penned by the song and dance man turned movie and television star, and songs associated with his career, including an ill-fated starring role in “The Wizard Of Oz.” The first single prefacing the acoustic jazz set produced by David Mann, “If I Only Had A Brain,” is the No. 2 most added radio single this week. 
  
“We are losing the iconic talents many of us grew up with. By recording these songs, I hope not only to honor my father’s memory and his love of jazz, but to create a musical statement that is truly my own. I’m connecting his past to my present in a way that will no doubt leave me forever changed,” said Ebsen, who completed the album as a Father’s Day offering after a successful Kickstarter campaign. “Through this journey I have discovered my voice. A simple yet beautiful tone that emanates from a true place in my heart; a place of lightness and ease.”
 
Front and center throughout the collection is Ebsen’s classically-trained voice that sounds like it was born to sing jazz - warm, elegant, supple, pretty and passionate. She recorded in New York City finding inspiration while strolling the same streets that her father roamed during his Vaudeville days. Ebsen is accompanied by a first-rate ensemble featuring some of the Big Apple’s best players such as Chuck Loeb (electric and acoustic guitars), John Patitucci (acoustic and electric bass), Henry Hey (piano and organ), Clint de Ganon (drums) and Mann on saxophone and flute. Live strings add grace and emotional depth to the proceedings.         

“Scarecrow Sessions” takes its name from a little known story of Hollywood heartbreak. Buddy Ebsen was originally cast as the Scarecrow in “The Wizard Of Oz,” but yielded the role to Ray Bolger while agreeing to play the Tin Man instead. However, Ebsen had a toxic reaction to being cloaked in tin from head to toe with his hands and face dusted in aluminum that caused severe breathing problems when his lungs became full of metallic particles. He was unable to get enough oxygen into his bloodstream and ended up hospitalized forced to breathe with the aid of a respirator for several days requiring him to relinquish the role.
 
Songs on “Scarecrow Sessions” with much happier Golden Age associations are “Moon River,” in which Buddy Ebsen played opposite Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”; “At The Codfish Ball,” which Ebsen originally sang and danced with Shirley Temple in “Captain January”; and “St. Louis Blues” from Ebsen’s first motion picture, “Banjo On My Knee,” in which he starred alongside legends Joel McCrea and Barbara Stanwyck. Kiki Ebsen unearthed the yearning torch song “Missing You” when sifting through a box of her father’s old scripts and songbooks after his passing. She began performing the arresting piano and voice confessional co-authored by her father during her own shows producing chills as she felt his presence thus it was a natural selection for the album salute. The liner notes booklet inserted in the CD packaging contains photos from her father’s storied career, intimate family pictures and personal remembrances.            

On her five previous solo releases, Ebsen preferred to interpret her own musical journey via self-penned material that has been well received. She has toured and performed with an extensive list of hitmakers that boasts Al Jarreau, Tracy Chapman, Boz Scaggs, Christopher Cross and Chicago while her songs have been covered by contemporary jazz chart-toppers Boney James, Eric Marienthal and Jessy J. After performing in Laguna Beach, Calif. this weekend, Ebsen jets to the United Kingdom for a series of shows this month before returning for additional Southern California dates in September ahead of the album release. For more information, please visit www.KikiEbsen.com.
 
The songs on “Scarecrow Sessions” are:
 
“You Don’t Know What Love Is”
“If I Only Had A Brain”
“Missing You”
“Moon River”
“Comes Love”
“Tea For Two”
“At The Codfish Ball”
“Laura”
“Easy To Love”
“Prelude”
“St. Louis Blues”
“Over The Rainbow”

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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Peter White - "Smile" - Release on Heads Up, October 7, 2014 #jazz

GUITARIST/COMPOSER PETER WHITE SET ENERGIZES HIS ACOUSTIC SOUND ON SMILE, OUT OCTOBER 7, 2014
 
New Heads Up recording completes trilogy of original material
Special guests include Mindi Abair, Rick Braun, Euge Groove, Philippe Saisse, Nate Phillips, Charlotte White, Ramon Yslas and Stevo Theard

In the era ruled by the electric guitar, British-born, LA-based Peter White reigns supreme as one the world’s greatest masters of the nylon-string acoustic guitar. From the time he burst on the scene with rock legend Al Stewart in the seventies and singer Basia in the eighties to his session work with Richard Elliot, Jeff Golub, Lee Ritenour, Kirk Whalum and Boney James, White’s fabulous fingers continue to showcase the timeless tones and timbres that come from wood, skin and an expansive musical imagination.

Smile, set for release October 7, 2014 on Heads Up, a division of Concord Music Group, is White’s fourteenth recording as a leader, and his scintillating, contemporary jazz sound is buttressed by his equally-impressive command of several instruments and augmented by an impressive array of special guests, including vocalist Mindi Abair, trumpeter Rick Braun, soprano saxophonist Euge Groove, keyboardist Philippe Saisse, bassist Nate Phillips, violinist (and daughter) Charlotte White, Ramon Yslas on bongos and vocalist Stevo Theard. (International release dates may vary)

“This CD is my third recording for Concord of all original songs,” White says. “It started with Good Day (2009) and continued with Here We Go (2012). What I try to do on every single album is produce a story that has adventures; that has different styles that take you to different places.”

The ten tracks on Smile reflect the wide reach of White’s musical horizons, which emanate from contemporary jazz and branch out into R&B, classical and world music vistas. White’s nuanced and nimble fingers take the listener on an aural movie, set in a multitude of musical places and spaces.

The title track kicks off with some spirited vocals from Abair. “I’ve done hundreds of shows with Mindi – she’s a great friend,” White says. “So I asked her to sing the lead part. And she did a great job.” Abair also sings on “Hold Me Close,” which features Stevo Theard’s jazzy vocals. “On that song, Stevo and Mindi were singing in unison,” says White. “Then Stevo started scatting and improvising, and I thought – this is great, something new for me that I haven't recorded before.”

Smile’s other tracks, “Head Over Heels,” “In Rainbows,” “Floating In Air,” “Coming Home,” “Nightfall” and “Awakening (Jordan’s Song),” written to mark the twenty-first birthday of a friend’s daughter, all have equal and evocative doses of quiet storm, anthemic, atmospheric, Latin, Motown  and uptempo musical tableaus, showcasing White’s poetic and piercing plectral prowess.

Two selections stand for their special subject matter. “‘Beautiful Love’ is my tribute to Barry White,” the guitarist fondly recalls. “I was sixteen or seventeen when I heard him back home in England. He did those long intros…So this was my attempt to do something like that – to have the intro just build. I wrote ‘Don Quixote’s Final Quest’ (co-written with keyboardist Freddie Ravel) a long time ago, but I almost didn’t put it on the album, because it was so different. It took us three days to mix the song – there are so many elements in it. It’s my tribute to ‘Classical Gas’ by Mason Williams, which influenced me to take up the Spanish guitar when I was a kid. I was heavily into rock and roll. But this guitar being played finger-style had so much power, I said, ‘Wow! I want to play guitar like this.’”

Born in 1954 in Luton, and raised in Letchworth – both suburbs of London, White played the clarinet, trombone, violin and piano before settling on the electric guitar, and, like most kids of his era, he fell under the electric spell of Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page, before he crossed over into the acoustic realm, which was also encouraged when his brother, pianist Danny White, accidently destroyed his electric axe.

White started his professional career at the age of nineteen. The next year he joined Al Stewart and stayed with him for two decades. Originally hired as a pianist, White’s first big break was on Stewart’s 1976 hit “The Year of the Cat,” and he also co-wrote many songs on Stewart’s 1978 LP, Time Passages. White later moved to Los Angeles and formed the band Shot in the Dark. His brother Danny was one of the founding members of the British pop group Matt Bianco, which included singer Basia. When she went solo, the guitarist and his brother recorded several albums with her, including her 1987 debut, Time and Tide, and the 1990 follow-up, London Warsaw New York.

“I learned a whole lot from Al Stewart,” White says. “How to write a song; how to record a song, how to perform onstage and talk to the audience…It’s impossible for that not to rub off after being with him for twenty years. He was very big on songs having an instrumental motif that runs through the music, and I have that same concept in my music now. With Basia, there was a lot of jazz in the music; a lot more saxophone, a lot more jazzy chords and playing in flat keys. I realized that there’s a lot more to music than just 1-2-3-4 rock ‘n’ roll.”

After years of session work with some of the best contemporary jazz stars, including Richard Elliot, Warren Hill, Marc Antoine and Boney James, White struck out on his own in 1990 and recorded his debut album, Reveillez-Vous, that same year. His previous recordings as a leader include Glow (2001), Confidential (2004), Playin’ Favorites (2006), Good Day (2009) and Here We Go (2012), featuring Kirk Whalum and David Sanborn, all of which ranked at the top of the Billboard Jazz charts. He also participates in the critically acclaimed Guitars and Saxes tours, and he created his annual Peter White Christmas Tour, which grew out of the success of his two holiday albums, Songs of the Season (1997) and A Peter White Christmas (2007).

On his latest CD Smile, Peter White proves yet again that he doesn’t have to plug in to electrify audiences. “People have told me that when I play electric guitar, it sounds good,” he says. “But as soon as I play acoustic guitar, it sounds distinctive. And that’s because I put what I learned from playing the electric guitar and apply it to the acoustic guitar. It’s very easy for me to go that route. My musical voice speaks on the nylon-string guitar.”


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Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Euge Groove - "Got 2 Be Groovin'" - Release on Shanachie August 19, 2014 #jazz

Chart-Topping Multi-Instrumentalist EUGE GROOVE Keeps The Groove On New CD
GOT 2 BE GROOVIN’ Featuring Peter White, Paul Brown, Elliott Yamin, Trin-i-Tee 5:7’s Chanel Haynes & More

“Fear and creativity can not live in the same room,” declares free-spirited and consummate chart-topping saxophonist, composer, producer and radio host Euge Groove. “You can’t bring fear into the creative process. It took me a while to get that.” Euge Groove’s Ying and Yang and ebb and flow approach to his artistry and life have allowed him to enjoy a career longevity that is atypical. The highly sought after musical chameleon has been called upon for his musical prowess by everyone from Rock `N' Roll Hall of Famer Tina Turner and balladeer Luther Vandross to UK Blues Rocker Joe Cocker, Richard Marx, Tower of Power and Huey Lewis and the News, among countless others. A road warrior, Euge Groove stays at the top of his game by maintaining a busy touring schedule. “I love live performance, which is probably pretty obvious to anyone that has seen me live,” shares the charismatic saxman. “On a sonic level, I try to capture the space of a live performance when I record. Instead of going for a really ‘dry’ soundstage, I try to envision what the sound would be if it was playing on a theater or small venue stage.” August 19, 2014 Shanachie Entertainment will release GOT 2 BE GROOVIN’, created over a six month period and the latest installment in Euge Groove’s musical evolution. “It was a blessing to take some time off from touring and really be able to focus on the creating this project,” states Euge. “I’ve built a great studio here at the ‘Groove House’ and it makes me feel good just to sit in it. I’ll light a bunch of candles, incense, warm lighting, and just open the mind to music. It’s an amazing feeling.”

In an industry where artists are consistently put in a box and categorized, Euge Groove remains an artist who chooses to continually push the boundaries and let his music go where his heart leads. “Good music is good music, no matter what.” Euge’s open heart and ears have led him to the top of the charts multiple times resulting in thirteen #1 hits. GOT 2 BE GROOVIN’ is sure to find a home at the top once again.

GOT 2 BE GROOVIN’ is an exhilarating set of nine originals and one cover that opens with Euge’s soaring soprano saxophone on the alluring “Forever And A Day,” giving a nod to Shakespeare in typical Euge tradition. The album’s title track and first single embodies all the right ingredients for a Euge Groove smash hit, as he struts his stuff and pulls out all the stops concocting a timeless organic groove of jazz, R&B, funk and soul. “This song came out one morning after I had gone to bed diggin’ on James Brown,” explains Euge. “He always had groove that turned the snare beat around and I wanted to capture that but in a modern studio kind of way.” Euge nails the track with its freight train guitar, rolling Hammond B 3 and funk horn section that would have done the ‘Godfather of Soul’ proud. In addition to paying homage to musical influences on GOT 2 BE GROOVIN’, Euge gives us insight into some of the people closest to him. A family man, many of the album tracks are inspired by his family, including the irresistibly spunky and sparkling R&B number “Miss Bane,” which highlights Euge’s ethereal soprano and was penned in honor of his wife. Euge also dedicated the album’s one cover, the Doug Edwards and David Richardson song “Wild Flower,” to his wife stating that “every lyric in the song seems like it was written just for her.” Through the years “Wild Flower” has been recorded by everyone from The O’Jays and The Neville Brothers to Johnny Mathis and Blake Shelton. Euge’s rendition features Elliot Yamin of American Idol fame who delivers a warm and moving version.

The sweet and mellifluous ditty “Hey Hey Lil’ Lilah Belle” captures the jubilant and beautiful energy of Euge’s daughter while “Homie Grown” finds him in good company collaborating with some like-minded creative spirits including guitarist Paul Brown, keyboardist and guitarist Jeff Carruthers, and bassist Roberto Vally. A special highlight on GOT 2 BE GROOVIN’ is the introspective and gorgeous gospel-inflected “Rain Down On Me,” featuring Peter White’s impressionistic guitar in a delicate dance with Euge’s robust tenor. “I associate this song with God and it is about asking for a cleansing of the soul. It is something I beg for from time to time,” confides the multi-instrumentalist.

“Groovin Up Hip Street” calls to mind magical vibes of The Blackbyrd’s with its magical groove. Euge shares, “I had an idea to write a song that if it was playing while you were swaggering with confidence on the ‘hip street’ wherever you are and it was playing behind you, this is what it would sound like. It’s four-on-the-floor kick drum is your foot-step and your finger snaps and hand claps push the groove. There is no snare drum on this cut, which is a first for me. Just snaps and claps.” Who wouldn’t want theme a like this?!

Euge Groove pays homage to his West Coast roots with “Tango in Tio.” T.O., being a nickname given to his Thousand Oaks neighborhood. GOT 2 BE GROOVIN’ closes with “In Love with You” featuring vocalist Chanel Haynes from Trin-i-Tee 5:7. Euge explains how he connected with the singer. “My wife happened to be at her sister’s house in Austin for a party and was helping to clean up when she heard someone singing in the next room. She was freaking out over her voice. It turned out to be Chanel. Her voice is ridiculous. At times it’s like listening to Toni Braxton, then she goes all Tina Turner on you!”

Born Steven Eugene Grove in Hagerstown, Maryland, Euge Groove grew up in a musical home. His mother played piano and taught the Cherub choir at Christ Lutheran Church and he began his own musical pursuits at the age of seven, beginning with the piano and adding the saxophone at nine. But for Euge it was in elementary school where he discovered that music was his calling. “In fifth grade I thought I'd be in school band the rest of my life.” He later discovered two saxophonists who had a profound effect on his approach to playing. “One was French classical player Marcel Mule, who really defined what the sax was supposed to sound like for me and the other was David Sanborn. He took that sound and brought it into the mainstream world,” reminisces the worldly saxophonist. Through the years, Euge’s love of Jazz, R&B, Gospel and Blues have all come together to inform his personalized sound. He explains, “I've listened to everyone from Grover (Washington Jr.) and (David) Sanborn to (Charlie) Parker and (John) Coltrane as well as (Michael) Brecker, (Stan) Getz, King Curtis, Junior Walker, Richard Elliott and Kirk Whalum. The thing is, the more mature we become the more those influences fuse into something new. I always listened to a lot of R&B growing up, fused that with Pop music, then with the Gospel music. Hopefully all of these influences come through in my music and I am able to create my own unique expression.”

A graduate of the University of Miami's School of Music, Euge launched his professional career in Miami in the mid 80s, playing in Salsa bands, top 40 club bands and doing the occasional high profile session date like Expose's “Seasons Change,” a #1 Billboard AC hit. Not long after he moved to L.A. in 1987, he wrote a track for Richard Elliot's THE POWER OF SUGGESTION album, and Elliot recommended Euge to take over his spot in Tower of Power. Euge toured with TOP for four years, including a year backing Huey Lewis & The News. His resume grew from there to include recording, touring or performing stints with Joe Cocker, The Eurythmics, The Gap Band, Elton John, Bonnie Raitt, Aaron Neville and Richard Marx. Marx included Euge's horn on “Keep Coming Back,” a #1 AC hit duet he recorded with Luther Vandross. In 1999, coming off the road after two years of touring with popular Italian singer Eros Ramazotti and Joe Cocker, the saxophonist paved the way for his eventual solo stardom by recording some tracks of his own. Without a record label to distribute the music, Euge put his songs on the now-defunct MP3.com website, dubbing himself “Euge Groove” and downloading started almost immediately and Euge was soon topping the MP3.com Jazz chart.

He signed soon thereafter with Warner Bros. “Vinyl,” his first single from his self-titled Warner Bros. debut, set a record by spending 27 weeks on the R&R charts, eventually ranking at #24 for the year. PLAY DATE kept the trend going with two more #1 radio hits, “Slam Dunk” and “Rewind.” In 2004, Euge Groove's Narada debut, LIVIN' LARGE, spent 68 weeks on the Billboard charts, debuted at #4 and came in at #25 overall for 2004. "Livin' Large," the single, was the #5 most played song for 2004 on the R&R singles chart. "XXL" spent 36 weeks on the radio chart. JUST FEELS RIGHT followed in 2005 and its first single, "Get Em Goin'," was #1 for two months.

BORN TO GROOVE followed in 2007 and featured several chart-topping singles, including “song of the year” for Relgify. His Shanachie debut was in 2009 and included the #1 smash hit title track and the top five single “All For You.” 2011 saw the release of S7VEN LARGE whose title track scored a #1 hit. 2012 brought the release of HOUSE OF GROOVE, which spawned two #1 hits.
When Euge Groove is not in the studio or on the road he finds comfort in being with his family, cooking, swimming, running, playing with animals and gardening. The saxman who makes his home his sanctuary confides, “It is my prayer that when people hear this new music that they will listen and be relaxed through this new journey.”


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Monday, August 11, 2014

Smooth Jazz Chart - Weekly Top 20 - August 11, 2013 #jazz


TW - LW - Artist - Album - (Label)
1 - 1 - Nathan East - "Nathan East" - (Yamaha Entertainment Group)
2 - 2 - Mindi Abair - "Wild Heart" - (Concord)
3 - 5 - Richard Elliot - "Lip Service" - (Heads Up/CMG)
4 - 4 - Michael Lington - "Soul Appeal" - (Copenhagen Music)
5 - 3 - Chris Standring - "Don't Talk, Dance!" (Ultimate Vibe)
6 - 8 - Jeff Lorber, Chuck Loeb, Everette Harp - "Jazz Funk Soul" - (Shinachie)
7 - 7 - Brian Culbertson - "Another Long Night Out" - (BCM)
8 - 6 - Paul Taylor - "Tenacity" - (eOne)
9 - 10 - The Rippingtons - "Fountain Of Youth" - (Peak/eOne)
10 - 9 - Bob Baldwin - "Twenty" - (City Sketches)
11 - 18 - Al Jarreau - "My OldFriend: Celebrating George Duke" - (Concord Music Group)
12 - 11 - Cindy Bradley - "Bliss" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
13 - 23 - Euge Groove - "Got 2 Be Groovin' - (Shanachie)
14 - 12 - Boney James - "The Beat" - (Concord Jazz)
15 - 13 - Rick Braun - "Can You Feel It" - (Artistry)
16 - 14 - Paul Brown - "Truth B Told" - (Woodward Avenue Records)
17 - 15 - Ken Navarro - "Ruby Lane" - (Positive Music Records)
18 - 17 - Jonathan Butler - "Living My Dream" - (Artistry/Mack Avenue)
19 - 22 - Jazzmasters - "Jazzmasters VII" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
20 - 37 - Gerald Albright - "Slam Dunk" - (Heads Up)

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A constellation of friends helps keyboardist Patrick Bradley get heard #jazz

“Can You Hear Me,” due September 23, features guest stars Dave Koz, Rick Braun and Eric Marienthal on the contemporary jazz fusion set produced by Jeff Lorber.
 
To bolster his effort to be heard above the incessant din cluttering our world, keyboardist Patrick Bradley called upon a few high-profile friends on his third album, “Can You Hear Me,” produced by jazz fusion icon Jeff Lorber, which is slated for release September 23 on the Patrick’s Music Factory label. Boil it down further and the desire to be heard by our parents is inherent in all of us, which is the genesis of the title track and first radio single, a plaintive piano lullaby graced with the serene soprano sax presence of Dave Koz on the song inspired by Bradley’s late mother.     
 
Collaborating on their second album together, Bradley and Lorber composed and arranged all ten songs on “Can You Hear Me.” Bradley nimbly emotes graceful harmonies on piano, adds depth and texture via gurgling Moog synthesizer embellishments and uncorks feverish organ blasts with reckless abandon when the mood to pontificate strikes. A variety of jazz visages – fusion, contemporary and smooth - emerge from tracks rooted in R&B that reflect prisms of funk, soul and blues with the deep-pocketed grooves stitched by bassist Jimmy Haslip and drummer Gary Novak. David Mann’s fiery horns and crisp horn arrangements fatten the sound on “Blue Skies,” “Daylight,” “For Her” and “Voyage” with hitman Rick Braun captured blowing away on trumpet on a pair of cuts (“Blue Skies” and “Voyage”) and Eric Marienthal chiming in some swinging sax on a few numbers (“Blue Skies,” “Shoreline” and “Catalan”). Lorber’s keyboard and Dwight Sills’ guitar riff rhythmically throughout the session with Sills and guitarist Michael Thompson dousing kerosene before slash and burn solos. Both Bradley and Lorber solo on the blistering progressive rock thrill ride “North Of Evermore.”                  
 
“I’ve been playing my whole life and I’m trying to be heard in this noisy world as a musician. My mom passed before hearing my last album (“Under The Sun”) including the song I wrote for my (late) father (“Tears From The Sky”). I wonder if she can hear me and my music. I wrote ‘Can You Hear Me’ with her in mind, but it is also a question I ask God as well,” said Bradley, a man of faith who hails from Southern California. “The original album title was ‘All In’ (the first song on the record) because I wanted to dig deeper than ever before. The whole purpose of the album was to make sure that I got all of my musical chops into it and I think we did it.”
 
Bradley’s professional music career began as a member of a rock band (Joshua) signed to Polydor Records. He released his solo debut, “Come Rain or Shine,” in 2006, the title cut hitting the Billboard Contemporary Jazz Singles chart. “Under The Sun” arrived in 2011 and a few tracks from the offering garnered radio play while the album peaked at No. 6 on the Smooth Indie Chart. Over the years, Bradley and Koz have cultivated a friendship with the multimedia sax personality inviting Bradley to perform aboard the Dave Koz Cruise to Alaska next month as well as to open for Koz, Mindi Abair, Gerald Albright and Richard Elliot’s “Summer Horns” concert September 19 in Newport Beach, Calif. Balancing dual careers, Bradley “sunlights” as president of the Southern Pacific region for Whole Foods Market. Additional information about Bradley will soon be available at www.PatrickBradleyMusic.com.
 
The songs contained on “Can You Hear Me” are:
 
“All In”
“Blue Skies”
“North Of Evermore”
“Can You Hear Me”
“Daylight”
“Shoreline”
“Catalan”
“For Her”
“Sierra”
“Voyage”
 

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