Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Jonathan Butler - "Living My Dream" Release on Artistry Music on June 24th #jazz #video

Rising above the struggles, Butler is living his dream

Family, friends - including Marcus Miller and the late George Duke - and an “African Breeze” combine forces on “Living My Dream,” coming June 24 from the R&B-jazz artist.

It took a while for Jonathan Butler to feel comfortable saying it, but the South African singer-songwriter-guitarist’s confidence has grown as he celebrates what he calls “the season of me” and finally admitting that he is living his dream. He tells the story of his life and loves in the eleven original songs that “came from the heart” on his forthcoming Artistry Music album, “Living My Dream,” which will be released June 24. Click here to order "Living My Dream" from

Like Butler’s best material from a diverse, award-winning and chart-topping career that’s spanned R&B, jazz, pop and gospel, “Living My Dream” provides an honest and revealing soulful songbook probing the artist’s passions: God, family and his homeland. He has been taking care of others ever since he was seven years-old when he became a child star and was the first black artist played on white radio stations while growing up under Apartheid. Writing and producing gold-selling albums and international hit singles, the two-time Grammy-nominee’s entire life has unfolded in the public eye. Enduring recent struggles forced him to do a lot of reflection and ponder the type of man he wanted to be. He decided that he was finally in a place where it was time to celebrate his own extraordinary life and accomplishments.
With a much needed push from his daughter, singer-songwriter Jodie Butler, and guitarist-songwriter Dennis Dodd Jr., he wrote music every day before heading into the House of Blues recording studio in Los Angeles to record the material in a live setting “like records used to be made.” Bassist-songwriter-producer Marcus Miller co-wrote “Let There Be Light” with Butler and played on that track as well as on “Be Still,” which Butler wrote with George Duke during a 5-hour visit to the late legend’s wine cellar. Saxophonist Elan Trotman also appears on “Let There Be Light.”
“It’s one of those albums that I really didn’t think I had in me. I had been struggling, going through this emotional period. Last year was a transitional period. Once I got my wind and got back to a place of focus, it turned out to be the best experience for me. I had to be vulnerable to the songs,” said Butler about the essence of “Living My Dream.” “It’s the story of my life and the newness of discovery. These really are the best years of my life.”
Butler wrote or co-wrote ten songs for “Living My Dream,” which is a balanced blend of contemporary jazz instrumentals and R&B vocal tunes. The first radio single, “African Breeze,” is a reboot of an instrumental that he wrote 30 years ago for “The Jewel of the Nile” motion picture soundtrack. It is a brisk, energetic African-hued dancer on which Butler plucks the festive melody on nylon string guitar.
A captivating and impassioned performer, Butler will help launch “Living My Dream” during a summer concert tour at which he will share the spotlight with Grammy-winning guitarist Norman Brown.
Butler takes you into the recording studio and talks about recording “Living My Dream” in his EPK.

For more information, please visit
“Living My Dream” contains the following songs:
“African Breeze”
“Living My Dream”
“Be Still”
“Let There Be Light”
“Heart and Soul”
“Song For You”
“Night To Remember”
“All About Love”
“Sweet Serenade”
“A Prayer”

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Jackiem Joyner - "Evolve" - Released today on Artistry #jazz #video

The evolution continues: saxman Jackiem Joyner releases “Evolve”
Genre-blurring saxophonist Jackiem Joyner stretches his R&B, jazz, hip-hop, funk and gospel alchemy to imaginative dimensions on “Evolve,” his fifth album that was released today by Artistry Music. With his sweet and sticky sax melodies and impassioned horn play front and center, Joyner’s intricate rhythms and audacious soundscapes are equally present day and futuristic. Case in point: the set’s opener and first radio single, “Generation Next,” featuring Joyner and his band ripping through an edgy funk groove with soulful horn harmonies and distorted electric guitar. Order Evolve from

“Evolve” is the first album that the award-winning Billboard chart-topper wrote and produced entirely on his own. Joyner has always had a knack for crafting catchy R&B-pop melodies and his deft touch with honeyed harmonies remains. What changed are the inventive rhythms and textured tracks he’s constructed under his gentle yet ardent horn work. The outer orbital backdrop stands in striking contrast to the organic sound of his sax. Recorded live with Joyner’s touring band, “Evolve” features high-profile contributions from Gerald Albright - Joyner’s Grammy-nominated sax idol while growing up - on “Big Step” and Keiko Matsui - with whom Joyner often tours – who adds haunting keyboard hues to “Europa.”   

Joyner, who has a busy concert itinerary in June and July to support “Evolve,” will celebrate the record release at a May 10 concert at Spaghettini in Seal Beach just south of Los Angeles. To get a taste of his live shows, a performance clip of Joyner & Company performing “Generation Next” was released

Below is a sampling of some of the initial album reviews:
“Evolve is a dynamic, rhythmic, and harmonically rich experience.” – All Music Guide
With Evolve, Jackiem Joyner elevates his game to the next level to stand alongside some of the finest contemporary saxophone players and deservedly so.” – Critical Jazz
Saxophonist Jackiem Joyner is far from complacent and staid in his sound and style, and on his latest album, Evolve, he offers us a well-rounded, ripened and highly-rhythmic performance that is full (of) adventurous surprises.” – Hill Rag
Jackiem Joyner has evolved and is a force to be reckoned with. Welcome to his new world” - ABYSSJazz  
“The album, with eleven original and self-produced tracks, certainly exemplifies Joyner’s evolution as an artist, performer and saxophonist and so far, stands out as one of the most diverse and interesting projects to be released this year.”- Teen Jazz
“Someone not afraid to stretch the limits of what urban contemporary jazz can be while still delivering music that is massively accessible.” – Smooth Jazz Therapy 
”With Evolve, Jackiem Joyner reveals the willingness and ability to share his talent with other sax legends at the forefront of smooth jazz. It's up to promoters and listeners to become familiar with this great genius.” – Smooth Jazz Daily
“It’s been a most delightful and illustrious journey for Joyner since his discovery by saxman Richard Elliot and trumpeter Rick Braun years ago. As he continues on his clear path, he continues to shine and impress. Evolve takes yet another step down that path.” – The Smooth Jazz Ride
“A journey of songs through the evolution of Jackiem Joyner, this is an artist displaying his progression through his work and it is indeed a treasure to know that with each and every project that comes from this musician his continued contributions to the jazz world is worth the wait.” – Smooth Jazz Magazine
For further information about Joyner, please visit

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Curtis Stigers - "Hooray For Love" - Out today on Concord Records #jazz #video

"Rock 'n' roll and jazz share so many of the same artistic bloodlines that it's remarkable the two don't fuse more often into the kind of inspired marriage of visceral clout and intellectual savvy conjured by the singer, songwriter and saxophonist Curtis Stigers." - New York Times

Purchase Hooray For Love

The lines between different genres of music continue to blur, and on Curtis Stigers lastest CD, Hooray for Love, the fusion of rock n' roll, blues, r&b and jazz continue to meld.

Hooray for Love is Curtis Stigers' eleventh album which includes classics from the Great American Songbook including such gems from the repertoire as George and Ira Gershwin's "Love is Here to Stay," Jerome Kern's "The Way You Look Tonight," and "If I Were A Bell," from Guys and Dolls, as well as three songs written or co-written by Stigers, including the title track, "Hooray For Love," "Give Your Heart to Me," and "A Matter of Time." Of his new album, Stigers comments, "On almost all of my Concord records, I've done a standard or two and lot of songs by modern songwriters. This time around, I've flipped it and recorded mostly standards with a few modern songs."

A seamless combination of old and new songs, a classic pop album recorded with jazz musicians and a jazz sensibility, Hooray for Love is a celebration of this universal human condition. "I set out for this album to be like an old Nat King Cole record from the 50's. I've had a lot of people ask me to do more standards, not critics or record companies, but friends. So, I had a running list of songs that I love and have always wanted to record. This time it really made sense."

As with most of Stigers' recordings, he is very comfortable juxtaposing standards with modern songs. In addition to the songs penned by Stigers, Hooray for Love also includes a Steve Earle song called "Valentine's Day," included because, as Stigers notes, "I like songs with stories that are told from a point of view of someone that is flawed, and this narrator is, although he ultimately redeems himself with some very romantic wordplay. I think that, while it's important to keep the Great American Songbook alive, it's equally important to be open to adding to it."

One of the tracks on the album, "You Make Me Feel So Young," made famous by Frank Sinatra features the up and coming French chanteuse, Cyrille Aimée. "Cyrille is a wonderful singer who's in her 20s and I'm in my late 40s so it really works - throughout the track she laughs and pokes fun of me for being old and it's kind of like an old movie, like a Spencer Tracy / Kate Hepburn kind of thing." Another track on the album, "You Don't Know What Love Is," which Stigers learned from a recording by Tony Bennett and jazz pianist Bill Evans, reveals a different perspective on love.

"The guy in this song clearly has been in love and knows what love is, and perhaps he's still in love, but he's lost her. That's what makes it so heartbreaking. My favorite line is: 'You don't know how hearts burn for love that cannot live but never dies.' It takes my breath away."

Hooray for Love Track Listing:

Love Is Here to Stay (George Gershwin/Ira Gershwin)
Valentine's Day (Steve Earle)
You Make Me Feel So Young featuring Cyrille Aimée (Josef Myrow/Mack Gordon)
Hooray for Love (Curtis Stigers/John Sneider)
The Way You Look Tonight (Jerome Kern/Dorothy Fields)
Give Your Heart to Me (Curtis Stigers)
That's All (Alan Brandt/Bob Haymes)
A Matter of Time (Matthew Fries/Curtis Stigers/David Poe)
If I Were A Bell (Frank Loesser)
You Don't Know What Love Is (Don Raye/Gene de Paul)

Purchase Hooray For Love
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Monday, April 28, 2014

Smooth Jazz Chart - Weekly Top 20 - April 28st, 2014 #jazz

TW - LW - Artist - Album - (Label)
1 - 1 - Nathan East - "Nathan East" - (Yamaha Entertainment Group)
2 - 2 - Chris Standring - "Don't Talk, Dance!" (Ultimate Vibe)
3 - 3 - Keiko Matsui - "Soul Quest" - (Shanachie)
4 - 5 - Paul Taylor - "Tenacity" - (eOne)
5 - 4 - Nick Colionne - "Influences" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
6 - 6 - Boney James - "The Beat" - (Concord Jazz)
7 - 7 - Michael Lington - "Soul Appeal" - (Copenhagen Music)
8 - 9 - Jeff Lorber Fusion - "Hacienda" - (Heads Up)
9 - 8 - Brian Culbertson - "Another Long Night Out" - (BCM)
10 - 10 - Steve Cole - "Pulse" - (Artistry/Mack Ave.)
11 - 11 - Dianne Reeves - "Beautiful LIfe" - (Concord)
12 - 13 - Jessy J - "Second Chances" - (Shanachie)
13 - 16 - Ken Navarro - "Ruby Lane" - (Positive Music Records)
14 - 19 - Down To The Bone - "Dig It" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
15 - 12 - Jumaane Smith - "I Only Have Eyes For You" - (Jumaane Smith Music)
16 - 18 - Citrus Sun - "People of Tomorrow" - (Dome)
17 - 14 - Vincent Ingala - "Can't Stop Now" - (
18 - 20 - Althea Rene - "In The Flow" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
19 - 17 - Dave Koz & Friends - "Summer Horns" - (Concord/CMG)
20 - 15 - Andre Delano - "9 Mile Road" - (Woodward Avenue)
Our thanks to smoothjazz.comVisit to view the latest complete top 50 chart. Visit to view the latest weekly chart recap.
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Monday, April 21, 2014

Smooth Jazz Chart - Weekly Top 20 - April 21st, 2014 #jazz

TW - LW - Artist - Album - (Label)
1 - 1 - Nathan East - "Nathan East" - (Yamaha Entertainment Group)
2 - 2 - Chris Standring - "Don't Talk, Dance!" (Ultimate Vibe)
3 - 3 - Keiko Matsui - "Soul Quest" - (Shanachie)
4 - 8 - Nick Colionne - "Influences" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
5 - 4 - Paul Taylor - "Tenacity" - (eOne)
6 - 6 - Boney James - "The Beat" - (Concord Jazz)
7 - 7 - Michael Lington - "Soul Appeal" - (Copenhagen Music)
8 - 5 - Brian Culbertson - "Another Long Night Out" - (BCM)
9 - 9 - Jeff Lorber Fusion - "Hacienda" - (Heads Up)
10 - 10 - Steve Cole - "Pulse" - (Artistry/Mack Ave.)
11 - 12 - Dianne Reeves - "Beautiful LIfe" - (Concord)
12 - 13 - Jumaane Smith - "I Only Have Eyes For You" - (Jumaane Smith Music)
13 - 14 - Jessy J - "Second Chances" - (Shanachie)
14 - 22 - Vincent Ingala - "Can't Stop Now" - (
15 - 11 - Andre Delano - "9 Mile Road" - (Woodward Avenue)
16 - 32 - Ken Navarro - "Ruby Lane" - (Positive Music Records)
17 - 16 - Dave Koz & Friends - "Summer Horns" - (Concord/CMG)
18 - 19 - Citrus Sun - "People of Tomorrow" - (Dome)
19 - 25 - Down To The Bone - "Dig It" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
20 - 20 - Althea Rene - "In The Flow" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
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Jackie Allen - "My Favorite Color" - Releases May 13th, 2014 #jazz #video

 “Her gift is utterly distinctive and even innovative … a masterpiece. It’s revelatory and sounds effortless.” (Billboard)

Long known for the enticing smoky quality of her voice and the natural sincerity of her interpretations, My Favorite Color is Jackie’s long anticipated follow-up studio release to her 2006 Blue Note recording Tangled.

My Favorite Color features two originals and eight standards, reaching from the thirties into the seventies. Harold Arlen and Truman Capote’s “Sleepin’ Bee” swings on tiptoe, replete with its verse and a perfectly melodic Ben Lewis piano solo. An organ and horn infused romp propels Joe Zawinul’s “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy” into a hip soul frenzy. Jackie’s arrangement of Gershwin’s “My Man’s Gone Now” is reimagined as a dramatic modal voyage, featuring an eloquent bowed bass solo by Hans Sturm and a stirring John Moulder electric guitar solo. In classic ballad style, Oscar Levant and Mark Heyman’s “Blame It On My Youth” opens with a goregous extended acoustic guitar introduction that folds gently into Jackie’s profoundly sincere and wistful reading. Hendrix’ “Manic Depression” conjures up Bitches Brew with a Miles-esque muted horn solo by Tito Carillo jousting with Ben Lewis’ organ jabs and Jackie’s Dante’s Inferno scatting.

Steeler’s Wheel 1972 hit “Stuck In The Middle With You” (Rafferty/Egan) is treated to a groove influenced by Horace Silver’s funky hard-bop masterpiece Jody Grind. Burt Bacharach and Hal David’s poignant “A House Is Not A Home” is transformed into a nuanced waltz and re-harmonized by pianist Ben Lewis. Diana (Allen/Schiffman) is an original sweeping waltz, expressing the regrets of trading a free spirited bohemian life for corporate security. Stripping down the harmony of Mel Torme and Robert Well’s “Born To Be Blue,” Jackie’s bareboned arrangement magnifies the despair of the lyric. The disc closes with Jackie’s “Call Me Winter.” The beautiful abstract lyrics were composed with lines shared by the late Illinois Poet Laureate, GE Murray. “If you don’t know where you are, you’ve arrived.”

Allen’s voice is both crystalline and soulful. This is four-hundred-dollar-a-bottle jazz, no cheap imitation. (Rolling Stone)

In the late 80s, Jackie lived in Milwaukee where she worked with organist Melvin Rhyne (Wes Montgomery Trio) for four years before moving to Chicago. There her career blossomed and she released CDs for independent and major labels including Lake Shore Jazz, Naxos Jazz, A440, Red Mark, and Blue Note Records. Jackie recorded three critically acclaimed CDs for A440 and Blue Note: The Men In My Life (2003), Love Is Blue (2004) and Tangled (2006). Her last release, Starry Night (2009), was recorded live with chamber orchestra and features star-themed songs penned by arrangers who have written for such legends and noted artists as Duke Ellington, Frank Sinatra, Doc Severinsen, and Bobby McFerrin.

My Favorite Color was originally intended to be a live recording, but the day before the concert Jackie came down with a rare case of laryngitis. “Fortunately the band and recording engineer were already in town and we decided to record all the instrumental tracks live on stage during our sound check just in case my voice didn’t improve. I managed to get through the concert but the concert recording was useless since my voice was a mess.” The instrumental tracks were left untouched for several years until they were discovered on a hard drive after a move. There were multiple takes of each song beautifully recorded by Steve Weeder and Jackie began working with Tom Larson to lay down the vocal tracks over the best of the instrumental tracks. “I had to anticipate the band, when normally we interact live in the moment, which was a real challenge.” Upon hearing Jackie’s version of “Blame It On My Youth” for the first time, multiple Grammy winning mastering engineer Alan Silverman remarked, “That was the most beautiful recording of that tune I’ve ever heard – and I recorded Dory Previn singing that in the 60′s.”

It may not be easy bein’ green, but Jackie makes the wait well worth it.

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Harvey Mason - "Chameleon" - Releases on Concord April 29th, 2014 #jazz

 Harvey Mason, the GRAMMY-nominated drummer of Fourplay, was one of the cornerstones of Herbie Hancock’s Head Hunters ensemble. Chameleon also features some of the brightest young jazz talents on the scene today, including several NEXT Collective alumni: trumpeter Christian Scott, bassist Ben Williams, pianist/keyboardist Kris Bowers, and guitarist Matthew Stevens.
“..a gem that reminds us why we loved Harvey in the first place!”
“Co-produced by Chris Dunn, Chameleon showcases some of the most talented young musicians in jazz today…Chameleon features seven of the era’s most enduring classics infused with modern day shine, including an imaginative new arrangement of Mason’s signature song and title track. For this new version of ‘Chameleon,’ Mason invited Bill Summers to reprise his famous hinedewho intro to ‘Watermelon Man,’ a song from Herbie Hancock’s Head Hunters LP which Mason played on and arranged.”
“A blend of R&B, urban and cutting-edge jazz, Chameleon takes its inspiration from the title track, which Mason co-wrote with Herbie Hancock. It is a knowing nod to Mason himself, aptly dubbed the ‘Chameleon’ for his uncanny ability to perform so many styles of music.”
“While the personnel includes a handful of the drummers’ contemporaries (Jimmy Haslip, Bill Summers, John Beasley and Jackson), the fresh twist on these tunes is that Mason is playing with some of today’s brightest young jazz stars, some of whom he had not met before the live in the studio recording began.”
“Sophisticated, funky, and polished…Mason adds his own exclamation point with this solo effort that demonstrates his musical genius not only as a member of Fourplay but singularly as a bonafide legend”
Smooth Jazz Ride
“The sound is crisp, the funk is fresh and the lyrical sense of purpose never waivers. Harvey Mason opens a new chapter in his prolific career with arguably his best solo release yet. Still a member of Fourplay, Mason never misses a beat. While the year is still young, Chameleon is one of finest releases across any genre for 2014. You can go home again!” *****

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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Smooth Jazz Chart - Weekly Top 20 - April 14th, 2014 #jazz

TW - LW - Artist - Album - (Label)
1 - 1 - Nathan East - "Nathan East" - (Yamaha Entertainment Group)
2 - 2 - Chris Standring - "Don't Talk, Dance!" (Ultimate Vibe)
3 - 3 - Keiko Matsui - "Soul Quest" - (Shanachie)
4 - 5 - Paul Taylor - "Tenacity" - (eOne)
5 - 6 - Brian Culbertson - "Another Long Night Out" - (BCM)
6 - 4 - Boney James - "The Beat" - (Concord Jazz)
7 - 7 - Michael Lington - "Soul Appeal" - (Copenhagen Music)
8 - 10 - Nick Colionne - "Influences" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
9 - 8 - Jeff Lorber Fusion - "Hacienda" - (Heads Up)
10 - 9 - Steve Cole - "Pulse" - (Artistry/Mack Ave.)
11 - 13 - Andre Delano - "9 Mile Road" - (Woodward Avenue)
12 - 14 - Dianne Reeves - "Beautiful LIfe" - (Concord)
13 - 15 - Jumaane Smith - "I Only Have Eyes For You" - (Jumaane Smith Music)
14 - 16 - Jessy J - "Second Chances" - (Shanachie)
15 - 11 - Bob Baldwin - "Twenty" - (City Sketches)
16 - 25 - Dave Koz & Friends - "Summer Horns" - (Concord/CMG)
17 - 19 - Herb Albert - "Steppin' Out" - (Shout Factory)
18 - 17 - Kim Scott - "Rite of Passage" - (Independent)
19 - 18 - Citrus Sun - "People of Tomorrow" - (Dome)
20 - 23 - Althea Rene - "In The Flow" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
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Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Jackiem Joyner - "Evolve" Releases April 29th on Artizen #jazz

Genre-blurring saxophonist Jackiem Joyner ( takes his R&B, jazz, hip-hop, gospel and rock alchemy to imaginative new places on “Evolve,” his fifth album that will be released April 29. With his sweet and sticky sax melodies and impassioned horn play front and center, Joyner’s intricate rhythms and audacious soundscapes are equally present day and futuristic. Case in point: the album opener and first single, “Generation Next,” performed live in this clip with his band. Joyner and company rip through an edgy funk rock groove adorned with soulful horn harmonies. Pre-order "Evolve" from

“Evolve” is the first album that Joyner, a Billboard chart-topping award-winner, wrote and produced entirely on his own. The experimental second cut, “Europa,” showcases Joyner trekking the outer edge on soprano sax with a gentle assist from keyboard artist Keiko Matsui. Prominent often intertwined bass grooves play a leading role on “Double Bass.” Joyner’s sax unlocks a wealth of emotion on the majestic “Breathe.” The title track rockets through the stratosphere free to fly fueled by a vital sax lifeline. “Born To Fly” continues the adventurous exploration propelled by an aggressive attack replete with distorted electric guitar and shrill turntable scratches.

On the second act of the album with the mood shift signaled by “Interlude,” Joyner mines his R&B roots beginning with “Later Tonight,” a sensual Quiet Storm serenade. Tension builds on “See Through Me” providing a revealing look into the artist’s soul as the layers are slowly and deliberately stripped away.  Grammy-nominated saxophonist Gerald Albright, Joyner’s idol while growing up, duets with the young protégé on “Big Step.” The closing number, “A Gentle Walk On Water,” sets Joyner’s sax amidst a barren yet beautiful piano and string backdrop.

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Monday, April 07, 2014

Smooth Jazz Chart - Weekly Top 20 - April 7th, 2014 #jazz

TW - LW - Artist - Album - (Label)
1 - 1 - Nathan East - "Nathan East" - (Yamaha Entertainment Group)
2 - 3 - Chris Standring - "Don't Talk, Dance!" (Ultimate Vibe)
3 - 2 - Keiko Matsui - "Soul Quest" - (Shanachie)
4 - 5 - Boney James - "The Beat" - (Concord Jazz)
5 - 6 - Paul Taylor - "Tenacity" - (eOne)
6 - 4 - Brian Culbertson - "Another Long Night Out" - (BCM)
7 - 16 - Michael Lington - "Soul Appeal" - (Copenhagen Music)
8 - 9 - Jeff Lorber Fusion - "Hacienda" - (Heads Up)
9 - 13 - Steve Cole - "Pulse" - (Artistry/Mack Ave.)
10 - 11 - Nick Colionne - "Influences" - (Trippin 'N' Rhythm)
11 - 8 - Bob Baldwin - "Twenty" - (City Sketches)
12 - 7 - Paolo Rustichelli - "Soul Italiano" (Med Groove) - (Next Age Music)
13 - 14 - Andre Delano - "9 Mile Road" - (Woodward Avenue)
14 - 10 - Dianne Reeves - "Beautiful LIfe" - (Concord)
15 - 17 - Jumaane Smith - "I Only Have Eyes For You" - (Jumaane Smith Music)
16 - 19 - Jessy J - "Second Chances" - (Shanachie)
17 - 12 - Kim Scott - "Rite of Passage" - (Independent)
18 - 25 - Citrus Sun - "People of Tomorrow" - (Dome)
19 - 23 - Herb Albert - "Steppin' Out" - (Shout Factory)
20 - 20 - Cal Harris Jr. - "Remix: Shelter Island f. Euge Groove" - (CHI Int'l Music)
Our thanks to smoothjazz.comVisit to view the latest complete top 50 chart. Visit to view the latest weekly chart recap.
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Thursday, April 03, 2014

Les Sabler - "Jobim Tribute - Releases April 8th on New Vista Records #jazz

 A meditation on Jobim in the key of jazz
Guitarist Les Sabler pays homage to the Brazilian legend on “Jobim Tribute” due April 8
Before Les Sabler began recording “Jobim Tribute,” which will be released April 8 on New Vista Records, the jazz guitarist-vocalist walked a mile in the shoes of the iconic Brazilian composer known for writing exquisitely poetic romantic standards that popularized bossa nova. An inspired Sabler trekked to Brazil, visited the places Jobim frequented and absorbed the native culture and sounds. He voraciously studied recordings and read stacks of books about Jobim’s life. Sagely he knew that fostering authenticity on a collection of twelve Jobim songs involved more than just playing the right notes on his nylon string guitar or mastering the pronunciation of the Portuguese lyrics. Sabler, who produced the album, recognized that the most important ingredient was to capture the soulful passion inherent in the author’s touching melodies and sensually exotic rhythms. Pre-order "Jobim Tribute" on
The timing of Sabler’s record correlates to two milestones: the 50th anniversary of the classic “Getz/Gilberto” that spawned Jobim’s No. 1 hit “The Girl from Ipanema,” which helped weave bossa nova permanently into the fabric of American music; and the 20th anniversary of Jobim’s passing. When selecting material for “Jobim Tribute,” which is comprised of seven vocal tunes and five instrumentals, Sabler challenged himself by recording some of Jobim’s lesser known gems (“Esquecendo Voce” and “Janelas Abertas”) as well as popular favorites such as “Corcovado,” “Bonita” and “Fotografia.” The first single that was just shipped to radio stations for airplay is Sabler’s rendition of “A Felicidade,” a sweeping wave of joyous melody, nifty guitar fingerplay and an ethereal vocal chorus.        
Produced, arranged and performed in acoustic jazz settings, Sabler was accompanied by keyboardist Clay Perry (Julio Iglesias), acoustic bassist Byron House (Robert Plant’s Band of Joy), Brazilian drummer-percussionist Celso Alberti (Flora Purim, Stevie Winwood) and the late percussionist Joe Lala (CSNY, Bee Gees). Allon Sams scripted string arrangements as did Grammy-nominated arranger Tom Zink, who orchestrated a 4-piece string section that added emotional depth on three selections. 
Sabler explained that “My first trip to Brazil guided me to a deeper understanding of Jobim’s music from the places I visited followed by an immersion of his music, videos and books. During my trip, I was able to learn a lot more about the history of Brazilian music. I explored some of the places where Jobim used to hangout, including the restaurant where Heloisa Pinhiro walked by, who was the inspiration for ‘The Girl from Ipanema.’ I am passionate about this music and made it a goal to master and record it. After working on this project for several years, I am pleased to finally share it.”   
“Jobim Tribute” is Sabler’s seventh album. The Montreal native who studied music at Canada’s Concordia University and at the University of Miami, has created a catalogue of finely-crafted contemporary jazz recordings that summited sales and airplay charts in the U.S. and Canada while garnering award nominations, No. 1 most-played Canadian artist airplay honors and international acclaim. Most often playing electric guitar on earlier works, “Jobim Tribute” is his second consecutive record on which he exclusively plays nylon string acoustic guitar following 2010’s “Crescent Shores.”      
Earlier this week, the Tampa, Florida-based sports fan performed the American and Canadian National Anthems with Marshall Gillon on Opening Day for the Tampa Bay Rays followed the next night by performing the anthems prior to the Tampa Bay Lightning game. With the eyes of the world turning to Brazil for this year’s FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, Sabler’s elegant “Jobim Tribute” is a perfectly timed soundtrack. For more information, please visit
Sabler’s “Jobim Tribute” contains the following songs:
“A Felicidade”
“Corcovado (Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars)”
“Esquecendo Voce”
“Brigas Niunca Mais/Discussao”
“Se Todos Fossem Iguais A Voce”
“Por Causa De Voce”
“Janelas Abertas”
“Chega De Saudade”

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