Thursday, September 28, 2006

Victor Fields | "Thinking Of You" - 10/17/06

When vocalist Victor Fields entered the recording studio earlier this summer to record his fourth album for Regina Records, he set out with the intention of making a smooth jazz album. In the studio with his producer Chris Camozzi, multi-instrumentalist Nelson Braxton, jazz keyboard pioneer Jeff Lorber, saxophone sensation Richard Elliot and flugelhorn master Rick Braun, the grooves couldn’t help but turn out funky. Fields’ Thinking of You album is slated for release on October 17th. While the special guest artists are smooth jazz stars, Fields’ velvety vocals are soulful and his phrasing is elegantly jazzy.

Fields gives new life to “Lovely Day,” the sunny Bill Withers classic that will be the first single serviced to smooth jazz radio at the end of this month. Fields is not out to make you forget the original. His gift is in taking a great song and making it his own. His version is familiar, danceable, sophisticated and smile-inducing. The album contains seven other covers and two originals, both of which were co-penned by Lorber. “Walking In Rhythm” is slowed to an alluring mid-tempo groove before Elliot blows the track up with a fiery sax solo. Braun’s flugelhorn adds ambience and mystique to the haunting and sultry “Creepin’.” As for the original compositions, “It’s In Your Vibe” is an urbane R&B track and “Thinking of You” is a seductive romancer. This is definitely an album for the grown and sexy. Stylistically, Fields is somewhat like an endangered species, a gifted crooner recording classy adult music in the mold of such iconic singers as Luther Vandross, Nat King Cole, Al Jarreau and Will Downing.

“Whether I’m singing traditional or contemporary jazz, R&B, pop or what even might be considered as show tunes, I’ve tried to constantly broaden my repertoire and stretch in new directions,” explained Fields. “I honestly don’t really know what smooth jazz is. We - including Chris (Camozzi), a fantastic bunch of musicians, and myself - tried to be true to the music and true to the songs we selected. The test is always whether or not I can bring something fresh or different vocally to the mix. With each album that I’ve recorded, I think I’ve demonstrated growth and have taken a positive step forward towards coming into my own as a song stylist.”

This is the third go-round for Fields and Camozzi. Camozzi also produced Victor (2005) and 52nd Street (2002), the latter of which featured appearances by Lorber, Chris Botti and Gerald Albright. Fields’ debut disc, Promise (1999), was produced by Grammy-nominee Kashif. The Bay Area resident has received praise from respected media outlets including USA Today, Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times. For additional information on Fields, please visit www.victorfields.com.

Victor Fields’ Thinking of You contains the following songs:

“Lovely Day”
“It’s In Your Vibe”
“Yearning For Your Love”
“Somebody Loves You Back”
“Thinking of You”
“Butterflies”
“Walking In Rhythm”
“For The Cool In You”
“Creepin’”
“What’s Going On”


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