ROBERT (DUBWISE) BROWNE | Groovy Love Thing | Electrifying Grooves Records
VANN BURCHFIELD | Rhythms Of Rio | Independent
SHARON MARIE CLINE | This Is Where I Wanna Be | Independent
DR. DAVE & The Housecall Band | Carefree | Hatherill Records
JAZMIN GHENT | Boss | Independent
KENYA | My Own Skin | KenyaMJ Music
NILS | Alley Cat | Baja/TSR Records
QUANTUM JAZZ | Quantum Jazz | Independent
KATJA RIECKERMANN | Never Stand Still | HornStar Records
SHASHATY | Brighter Day | A.H.I. Records
DARBY WILLIAMS | Me | Roc Cartel
JIM ADKINS The Journey Clear Image Records
Though he’s based in Central Virginia and has won numerous awards from V.O.C.A.L. (Virginia Organization of Composers and Lyricists), guitarist Jim Adkins’ picture perfect melodies, tight snappy pocket grooves and soulful blues and rock influences have been heard all over the world, from the U.S. to Europe to Indonesia and Australia. A popular independent recording artist since the late 1990s, Adkins continues to embrace THE JOURNEY on his infectious and dynamic sixth album, whose tracks include the lively, spirited acoustic-driven “Time With You”; the slick, funked-up electric title track; the whimsical old school R&B flavored “The Secret Place”; and a colorful, improvisation-rich venture “Into the Storm.” The Billboard Song Contest winner also includes a graceful cover of Sade’s “No Ordinary Love,” followed by a spirited blues jam that heralds “A New Horizon.” THE JOURNEY is a passionate, musical adventure you won’t want to miss out on!
DENNIS ANGEL On Track Timeless Grooves Records
Dennis Angel made a fateful choice after high school – study music at Julliard or pursue a law degree. He eventually became a well-respected entertainment attorney, but jazz found its way back in 2009, when he recorded “The Wall Street Recession Time Blues.” He made an impact with his multi-faceted, full-length debut TIMELESS GROOVES, and now he’s back, deep in the melodic and grooving pocket again with his latest, ON TRACK, produced by Jason Miles. Energized by the airplay success of the three previous singles from this critically acclaimed collection, the fast rising trumpeter and flugelhornist is feeling a sense of “Jubilation,” which makes the song the perfect choice for his unprecedented fourth single! The album is a sophisticated jazz delight with heavy hitters including Kenny Barron. Angel's ON TRACK to becoming a bona fide jazz star!
CHERYL BARNES Listen to This Barnes & Cabasso Music
The title of jazz vocalist Cheryl Barnes’ new album LISTEN TO THIS is an invitation to enjoy a brilliant collection of songs, interpreted masterfully by this amazing artist, whose extensive resume includes performances with Wynton Marsalis and Quincy Jones on the jazz side, the Clara Ward Gospel Singers, and the Denver Symphony Orchestra. Talk about vocal range and versatility! Ms. Barnes’ voice and phrasing are stunning. I’m especially drawn to the entrancing “Come with Me,” the gently swinging “Like Jazz,” and her latest single, an incredible take on Joni Mitchell’s “Come In From the Cold." Cheryl Barnes’ LISTEN TO THIS is an absolute must-have!
SYLVIA BENNETT From The Heart CD & Greeting Card Out of Sight Music
Let the music be the message! Sylvia Bennett selects her favs from the original album SONGS FROM THE HEART and creates a gorgeous playlist on her stylish, all-in-one FROM THE HEART CD and Greeting Card! Featuring timeless classics from the great American songbook, including “My Funny Valentine,” “Ain’t Misbehavin’,” “As Time Goes By,” “You Make Me Feel So Young,” and more. Perfect for any occasion, Sylvia’s FROM THE HEART is sure to warm anyone’s heart… Valentine’s Day, Mother’s and/or Father’s Day, anniversaries, and birthdays... a lovely way to send your love with flair in this clever jazz-o-gram from Sylvia Bennett. The music is SO good, you may just decide to keep it for yourself, we wouldn’t blame you!
SYLVIA BENNETT It's All About Love Out of Sight Music
Grammy-nominated jazz singer, Sylvia Bennett comes to the table with a hip, luxe new single, “Another Love Song,” featuring her gorgeously pure vocals with modern beats as smooth as a night in Miami! The focus of the song, co-written and produced by Sylvia’s long-time music partner, Hal S. Batt, offers encouragement to never give up on love… as the next love may be the best love! Love, a common theme with Ms. Bennett, will be the focus of her next full album due out in 2016, IT’S ALL ABOUT LOVE will include this riveting new track! Sylvia Bennett mixes her pristine vocal stylings into to a fresh new sonic playground on “Another Love Song,” which is anything but… more like a unique, exciting love song that lends itself beautifully to the contemporary, lifestyle vibe of Smooth Jazz!
DAVE BRADSHAW JR. Jumpstep MOKU Records
Every summer needs a soundtrack and this year the cool, smooth vibe of the joyful “Jumpstep” from Southern California composer and keyboardist, Dave Bradshaw Jr, featuring chart-topping saxophonist Darren Rahn, is a strong contender for being just that! The high-spirited jam captures the essence of the exuberant, sunshine season with in-the-pocket Smooth Jazz grooves and melody! The collaboration comes at a great time for the successful sideman, Dave Bradshaw Jr., who confidentally steps into the spotlight with his own signature sound as he wraps production on his forth-coming album of the same name as this electric, first single! Bradshaw says of Rahn, “To be able to come out of the gate strong and work with someone of Darren’s caliber is like a dream come true.”
ROBERT (DUBWISE) BROWNE Groovy Love Thing Electrifying Grooves Records
One of Jamaica’s most prolific electric guitarists, Robert “Dubwise” Browne – known affectionately as “Dubz” – has toured the world with artists like Shaggy, Diana King and Jimmy Cliff and performed at Jamaica Jazz & Blues and Reggae Sunsplash. He’s also recorded with Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers. Now, with his third solo album, he’s got a GROOVY LOVE THING going on, infusing these ten bright, infectious and groovy tunes with everything from jazz to reggae. His crisp, melodic lead lines lend emotional depth and heartfelt intensity to a compelling blend of tender, soulful ballads and exquisite, feel-good jams. Anyone looking for a little spirit of the islands will also enjoy this collection of breezy, tropical song excursions. Jump into this GROOVY LOVE THING, you'll love it!
VANN BURCHFIELD Rhythms Of Rio Independent
Perhaps best known in the saxophone world for setting a new Guinness world record for circular breathing (besting former champ Kenny G), Birmingham based composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist Vann Burchfield launches his career as a solo instrumentalist with an intoxicating, rhythmically inviting and freewheeling exploration of the RHYTHMS OF RIO. The award winning saxophonist created the joyous, buoyant musical escape to Brazil – featuring eight seductive instrumentals and two lush vocals by his wife Teresa – to help overcome the temporary loss of his home due to a natural disaster. Likewise, Smooth Jazz fans going through a time of crisis, and even those just wanting to enjoy some fresh musical sunshine, should hop on down and explore the RHYTHMS OF RIO!
TRACY CARTER Dimensions Of A Musician Independent
He started writing songs when he was 13 years old… In 1993 he wrote a million selling, Top 10 hit, he was 19 (“Gansta Lean” by DRS). Written and performed with Tony! Toni! Toné!, Chaka Khan, Wendy Moten, Wayman Tisdale among others… Tours regularly with Dave Koz and Gerald Albright; Richard Elliot can’t say enough about this man (check Richard’s website), and he was nominated for a Grammy on the Dave Koz and Summer Horns project! Meet keyboardist, composer, arranger, vocalist, Tracy Carter, an extraordinary talent and creative musical force! On an average, the prolific musician writes four songs a day in his studio and we’re excited to announce the arrival of his solo recording, DIMENSIONS OF A MUSICIAN! In his own words, this music is “soulful, inviting, and tantalizing”! The project flows with great melodies, as you'd expect, gorgeous grooves and beats and rich textures with seductive vocals. Tracy Carter has an intimate relationship with music, hear the soul of the artist on DIMENSIONS OF A MUSICIAN!
SHARON MARIE CLINE This Is Where I Wanna Be Independent
Celebrated and critically acclaimed L.A. based vocal stylist Sharon Marie Cline has released a live album and holiday project in the past, but those were simply prelude to her glorious emergence as a recording artist with this an exquisite and romantic collection that allows her to declare, on the dreamy and sensual, flute spiced title track, one of two lush originals among 10 well chosen interpretations of classics, that “This Is Where I Wanna Be.” Cline’s triumph lies in her effortless breezing from easy swinging (“Happy Talk,” an inspired choice from SOUTH PACIFIC) to Bossa (“Love Dance,” “Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars”) to blues (“You Don’t Know What Love Is”). When you listen, you too will declare, THIS IS WHERE I WANNA BE!
MITCHELL COLEMAN, JR. Soul Searching Soul Revelation Music
Emerging bassist Mitchell Coleman may be SOUL SEARCHING on his dynamic and driving debut, but he doesn’t take long to find some tasty, infectious urban jazz and funk grooves. Influenced by greats like Marcus Miller, Stanley Clarke and Larry Graham, the multi-talented musician and composer kicks off the 12 track, two interlude set by stamping a fun and fiery “Passport” to a place filled with buoyant R&B/jazz fusion. While establishing himself as a force to be reckoned with, he also pays homage to Earth, Wind & Fire (a dreamy “That’s The Way of the World” featuring Pam Vincent) and the late great Joe Sample with an eloquent take on “When Your Life Was Low” featuring Dionyza Sutton. There’s plenty of soul in SOUL SEARCHING!
With his emphasis on RUMBA FLAMENCO and exotic and organic world music textures, Juno award winning guitarist Jesse Cook has been of the most influential forces in Nuevo Flamenco music for two decades. Truly embodying the empowering universal musical spirit of its title, the Canadian musician’s latest collection ONE WORLD is his most erotic and intensely complex collection to date. It’s an in depth, exotic global journey interweaving funky beats, dusty electronic textures, syncopated handclaps, thick “dubby” basslines, fiery percussion and rich touches of violin and sitar. Jesse dazzles on tracks like the dramatic, soaring, intensely rhythmic soul-stirrer and first single, “Shake,” the trippy and hypnotic high energy blast “Bombay Slam” and the vibey, industrial and exotic “Steampunk Rickshaw.” Jesse Cook’s vision of ONE WORLD is a whirlwind of exuberant joy!
More energy, more swagger, more Darius! RETRO FORWARD is a respectful glance backward toward the legacy of R&B, soul and pop while propelling full speed ahead toward the future of contemporary music, including Smooth Jazz, neo soul, hip hop and more! Mostly originals, this new album will deliver so well for you that you’ll forgive the charismatic young talent, for making you wait so long since 2010’s ON A MISSION. Produced by Grammy-winning songwriter and producer Antonio Dixon (half of FaceTone w/Babyface, Beyonce, Celine Dion, Janet Jackson) and Blu2th (Chris Brown, Jordin Sparks, Boys II Men). 11 Songs featuring today’s hottest talent, Dessy Di Lauro, Terry Dexter, Eric Dawkins, plus the sax phenom sings beautifully on Barry White’s “Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love”! Don’t miss the delirious cover of Pharell’s “Happy” and the sensational, jazz-pop dance smash, “Broke Down.” RETRO FORWARD is a joyous, jubilant, funkified, fortified recording that will ignite your soul!
JAMES DAWKINS Smile For Me Independent
Miami based keyboardist, composer, songwriter and producer James Dawkins Jr. brings an exciting array of professional experiences to SMILE FOR ME, his dynamic full-length debut sunshine infused with Jazz, Soul, and R&B! The Miami native has shared the stage and toured with everyone from Mike Phillips and Robert Glasper to Chico DeBarge and Doug E. Fresh. His high octane joy ascends from the get-go on the spirited, sax and key driven title track and continues on gems like the infectiously funky “Love Song (You)” (featuring inspiring female vocals), the buoyant, perfectly titled “Groove Time” and a blazing, irrepressible cover of Stevie Wonder’s “Boogie On Reggae Woman.” When Dawkins asks, “Will you Smile For Me?” how can you not?
To paraphrase the title of one of Dr. Dave’s previous recordings, once again, ‘the Doctor is in’ stirring up a spirited storm of healing, soulful melodies and electric guitar funk on his perfectly titled album CAREFREE. The prolific, world renowned musician includes some freshly re-imagined covers of classic tunes – most notably, his reggae infused, island spin on Bobby McFerrin’s “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” – however, Dr. Dave is also an exciting composer. He whips up fresh, infectious magic on tracks like the sensual, wind in your hair opening title track “Carefree”; an atmospheric, pocket groove driven ballad that truly “Feels So Good”; the breezin’ George Benson influenced “G.B. Style”; and the moody, romantic, old school vibin’ “Sylvia.” Listen to Dr. Dave & The House Call Band and you’ll truly feel CAREFREE!
D. EDWARD Love Is 10th & Clay Records
Singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist, D. Edward is back with a groove so funky, a beat so strong and heart so deep on LOVE IS… a brilliant, soul pop follow-up to 2011's LITTLE RED BOX, the album that introduced the soul crooner to the Smooth music community. A small, handful of singers have such distinctive character to their voices, that list would include Darryl Hall, Robbie Robertson, Darius Rucker and perhaps more current, Ray LaMontagne… soulful, rugged and sexy! LOVE IS cleverly blends the joy of jazz, the freshness of funk and the style of soul to deliver an incredibly moving collection of songs. The title track is already proving that D. Edward has big fans at radio… the sensual duet with Jenna Lavoie, "Show Me," the chilled melancholia of "Pretty Eyes" and the 70's throwback vibe on "Mighty Love" all help make this a SmoothJazz.com Hotpick!
Back in the day, when critically acclaimed, chart-topping, San Francisco Bay Area Jazz vocalist, Victor Fields was starting his music career, working a day job and performing music on the side, the legendary Lou Rawls and entourage caught Victor's live performance in a small club in Oakland. Rawls called Fields “the man with the golden voice,” and inspired Victor to launch a full-fledged recording career. Rawls once said the immortal words, “Soul is Truth,” and Victor Fields fulfills that reality brilliantly on highly anticipated release, THE LOU RAWLS PROJECT - A sultry, bluesy and easy swinging set featuring lush, sophisticated re-imaginings of ten Rawls classics. In addition to the first single, the smooth and romantic “Let Me Be Good To You,” the singer lends his graceful caress to the balmy, gently swaying “Lady Love” (featuring producer Chris Camozzi on guitar), the smoky “Let’s Fall In Love All Over Again” and Rawls’ Philly SOUL trademark classic, “You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine.” It’s not braggin’ on himself, baby, to call Fields’ THE LOU RAWLS PROJECT a true masterpiece.
Smooth Jazz has a new star... check out the uplifting new release from the extremely versatile, Texas-based guitarist Al Gomez, CASA GROOVE on Shade Records featuring all kinds of feel good energy blended into his Smooth Jazz including R&B influences, Neo Soul, Funk, traces of Tejano and killer vocal harmonies, making for a spicy, fresh vibe! Think Santana meets Larry Carlton! The Pecos, Texas native studied music at West Texas State University, Sul Ross State University, and The Recording Workshop of Cincinnati, he also graduated from a two year Master Guitar Certificate Program from Berklee College of Music in Boston! One of the most exciting collections to hit our musical landscape, CASA GROOVE is filled with hooky, original compositions that sound like world-class hits including his latest singles, the infectious, soulful, vocal-infused "Devotion" and the glistening instrumental, "Erica." Al Gomez is in the casa!
THERESA GRAYSON World Blue L2L Records
A multi-faceted instrumentalist and musical visionary who switches off lead voices between soprano and tenor saxes, flute and vocals, Theresa Grayson was inspired to create WORLD BLUE - a powerful, inspiring and expansive exploration of cultures - by her years teaching elementary school students about music from around the globe. On this 13 track set featuring Marion Meadows and Michael Ward, the Houston based performer’s high energy fusion takes the listener on a journey celebrating the vibes of different regions. Her itinerary includes Eastern Asia (“Crane’s Dance”), France (with Grayson’s French vocals on “Je t’adore”), Latin America, Jamaica, Africa and India. World Blue also features covers of “Radioactive,” “Sway” and “We Are The World,” which features a 40 piece children’s choir and 80 piece adult church choir. It’s time to get out and paint the WORLD BLUE!
VINCENT INGALA Coast To Coast Independent
Still in his early 20s, chart-topping saxophonist and multi-instrumentalist Vincent Ingala recently moved from his native New England to Los Angeles to headline the weekly live broadcast brunch at the new Spaghettini and the Dave Koz Lounge in Beverly Hills. As the title of his 3rd album points out, he’s truly a COAST TO COAST sensation! Ingala continues to bring a fresh, young perspective to instrumental music via his colorful, innovative vibe blending Smooth Jazz, Funk, Soul and R&B. His star-studded, horn drenched new album finds him vibing with trumpeter Lee Thornburg, British jazz trombonist Dennis Rollins (of BadBone & Co.), Peter White, Roberto Vally and DW3. The set gets off to a danceable, thumping start with the infectious title track before taking a deliciously “Nasty” turn with some slow simmering sax-trombone tradeoffs and harmonies. Ingala showcases his tender, romantic side with the elegant old school soul ballad “Love on Hold.” Fans from COAST TO COAST will love this!
Drawing on her family’s Latin heritage, Jessy J has been infusing an exotic, sassy and sensual world music vibe into the genre since her debut hit “Tequila Moon” in 2008. The soulful tenor saxophonist’s recent travels to Cuba (on a SmoothJazz.com adventure) and Africa inspired her most freewheeling travelogue yet on her 5th album release, MY ONE AND ONLY ONE. Working once again with producer Paul Brown, whose hypnotic guitar licks are the perfect complement to her emotional melodic leads… Jessy is all about adventure on the bluesy, tropical moods on album opener “Una Mas” and the funky, brass fired 1st single “The Tango Boy.” The multi-talented artist also showcases her incredible flute skills as well as vocals on the sizzling “Paraiso Magico” and “Cuba.” The originals are pure magic, but she also works wonders with three perfectly chosen covers, including the Cure’s mesmerizing “Lovesong,” and a funk-rock-jazz version of “Strawberry Letter 23.” You’re certain to make THE ONE AND ONLY ONE you listen to for a while!
With over three million albums sold, four-time Grammy-nominated saxman Boney James is one of the best selling instrumental artists of all time – and has been a Smooth Jazz superstar for over two decades! Rather than rest of his laurels, the innovative artist and producer keeps looking ahead, mixing R&B old school cool with fresh, contemporary production vibes inspired by his love for today’s top artists. The result on his 15th CD is truly FUTURESOUL! The crunch-funk groove and sizzling horn textures driving the infectious melody of the first single, “Drumline” are masterminded by Boney with top R&B producer Jairus Mozee. Other irresistible tracks are the mystical, dreamy soprano tune and vocal “Watchu Gon’ Do About It,” the moody, atmospheric “Hand In Hand” and the lightly funky, sonically adventurous title track, co-written and co-produced with neo soul star Dwele. 23 years after his debut, Boney’s still got the FUTURESOUL of instrumental music in his ever-soulful sax!
Continuing to bring the thunder from Down Under on his new 5-track set MR. JONES, Australian bassist, songwriter arranger and performer Wayne Jones, a renowned session musician who launched his solo career in 2006, keeps that perfect balance between tunes that are lush, melodic and sophisticated and others that showcase his freewheeling and wildly energetic ways. Working with top genre stars like Rick Braun and Grammy-nominated keyboardist Philippe Saisse, who is featured on "5 To 6," Jones creates a dynamic array of moods, from the bright and brassy new single "A Day at the Beach" to the strutting and funky "Get Up" and light and breezy "Sweet Melody." Another highlight is Jones’ buoyant Latin excursion "The World Keeps Turning." You’ll enjoy experiencing the wild, wonderful world of MR. JONES!
KENYA My Own Skin KenyaMJ Music
A fast growing jazz-kissed soul sensation who is artfully wooing a growing base of admirers around the world, Chicago vocalist and songwriter Kenya makes her U.S. debut with MY OWN SKIN – which, upon its early 2015 release in Europe, was a #1 smash on the UK Soul chart for four consecutive weeks. Kenya’s family life and successful career as a clinician and educator delayed her emergence as an artist, but now the multi-talented performer – who counts everyone from Stevie Wonder to Billie Holiday as influences - is quickly finding her niche as a sensual, emotional vocalist sharing what she calls the “many layers…and spaces within me.” Her deep 15 track debut finds her feeling mighty comfortable in MY OWN SKIN.
MICHAEL LINGTON Soul Appeal Copenhagen Music
One of Smooth Jazz’s most dynamic and reliable hit makers, the Danish born saxman blasts through his usual in the pocket vibe for a freewheeling, live in the studio immersion into the heart of 60’s and 70’s Memphis soul. Co-writing with renowned R&B/pop producer Barry Eastmond and playing with a handpicked group of his favorite session musicians (including Paul Jackson, Jr. and Ray Parker, Jr.), Lington complements a batch of infectious, deep grooving originals including his latest single, "Taking Off," with two well chosen King Curtis classics, “In The Pocket” and a horn section-infused “Memphis Soul Stew.” This spirited collection also includes two fresh old school style vocal ballads sung by Kenny Lattimore (“Gonna Love You Tonight”) and Ryan Shaw (“Leave Me You”). SOUL APPEAL is fresh, yet familiar!
One of the greatest instrumentalists of our time… The two-time Grammy-nominated jazz and R&B saxophonist and flautist Najee, has earned two platinum and four gold albums and has collaborated with Quincy Jones, Prince, Steve Wonder, and Herbie Hancock. This musical visionary embodies contemporary and fusion jazz… sweet and seductive playing, rich melodies and progressive ideas. YOU, ME, AND FOREVER, his latest release, features world-class musicianship on covers and originals, including Frank McComb (Buckshot LeFonque), James Lloyd (Pieces Of A Dream) and Robert Damper (Kenny G). The highly inspiring collective was recorded in part, in Incognito’s studio in the UK with audible influences, especially on the captivating “Give It All We’ve Got.” The project’s single, “Fly With the Wind,” will reclaim the dynamic performer’s place at the top of the charts and don’t miss the evocative covers of Ambrosia’s “Biggest Part Of Me” and Jobim’s “Wave.” Timeless Najee at the top of his craft!
KEN NAVARRO Unbreakable Heart Positive Music Records
From one of the most respected and critically acclaimed contemporary jazz guitarists in the world, comes an artful and heartfelt new collection of songs. Ken Navarro’s 22nd album to date, UNBREAKABLE HEART, includes eleven new compositions, all gorgeous, all deeply moving, and all featuring Navarro’s brilliant acoustic and electric guitar work! Delicate and introspective at times, and upbeat and exhilarating at other moments in the recording… the instrumentation is rich and diverse and we’re keen to mention that there is a lovely tribute to actor Robin Williams (“Robin Fly Away”) and a notable nod to jazz bassist Jaco Pastorius (“Jaco Smiled”). From jazz to smooth, from classic to pop, the chart-topping, award-winning musician is certain to steal hearts, enthrall fans and capture new admirers with UNBREAKABLE HEART!
NILS Alley Cat Baja/TSR Records
A prolific, chart-topping Smooth Jazz hit maker with so many airplay classics that he merited a 2014 compilation called JAZZ GEMS : THE BEST OF NILS, the versatile Munich born, Los Angeles based composer, guitarist and producer launches into the next phase of his multi-faceted career with ALLEY CAT, his most explosive, infectious and sonically creative album yet, on Baja/TSR Records. Incorporating more horns than ever and beautifully showcasing his expanding skills as a sound designer and keyboardist, Nils’ 12 sensational, ultra-melodic tracks offer a range of musical vibes for everyone’s tastes, from retro soul-jazz and high energy hypnotic funk to sensual, silky ballads. Like a sly ALLEY CAT, Nils is always adding fresh new sounds to keep his music hip, slinky and sexy!
With a sensual, romantic vibe driven by her distinctive sultry vocals and fresh interpretive style, Fabiana Passoni won the 2012 Brazilian International Press Award for Best Brazilian singer living in the U.S. and was also selected as Talk 2 Brazil’s 2012 Person of The Year. On her highly anticipated new EP INNER BOSSA, the beautiful and charismatic songstress offers a sweet, intimate seduction via a blend of clever covers and soul-drenched originals. The collection includes graceful, dreamy takes on Aretha Franklin’s classic “Daydreaming” and Spandau Ballet’s classic 80’s ballad “True,” in addition to the lovely, self-penned, whispery ballad “Remember My Name” and easily rhythmic “Mouvance.” There’s no better way to connect with your INNER BOSSA than through the music of Fabiana Passoni!
NELSON RANGELL Blue Independent
He is truly one of the most diverse and exciting performers in the genre, equally adept at soprano, alto, and tenor saxophone, as well as being a genuine virtuoso on flute and piccolo. Nelson Rangell offers up, simultaneously, RED, a gripping, sax-soaked contemporary jazz adventure, and BLUE his sparkling new collection of flute recordings. Blue is a musical exploration of tremendous depth and broad vision with beautiful melodies and spiraling improvisations featuring very special guest Bob James. According to Rangell releasing BLUE at the same time as RED is an attempt to do something unique and to sincerely engage listeners in his musical vision. "I'm a flutist as much as a saxophonist and, after all these years and 17 CDs, I wanted to try to tell another side of my musical story in a more full way on that instrument." Ranging from whimsical (“Dizzy”) to profound (Maurice Ravel's "Le Tombeau De Couperin”) BLUE gracefully and mind-blowingly swirls jazz, pop and classical together with creative abandon.
NELSON RANGELL Red Independent
In a sea of saxophonists, there is only one Nelson Rangell - Daring, compelling, and heartfelt. Fans of contemporary jazz are quite familiar with this extraordinary talent, he released eight CDs with GRP Records garnering chart-topping airplay in the 80’s and 90’s, and recorded with The Rippingtons, Chuck Loeb, Patti Austin, the GRP All-Star Big Band, featured on Don Grusin’s Grammy-nominated album, THE HANG, among numerous other accolades. RED, Rangell’s dynamic, sax-centric new recording, part of a tandem album release with BLUE, his flute and piccolo musical masterpiece, is a full-throttle adventure with bold and persuasive originals including the first single, the rocketing “Point Of Departure,” and the slammin’ “The Red Pill,” balanced by honest and haunting ballads such as “Matters Of the Heart” and “Some Next Grace.” Two albums from one mad-skilled musician, Nelson Rangell makes a big statement with this unprecedented maneuver… fully embracing his independence as a Global recording artist!
Brilliantly fusing silky smooth soul and jazz licks with edgy urban vibes and blistering funky blues, renowned Danish guitarist Soren Reiff – whose style critics have compared to George Benson, Larry Carlton and Robben Ford - is in the mood for some explosive GRATITUDE. His eclectic new collection features an all-star cast of American jazz greats – including bassist Jimmy Haslip, keyboardist David Garfield, drummer Gary Novak and others. Reiff is used to working with legends. A veteran session musician and Musical Director for many top Danish TV shows, he has jammed with everyone from David Sanborn, Chaka Khan and Mike Stern to Randy Crawford and Robert Palmer. You’ll be thankful for all the excitement of GRATITUDE!
PAOLO RUSTICHELLI Euro Nights (Soul Italiano) Next Age Music
The European Smooth Jazz star does it again! Hit-maker, ‘one man band,’ and multi-instrumentalist, Paolo Rustichelli releases an exciting, 70’s-infused, summer gem with charming riffs and enticing solos that captures the essence and sensations of the Mediterranean. His recent string of Top 10s have been a part of a musical exploration of the enchanting seascapes and relaxed lifestyle of southern Europe… with ‘Euro Nights,’ the creative composer reaches a musical milestone, perfectly blending a funky rhythm section with a piano melody, guitars, and sunny solos which are pure, Euro-Latin Smooth Jazz, a smooth hymn if you will, to the joy of life! It’s understandable why Carlos Santana, Miles Davis and many other Superstars and music icons revere and love Paolo Rustichelli’s music. Immerse yourself in “Euro Nights,” an elegant, sophisticated, starry, colorful Mediterranean experience! Included in the long awaited, forthcoming album SOUL ITALIANO!
With a stage name like “Sax O’Groove,” multiple horn master Andreas Büchel sets our expectations high, then transcends anything we could have imagined, infusing TOGETHER with his emotional and powerfully explosive, jazz and pop straight from his unpredictable musical heart and mind. He’s a true sax powerhouse, but he’s not making his magic alone! Aside from introducing us to his wild musical musings, Sax O’Groove vibes with some of our favorite artists, including Rick Braun on the soaring, retro soul-jazz tune “Love You More," Darren Rahn, with the sly and soulful “Keep It Smooth," Brian Culbertson blasting into the horn-drenched Jazz/Funk fusion of “Jungle Groove," along with Michael Lington, NILS, Shilts, Marqueal Jordan and others. Sax O’Groove has sax appeal!
SHASHATY Brighter Day A.H.I. Records
Inspired by years of on-stage experience with the brightest of stars including Carlos Santana, The Mavericks, Kirk Whalum and Dave Koz. ShaShaty’s own 5-piece band opened for legends the likes of The Bee Gees, Peter Cetera, Gloria Estefan and George Benson! ShaShaty explodes on to the scene with this exciting, fresh sound that is truly original! His A.H.I. Records debut, BRIGHTER DAY is a soul-drenched, smash hit with high energy, sweet and pure saxophone performances with soaring melodies and genre-blending curves. The first single, “Dream Ride” is like a top-down, moonlit drive, while “Let’s Go!” and the title track are upbeat, mood enhancer’s with cool vocal accents and “Late On 91” will soulfully set your spirit free! It’s clear to see why ShaShaty has so many fans around the world… and tons more on the way!
STEPHANIE SPRUILL It's a Jazz Day Spruill House Music Production
This multi-faceted force of vocal nature brings to her first true JAZZ album an extensive history as a session and touring vocalist and stellar reputation as a vocal and artist development coach and author of “17 Points To Longevity in Show Business.” Like her expansive career, Spruill engages many different influences – including R&B, CONTEMPORARY URBAN JAZZ, TRAD JAZZ and BRAZILIAN – to create a musical journey that allows her to tap into her full vocal range. Her splendid mix of originals and classics includes a sassy, brass-infused “Fever,” an intimate “Round Midnight” and the moody, poetic title track, featuring Brenda Russell and Patrice Rushen, which cleverly weaves decades of jazz legends into a celebration of the art form. When you’ve got “A Metheny morning and a Whalum afternoon…Tea with Thelonious and a Yellowjacket Moon,” you know IT’S A JAZZ DAY!
SEAN SULLIVAN Hereafter SonyRed
Sean Sullivan’s relaxed musical approach and smoldering vocal style will draw you in like a Sunday morning. HEREAFTER is a compelling collection of jazz, blues, pop and soul. On this smoothly eclectic album, produced by Matt Pierson, the New York City singer, songwriter and guitarist delivers gorgeous originals with intelligent and moving lyrics, plus cool, soulful covers. The Sullivan-penned, "Don't Get Me Started," the first Smooth Jazz radio single, has a Marvin Gaye vibe with a Boz Scaggs jazzy-bluesy slant along with the moody and alluring, "Wash My Soul," which features tasty saxophone and melancholy flute. Covers include Michael Franks' "Jive," Bob Marley's "Waiting In Vain," and Aretha's "Until You Come Back To Me." If you dig the music of the aforementioned Franks, and Scaggs as well as James Taylor, this gem of a talent is for you... Sean Sullivan is the star to watch rise and rise, from now 'til the HEREAFTER.
THE B. CHRISTOPHER BAND High Tide Independent
Exceptional, electric guitarist B. Christopher’s renowned as a top television composer, with some 7,000 song placements and counting! His work has made it possible for him to vibe with superstar rhythm cats, bassist Nathan East and drummers Anton Fig and Kenny Aronoff on his highly anticipated debut recording HIGH TIDE. You’ll find a showcase of artful fusing between melody, dynamic technique and skilled improvisations on the dreamy, seductive and atmospheric opener “Best Laid Plans,” the uplifting, easy funk-rock influenced “Islamorada” and the hypnotic blues-rocker “Flashback.” Fans of Carlton, Nils and Nick Colionne will also dig Christopher’s crafty high-toned licks on “Eights” and the bubbling energy of “Fifth at Six.” Contemporary jazz guitar reaches a new HIGH TIDE with the welcome addition of B. Christopher!
The cover of The Sax Pack’s exuberant new funkfest POWER OF 3 says it all, with genre superstars Steve Cole, Jeff Kashiwa and Kim Waters laughing and joyously toasting their first collective studio jam since 2009. But as the title of the buoyant, summery first single reminds us, the magical horn action thousands of fans have heard live for years had to get back in the studio “Sooner or Later.” Celebrating ten years of smooth and snazzy sax tradeoffs and combined brassy sizzle, the new collection is soulful, sexy, and swanky, full of toe-tapping lines, infectious hooks and uplifting vibes that continue to make them the life of the party. Though styled after The Rat Pack, the dynamic trio celebrates everything from “Disco Here” to the late 80s bounce of Rick Astley. A truly remarkable return to form that celebrates the POWER OF 3! – Jonathan Widran
WALDINO Let It Flow WaldinoMusic.com
The wonderment of Waldino continues with his most connected and creative album to date, LET IT FLOW! Sexy vibes, alluring lyrics and swirling electro grooves surround the title track, which comes in two flavors here, one with vocals and the other as a radio-friendly, jazzy re-mix! The musical craftsman has outdone himself on this exciting new project with 17 original tracks… Waldino has forged together an eclectic yet cleverly cohesive mix of sweet, Chill Jazz as heard on the single, “Let It Flow,” Electro Fusion, and “It’s A Beautiful Day,” plus Electro Dance which is pumpin’ on “Let’s Go” and “Hot Stuff,” Groove Funk as featured on “I Got The Groove, and “e-Motion,” as well as a splash of roadhouse blues on tunes “Chillin’ In The Ethereal Plane,” and “Funk Love Magic.” LET IT FLOW is in reference to going with the flow in life, in love and of course in laughter, “Trying hard to let loose all the things that bother us then we go out and let it go, then we go out and let it flow…” Amen.
DARBY WILLIAMS Me Roc Cartel
Tall, blond, bodacious and sensual, newcomer Darby Williams commands the stage just as she commands her dynamic vocal range, with artistic creativity and a personal touch, Signed to Roc Cartel by label Founder/President Ray De La Garza, Williams captures the essence of perhaps the greatest collaborators in jazz, Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn! With her debut album ME, such titles as “Lush Life,” “Mood Indigo,” and “Do Nothin’ Till You Hear From Me”, echo the sweltering notes and delicate compositions of this illustrious partnership. Darby’s interpretations are both thoughtful and intoxicating. The delicate nature of her phrasing, and obvious feel for American Songbook material is immediately evident. The single, "No One Knows" features Darby with two-time Grammy Award winner Peabo Bryson in a soulful duet. Bryson acclaims, ”Darby is a fantastic vocalist with command and range. I've sung with the greats and she's more than holding her own."
With the release of the soulful, exuberant and rhythmically diverse TEMA, Antonio Adolfo’s dynamic, solo follow-up to his 2014 Latin Grammy nominated O Piano de Antonio Adolfo, the legendary Brazilian pianist, arranger, producer, composer and educator embarks on his sixth decade as a recording artist. The Rio De Janeiro based maestro, whose songs have been recorded by, among others, Sergio Mendes, Stevie Wonder, Herb Alpert, Earl Klugh and Dionne Warwick, invites listeners on an invigorating, intoxicating exotic adventure full of toe tapping fun and tender sensuality. Its TEMA (theme) is magic!
When Tony Bennett calls himself a fan of your phrasing because it’s “perfect,” then it’s time for the entire world to know about you! Such is the case with Australia’s Gregg Arthur… the sexy, charismatic crooner, who now calls California home, is prominent on our radar here at SmoothJazz.com with his affable adaptations of the Great American Songbook as well as “New Standards” and originals! The productive entertainer is currently writing and recording with legendary pianist Tom Ranier (Barbra Streisand, Natalie Cole, Michael Feinstein), which promises even bigger things for this awesome Aussie, however, his latest recording (8th album), ONE ROMANTIC NIGHT, which features his hit single, “You With Me,” has our full focus with an absolutely charming video of the song featuring Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant (a must see!) as well as crisp covers of gorgeous classics, “The Way You Look Tonight,” “Misty,” and “Dindi” to name a few. ONE ROMANTIC NIGHT adds up to a smash hit for Gregg Arthur!
John Basile is unique as an electric guitarist in that his two chief influences are not fellow axemen – but instead, Frank Sinatra and Bill Evans. His resulting ear for phrasing and improvisation serves him brilliantly on this eclectic 11 track set plumbing the deeper emotional soul of Beatles classics via his mastery of different string tones, MIDI programming and affection for many styles. He brings a balmy Brazilian vibe to “Fool On The Hill” and “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” and turns “Can’t Buy Me Love” into a classic funk slo-jam. You’ll really enjoy your stroll down PENNY LANE!
KENYON CARTER Game On CurvePoint Media
Overcoming a serious car crash related arm injury that could have derailed his musical dreams, Atlanta saxophonist Kenyon Carter continues to show the power of perseverance, declaring GAME ON with this high octane blast of world class contemporary jazz. A follow up to his hymn driven tribute Songs For My Father, this collection – which features Chuck Loeb’s sizzling electric guitar on the title track - is a hard hitting musical snapshot that combines the artist’s love for pop, R&B, funk and elements of straight ahead amidst the Smooth Jazz. Get your groovin’ GAME ON with Carter’s infectious flow!
TY CAUSEY Cause & Effect Tyvonn Records
Over the past ten years, silky and sensuous vocalist Ty Causey has established himself as a venerable, recording and touring artist, performing with Najee, opening for everyone from Boney James and Babyface to Peter White. Equally acclaimed as a GOSPELl/R&B singer, Causey invites us to “Leave the Drama” behind and enjoy a picture perfect, seductive blend of Sensual soul and smooth jazz. SmoothJazz.com Founder, Sandy Shore was so taken by the sexy, soulful crooner's showmanship and hit maker craftsmanship, she affectionately dubbed him “the Bruno Mars of Smooth Jazz.” This collection features intimate, easy groovin’, old-school gems like “It’s Gotta Be Love, “If We Got Love” (both featuring sultry saxophonist Igor Gerzina) and “Just Another Love Affair.” It adds up to a magical CAUSE & EFFECT!
DAVID CORREA New Moon Baja/TSR Records
A popular Bay Area guitarist renowned for his explosive global fusion of Latin folk, Rumba Flamenco, French Gypsy and Middle Eastern music, David Correa is recording under his own name after many years as leader of David Correa and Cascada. The dynamically rhythmic, deeply melodic nylon string master’s NEW MOON explores his passion for the Southwest. His journey includes the soulful, spirited “Hacienda,” the whimsical, percussive “Sandstorm” (highlighted by clapping “palmas”) and the exuberant, high energy “Paseo De Pueblo.” Dancing and dreaming under the NEW MOON is encouraged as you listen!
D. MILLS Love Potion 2 D. M. Records
We’ve all heard of “Love Potion No. 9,” but artist, composer and multi-instrumentalist d. mills, who began touring at age 15 with Gospel great Shirley Caesar, offers something even more hip and potent with his latest single “Love Potion 2.” Dubbing his vibe 'Nu Smooth Jazz,' the pianist, bassist and guitarist brings thumping, clapping joy to his lively and melodic, piano and sax driven, seductive new single, featuring angelic female vocals, reminding us that “Love is strong - Love carries on.” Recipe for a romantic night must include d. mills "Love Potion 2."
THE DANGLING SUCCESS Life Is Good Independent
The five veteran musicians who comprise The Dangling Success may have resumes that include legends like Chaka Khan, The Isley Brothers, Don McLean and The Shirelles, but their combustible, sax, guitar and keyboard driven vibe makes them the ultimate groove, R&B, Smooth Jazz band. While everyone raves about their live performances, they move heart, feet and spirit just as well on LIFE IS GOOD, a perfectly titled album they dedicate to the optimists of the world. Like them, their titles are all about having a good time – from the buoyant grooves of “Drinking Margaritas” and the playful, jangling “Feelin’ Frisky” to the ultimate Jazz/Funk jam “Pineapple Kush.” No question about it, LIFE IS GOOD!
DOTSERO Telltale Cinderblock Records
Named for a small Rocky Mountain town in their native Colorado, Dotsero (means “unique” according to Native American legend) is guitarist David Watts and saxophonist brother Steve Watts, together they have been setting contemporary jazz on the edge for over 25 years, rocking out at major festivals and their home venue Jazz@Jack’s. Their latest release Telltale weaves an eclectic, melodic and rhythmically explosive story that brings together elements of Smooth Jazz, Rock, Funk, Americana, Folk, R&B, Latin and Country. The sax and guitar driven thrill ride includes the playful funk of “Deja Vrai,” a passionate reassurance that “It Won’t Be Long,” the wistful ballad “Thoughts of You,” a bluesy electric romp through “The Greasy Bass Song” and the high octane Latin jam “Steppin’ Outta Th’ Boat.” Dotero’s latest set is a TELLTALE sign that they’re here to be heard and we couldn’t be more delighted to have them in our mix!
JAZMIN GHENT Boss Independent
This buzz about saxophonist Jazmin Ghent is getting strong and stronger... The talented, rising star has catapulted from her first recording, a critically-acclaimed 3-song EP, released in early 2015, into a full album early summer recording, featuring mostly originals. Her live appearances schedule continues to grow as she tours with her own band and the popular Jazz In Pink all women ensemble! She's also performed with Brian Simpson, Kim Scott and.Ben Tankard. Ms. Ghent has already enjoyed her first taste of airplay charting success this year with the EP single, “Boss,” which she rolled over as the title of this exciting full album debut! There’s no question as to why people are responding to Jazmin Ghent the way they are, her saxophone tone is rich and that of an old soul, while her songs are fresh and creative and her appearance is vibrant and glowing with a small yet mighty stature! With a full scholarship, Jazmin received a full scholarship offer to Berklee and Florida State University, she attended the latter at received her Bachelors Degree in Music Education/Jazz Studies, then earned a Masters Degree from Tennessee State University. This extraordinarily hot, new sensation is moving so fast that her feet are barely hitting the ground!
All aboard the Groovexpress… featuring a vintage vibe with original material that encompasses jazz, blues, funk and more on their latest release UKRAINIAN DOLL. The internationally acclaimed band is based out of New Zealand and delivers upbeat, fun, sensual jazz with a retro spin that will inspire you to throw swanky parties and hand shake your martinis while playing UKRAINIAN DOLL as the soundtrack! The album is receiving critical acclaim and airplay around the world. A band of highly accomplished individuals with deep resumes and guitarist/vocalist Mykeljon at the helm of this exciting ensemble, creating music that is ageless and timeless by combining genres with fresh flavors to attract music lovers worldwide! Groovexpress is the new face of Smooth Jazz!
SKII HARVEY Don't Look Back Vie Publications
The woman with an unbridled soul, a distinguished voice and a powerful pen… has returned with a dynamic 3-song EP featuring a trilogy of deeply moving, soulful tunes with jazz-infused richness! Award-Winning, Australian Singer/Songwriter Skii Harvey is a cross blend in style between the iconic Tina Turner, the jazz goddess, Ella Fitzgerald and a dash of gumption like that of powerhouse popster, Annie Lennox! Skii’s voice has caught the attention of music royalty over the years, including Sting, however, it’s her songwriting that’s earned her the respect of Billboard Music Awards, UK Songwriting Awards, Australian Songwriter’s Association, as well as the L.A. Music Awards! On DON’T LOOK BACK, the songstress is more determined than ever lyrically… she shares a window that pierces into her very being on, “All That Glitters,” “Second Chance,” and “Don’t Bother Me.” For those who have ‘been there,’ this cathartic recording of soul, jazz & renewal will be volumized to the maximum!
Saxophonist Curtis Haywood may have titled his new album SMOOTH INGREDIENTS, but those laid back vibes are just the foundation for a dynamic, multi-faceted musical recipe designed to feed the heart, body, mind and spirit. Long in touch with the healing power of music, the former member of jazz fusion ensemble Joshua – who has shared stages with greats like The Temptations, Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes and Kirk Franklin - stirs up a wild swirl of rhythmic energy that artfully blends Jazz, R&B, Latin, Reggae and even some colorful tropical funk. Haywood provides SMOOTH INGREDIENTS for the perfect musical listening experience.
JOSIE JAMES That Jazz NJM Media Inc
Grammy-nominated singer, Josie James brings an exciting resume as an A-list session vocalist to her burgeoning solo career and the release of her sweet, soulful and sultry debut THAT JAZZ. She’s performed with the greatest pop, jazz and R&B artists and producers of our time, including Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Earth, Wind & Fire, Phil Collins, Joe Sample, Al Jarreau, George Duke, Stanley Clarke and David Foster. A master romantic balladeer, Josie’s seductive voice beckons on the atmospheric “Coming Back to Your Love,” the moody, retro soul title track and the thoughtful, understated “Out of Time.” Her debut is all THAT JAZZ and so much more!
Terje Lie (pronounced "Terry Lee") knows a good team when he's got one. Collaborating on the second project in a row with the writing and production team of keyboardist Jeff Lorber and Yellowjackets' bassist Jimmy Haslip, the Norwegian born, Los Angeles based saxophonist stirs up the perfect high energy blend of pop, R&B and jazz fusion here. Stocked with playful, solid grooves like the funky opener and hit, "Storm Skies" as well as the album's latest chart-racing single, "Bright Moments," which are both hooky and melodic! You also need to know that this album is a classic "player's album" where inventive improvisation and explosive jamming reign throughout. Lie saves the most unpredictable ride for last, blowing hard with his cohorts amidst the explosive rock energy of guest guitarist Michael Landau as they navigate the wild "Jungle." Lots of BRIGHT MOMENTS to enjoy throughout! Bold moves for Terje Lie, we expect big things from this talent!
BYRON MILLER Psycho Bass Byron Lee Miller Studio, LLC
Throughout his four decade career, Detroit bassist Byron Miller has brought the coolness and funk to a lot of “late greats” including Marvin Gaye, Whitney Houston, Joe Sample and Luther Vandross. Emerging from a 12-year recording hiatus with an expansive, deep bottom, intensive album, with a title that doubles as his new musical persona and mission statement, Byron blesses us with three of the last sessions from the late great George Duke, including a slowed-down, emotional twist on Stevie Wonder’s “Higher Ground.” With an exciting guest list that includes veterans Ndugu Chancler (drums), David T. Walker (guitar) and Sheila E. (percussion), Miller balances fierceness with heartfelt emotion on the atmospheric, old school, soul-jazz flavored single, “U Must Be Crazy,” then turns to Duke-esque classic, mellow fusion on “Spoken Funk.” Miller also includes a pair of moody and meditative gems in “Apples & Oranges” and the atmospheric “Eyes.” Lunatic for the low end? Don’t miss PSYCHO BASS!
Don’t let Gary Palmer’s elegant suit and tie on the cover of his album LOVE ME AGAIN tell the whole story... he’s all about steppin’ out and having some sweet, soulful Urban Jazz fun. Alternating between soprano and tenor, the versatile NYC born and raised, South Florida-based musician and songwriter stirs up the sultry romance on the breezy, easy groovin'' “Love Me Again” and “Stay With Me,” a balmy vibe is the perfect backdrop to his rich tenor-driven emotion. Another romantic highlight is the sultry, Earth, Wind & Fire-influenced “Yes I.” In the mood? Listen to LOVE ME AGAIN again and again!
PEET PROJECT Love Beagle Beat Records
When they say, “All you need is LOVE,” I’m certain the reference is in regards to the 4th independent album release from one of our favorite musical discoveries, Hungary’s Peet Project. While still in their 20’s, the ensemble features highly skilled, artfully creative musicians, who consistently push the Contemporary Jazz movement forward! At the helm of this multi-media, high-energy mix of Jazz, Funk & Pop is the uber talented, Péter Ferencz (Peet), who leads the band with great command and presence providing soulful violin and textured vocals. Voted ‘Debut Artist of the Year’ at the prestigious 2013 Catalina Jazz Trax Festival, Peet Project is sure to add to the awards list quickly with LOVE, as it’s garnering upward movement on radio airplay charts and quickly securing the boys line-up listings on jazz happenings in Europe and the States. From the recording’s current single, the catchy, “Jazz & Wine,” to the hit, “Night Is Falling,” to my favorite track, the pop-infused, “Feel Alive,” LOVE is all you need… at least for now!
QUANTUM JAZZ Quantum Jazz Independent
Contemporary jazz takes a spirited, eclectic leap forward with Quantum Jazz, a powerhouse four piece ensemble out of Denver whose swirled passions for funk, Latin, rock and smooth urban jazz was influenced by the wildly creative fusion jazz of the 70's and 80's. Each member is a veteran of various touring straight ahead and smooth jazz groups. Fueled by the tight, swanky grooves of Scott Fitzgerald (bass) and David Young (drums), the soaring electric guitar of Bill Kerr and the lush, beautiful alto and soprano saxes of Jim Arter, Quantum Jazz’s brilliant, multi-faceted debut is perfect for those who like jazz with an edge!
CECIL RAMIREZ Party In The Back Music Solutions SMG
Well known for his performances at Brian Culbertson’s Napa Valley Jazz Getaway, elegant funk pianist Cecil Ramirez creates a dynamic contemporary style rooted in a classic, R&B throwback vibe on a mix of covers and originals. A dual celebration of soulful sensuality and high octane grooves, PARTY IN THE BACK rolls with big name invites like Culbertson (featured on a wild jam version of Michael Jackson’s “Remember The Time”), Michael Lington, Darren Rahn, Phil Denny and Adam Hawley. Ramirez’s lush ivories provide the melodic thrust on the bright, bouncy “J Street,” the dreamy, laid back “Weekend in Napa” and the perfectly titled, divinely disco-fied “Party in the Back.” Keep the fun front and center and find the PARTY IN THE BACK!
KATJA RIECKERMANN Never Stand Still HornStar Records
Long before Katja Riekermann launched her solo career, the swanky, soulful and bluesy saxophonist was a multi-media sensation, appearing on TV’s Ally McBeal and in the film Star Trek: Nemesis, touring as lead sax with Rod Stewart and honing her chops with everyone from Dave Stewart (Eurythmics) to Brooks and Dunn. The title of her third album NEVER STAND STILL perfectly describes its infectious mix of Motown soul, deep emotion, and sexy, swanky funk (as on the hit single “Walkin’ The Dog”). Vibing with special guests like Joe Bonamassa and Arturo Sandoval, Riekermann ensures that you’ll NEVER STAND STILL!
The next generation of Smooth Jazz has a visionary… welcome to the inspired world of saxophonist Sam Rucker and his soulful and passionate new album TELL YOU SOMETHING! This unique blend of Jazz, Soul, Gospel and Hip Hop, is a collaboration with sax star, Euge Groove and features special guests Norman Connors, Bobby Lyle, Tom Brown and Alyson Williams. Nearly three years in the making, every song is moving with nonstop, positive energy and rich production. The latest single, “Love's Melody," is an enthralling, sax-drenched smash! The project includes brilliant collaboration with Norman Connors and Euge Groove featuring Bobby Lyle and Alyson Williams. The saxman who’s played with Smooth Jazz stars such as Peter White, Ronnie Laws and Phil Perry is telling you something, we highly recommend that you listen!
ROCCO VENTRELLA Another Time Delilah Records
Known for fast cars, beautiful people, sexy food and extraordinary fashion, Italy is also home to world-class, contemporary jazz recording artists, including one of our favorite saxophonists, Rocco Ventrella! No stranger to Smooth Jazz, he’s performed all over the world, over 200 shows in 30 countries in front of hundreds of thousands of music fans! With prior genre successes, including 2005’s TRIBUTE TO GROVER WASHINGTON, JR with the hit cover of “Winelight, Ventrella has steadily been gaining ground as a true musical force. His passionate playing, as well as clever and catchy compositions, make his exciting new album, ANOTHER TIME, his best work to date, featuring special guest vocalists Ilaria de Robertis and Kenya Hathaway. Stocked with thrilling originals (plus an evocative cover of Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me”), Rocco’s collection of sax-steeped funk and smooth gems, rocks our jazz world!
Fast rising award-winning Hungarian saxophonist Zolbert launched his career in 2009, when he put together a Grover Washington, Jr. Tribute band to commemorate ten years since the legend’s passing. The incredible success of this group throughout Budapest and then Switzerland led to this Tom-Tom Records debut ONE, a slamming, infectious set of in-the-pocket urban jazz tunes produced by Péter Ferencz from the popular, Hungarian Smooth Jazz band, Peet Project. The title of the first single “Smile” captures the track’s mix of robust energy and playful charm, while “Frappe” adds mystical atmosphere to its propulsive melody and grooves. Inspiring, youthful new music coming from Central Europe these days and as the name of another energetic album track, reminds us, Zolbert’s debut is ONE we can enjoy “Everyday”!