To borrow the ultra-cool title of Brad Alexander’s new EP, STRAIGHT UP, the veteran musician delivers the grooving and melodic goods, mixing up the joyful funk and sensual romance - starting with the high energy title track which was produced by Adam Hawley and features Donald Hayes on sax. Alexander works his nimble magic by including re-imagined romantic R&B classics from The GAP Band and Freddie Jackson, alongside his fresh, colorful originals. One of his titles slyly acknowledges how long his fans have been waiting for a follow-up.
A versatile keyboardist and bandleader whose ensemble The Reggie Buie Group has been a popular mainstay in the Winston-Salem area for over 15 years, Reggie Buie continues making infectious waves in Smooth Jazz with his latest single, a sparkling and sensual re-imagining of the Babyface composed, Tevin Campbell early 90s #1 R&B hit and Soul Train Award winning “Can We Talk.” Though the dreamy vocal hook keeps the track hopping, ultimately, it’s Reggie’s dazzling melodies and improvisations on both piano and gospel/blues infused organ that sets this apart from many other Smooth Jazz covers of classic urban pop hits.
With the release of his 2017 breakthrough album SWEET DREAMS, and now his soaring, eminently grooving single “Lakeshore Drive,” saxophonist, renowned educator and veteran studio musician Ves Marable is carrying on a sacred jazz tradition in his highly musical family. His pop/R&B influenced Smooth Jazz, urban vibe may be different from pianist Fate Marable (Louis Armstrong, Red Allen) and drummer Larance Marable (Charlie Parker, Dexter Gordon, Chet Baker), but his towering passion and emotional intensity add joyfully to the legacy. Ukranian guitarist Oleg Kuznietsov adds extra electric soul-jazz energy to this instant drive time classic.
Truly embodying the American dream sought by his Haitian immigrant parents, the Miami saxophonist fully embraces and embodies the title concept of his debut EP, SOARIN’ with a slate of high energy, robustly played melodies, grooves and brass-fired jams. Though Labossiere is new on the Smooth Jazz scene, he brings a vibrant, eclectic history to his emotionally intense solo artistry – including leading his own band, D-Jazz Funk, playing everything from be-bop to tribal funk and spending 17 years (including several as musical director) with one of South Florida’s top R&B ensembles, the Valerie Tyson Band.
Embodying the title of his cool-breezy and sensually funky new album, veteran keyboardist Jody Mayfield knows a little something about DOING THE DO – an expression meaning, “if you’re going to do something, do it well.” In addition to working with top hip-hop producers, he’s performed with the likes of Dizzy Gillespie, Grover Washington, Jr. and James Lloyd. Stirring up snappy grooves, hypnotic keyboard melodies and dreamy atmospheres, he invites several special guests – including saxman Walter Beasley – to a mix that blends the best of his stylistic worlds, with the intention of promoting positive vibes in response to these difficult times.
A true musical citizen of the world, pianist/keyboardist and composer Arie Salma was born in Israel to Spanish parents, grew up listening to flamenco, African and Mediterranean Music, leads the flamenco jazz group Sonido and now exotically graces and grooves us with his wild, freewheeling new album BRAZILIAN MUSE. Vibing with top, all-star jazz session cats and Brazilian vocalist Teka, Salma jams on everything from funked up electric fusion and seductive blues to lilting yet sassy Bossa Nova, complementing his lively piano work with the hypnotic, classic styled keyboard vibes of organ and Fender Rhodes.