With his début Mack Avenue Records recording, REACH, pianist and five-time Grammy® Award nominee Christian Sands is stretching into exciting progressive territory. He breaks new ground traversing from the straight-ahead zone into fresh-sounding music. Influenced by a range of styles, from Afro-Cuban rhythms to hip-hop beats to dirty blues with an edge, it pops! That’s impressive for a youngster who is just 27. “The collection here is about reaching new ideas and reaching new music,” he says. “I’m reaching from past recordings to bring in the future, which is really all about finding myself. It’s a chance to express my experience.”
REACH, one more milestone in Sands’ auspicious career that stretches back to his New Haven, Connecticut upbringing. Beginning music classes and composing his first piece at age five, he quickly became a professional by ten. Sands’ was well prepared to attend such prestigious schools as the
Neighborhood Music School and the Educational Center for the Arts in New Haven. He later received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Manhattan School of Music.
The recording is co-produced by both Grammy®-Award winning producer Al Pryor and famed bassist Christian McBride. McBride collaborated with Sands in his Grammy® Award-winning trio, as well as some of his other groups, since 2009. “Upon first meeting Christian, I could feel a cool connection,” Sands recalls. “From when I first sat in with his Inside Straight band, I realized that we think about music in the same way. When I got signed to Mack Avenue, I asked if Christian could produce me, as someone who knows my playing and what I want to accomplish in my music.”
Christian Sands have built a stellar trio here, including bassist Yasushi Nakamura and drummer Marcus Baylor. The album also features guests Gilad Hekselman on guitar, Marcus Strickland on tenor saxophone and bass clarinet, and percussionist Cristian Rivera. He even convinced his producer to make a cameo appearance, bowing his bass at the end of the slow tempo Use Me.
The album ends on a romantic note with a non-original tune, somewhere Out There. Composed by James Horner, Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil. The original recording, sung by Linda Ronstadt and James Ingram, won Grammy® Awards for its appearance in the 1986 animated film An American Tail. “I was looking for a ballad and I didn’t want to do Strayhorn or Porter,” Sands says. “I wanted to play something that was not that familiar. So I was talking to my mother and she said, ‘what about the song from the movie with the mouse that you used to watch when you were a kid?’ She used to sing it to me when I was four or five years old and my dad would play piano. So I told her she was genius; I don’t think this has ever been done as an instrumental. When people hear this, I’m hoping they go, ‘Oh, yeah, I remember this.’”
The end song is yet another example of how Sands shifts musical gears with a variety of styles on REACH. “Actually, my biggest influence in making this album was Michael Jackson’s Bad record,” he says. “There are so many different kinds of tunes on that, so many changes. So that’s what I was setting out to do.”
ABYSS Pick … Reach is cool, smooth, with a lot of groove – highly recommended. A joy to listen to. This one Jazz Diggers you don’t want to miss … ABYSSJazz Magazine
This word has evolved from its original meaning in jazz slang as a sexual euphemism.
- Vagina, the female groove
- Penis, the male groove
- Ass, both male and female groove.
Original sexual meanings are seldom used or understood anymore.
- “Groovin” meant rubbing the genitals in one of the grooves. Used as a simple form of birth control, somewhat similar to withdrawal.
Less sexually oriented meanings are still sometimes used.
- “Hip to the groove” means aware of what gives pleasure; often used as a music term.
- To be “In the groove” means to be in a pleasurable place, musically, socially, or in life or nature. Generally, running smoothly.
- “Groovin’ together” enjoying each other’s company. Appreciating each other. Generally enjoying the situation and the surroundings’
Smooth, Groove, & Contemporary Jazz Airplay Chart
Artists & Music that’s Movin’ on Up
Dr. Phillips Center Presents: Professors of Jazz
Experience some of the best jazz artists of today. These nationally known jazz players swing to a variety of classics and modern adaptations.
With the meet and greet!!!
A Bourbon Tasting Reception with the Artists
Post-show party with complimentary Bourbon and Whiskey tastings, food pairings and your chance to mingle with the Professors of Jazz.
The proceeds of this event go to support local students attending Summer Jazz Intensive on scholarship.
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“A Festival of Headliners”
The Low Country Jazz Festival celebrate community and the creative power of music. We invite the jazz community to explore and share their passion for live music at the 2017 festival.
Since 2008, The Low Country Jazz Festival has brought world-class Jazz musicians to the Greater Charleston area. This year, The Low Country Jazz Festival is hosting an incredible mix of contemporary jazz, classic R&B and soul artists including, Lalah Hathaway, Robert Glasper, Brian Culbertson, Jeffery Osborne, Rick Braun, Norman Brown, Richard Elliott, Jarrod Lawson and international violin sensation Damien Escobar.
Come and experience southern hospitality and outstanding service that is the hallmark of the Lowcountry Jazz Festival.
Whether your passion is shopping, dining or the performing arts you will find it at the Lowcountry Jazz Festival in the greater Charleston, SC area.
… Gerald Albright’s “G” is Bright Music Records’ first CD release! G is a special musical project as it is also Albright’s début CD as an independent artist and as owner of Bright Music Records. G invites you to not only enjoy Albright’s fluency as a saxophonist and flutist, but also the command that he demonstrates on the bass guitar.
Gerald Albright is a Los Angeles, California native. For decades, and through 17 solo CD’s he has wowed us with the sultry yet funky sounds of his compositions. I am crazy about G, and I think you guys will be too. The CD slams with the track Taking Control, where one might describe the track as, Earth, Wind, and Fire meets Michael Jackson. Albright slows down the pace a bit with the sexy, head-bobbing tune called Read Your Mind. He will have your fingers snapping and shoulders jolting to the funky horns and beat box sounds of G and Doug E., a duet with Hip-Hop legend Doug E. Fresh, and it is fresh!
Albright pays homage to two good friends who he has respected throughout his musical career – Bill Withers and Frankie Beverly. He did his rendition of Lovely Day, featuring another good friend of his, the iconic Michael McDonald on vocals; and a MAZE inspired tune called Frankie B. wouldn’t be complete without the funk. Funk-ism will take you out of your seat with its combination of Old School meets Contemporary Jazz. Once again Albright shows off on bass guitar while solidly displaying his skills on alto, tenor, and baritone saxophone.
G is the title of Albright’s latest CD. And, G is the first letter of the word Great which defines both the man and his music. G is jumpin’ my friends; it’s thumpin’ and bangin’. Ooh-we-baby, there’s a lot of great music on this disk. We got Hip-hop, Funk, R&B and of course, Contemporary Jazz. Highly recommended … ABYSSJazz!
… James Kōb brings melody and beautiful arrangements back to the popular music genre… while still keeping it “cool & hip”.
A veteran American composer, lyricist, arranger and producer… Mr. Kōb creates music that spans across multi-national borders as well as focusing on the music scene here in America.
In developing “The James Kōb Experience”, Kob sets a new benchmark in music entertainment… a sort of ‘Broadway-ish, Pop, Jazz, Bossa Nova and a little cinematic music’ affair! In addition, with quite a few pieces in French and Portuguese for our European and South American music lovers. It’s a good kind of different.
So Right has a Zen like feel; easy to listen to, soothing, non intrusive, yet engaging. Delicately pulling you into the music and you don’t resist. The vocal interpretations, arrangements, instrumentation and the lyrics penetrate beyond the physical. So Right taps into ones soul the core self. Highly Recommended … ABYSSJazz Magazine!
On November 4, 2016, Shanahan Entertainment will release Webster’s anticipated label début, Back To Your Heart. Randall Grass, Shanachie Entertainment General Manager states, “Lindsey Webster is an extraordinary vocalist who effortlessly melds R&B and jazz in a uniquely appealing ‘jazzy soul’ style that instantly connects with audiences and the world is already taking notice!” There is an honesty and authenticity that reverberates through Lindsey Webster’s soulful honey-toned pipes. Joining forces with her husband, pianist and musical partner, Keith Slattery, the duo crafts evocative soundscapes that fuse the best elements of R&B, jazz, pop and soul. “The knowledge, style and intuition that Keith brings to my songs is amazing,” says Lindsey of her husband. “Keith and I are extremely passionate and sensitive people who put the same pride and perfectionism into our writing, recording, and producing. Our philosophy is simple, do what feels right. I believe this is what has helped us to forge our own sound.”
The lead single on Back To Your Heart is the album’s title track. It’s an intoxicating and emotive number that sizzles and a song that Webster said wrote itself. “Keith was coming up with the idea for the chorus upstairs on his keyboard one day and I was downstairs cleaning,” she shares. “Once he got the chord progression going and played it a few times, the words ‘You gotta show me the way back to your heart’ popped into my head.” Back To Your Heart is a revealing and intimate portrait of Lindsey Webster’s life. There are songs like On Our Way, about Lindsey’s personal path and the principles of the Laws of Attraction and her heartfelt moving tribute to her mother Barbara, who passed in 2014. One At A Time was inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement and an inspirational speech that saxophonist Kirk Whalum (who guests on the song) gave at one of his concerts about the power of everyday Americans. Lindsey shares, “I realized that one person at a time is how we are going to come to some kind of peace. We have to love and respect and embrace our differences to get to the inner peace we need to create widespread peace.” Lindsey’s mission is to make an emotional connection with her fans. Somewhat of an old-soul, the young singer concludes, “With all the pop tunes out nowadays, literally about nothing, I think it’s important to hold the torch for the artists before us who found it important to write real music.” With the release of Back To Your Heart, Lindsey Webster finds her way into your heart…and this is just the beginning!
Saxophonist Kim Waters’ created his career by writing timeless anthems with insatiable grooves, undeniable hooks and memorable melodies that combine the best of jazz, R&B, funk and soul. Waters’ released his 22nd recording as a leader and twelfth CD for Shanachie, Rhythm and Romance, Friday, June 3rd 2016. He dedicated the album to his inspirations – Kayla and Kimberly. “My daughters are my everything, they are smart, talented and focused. I am proud that they see me as a role model.
Rhythm and Romance finds the saxophonist doing what he does best — creating dreamy melodies, crafting funky dance-inspired originals, immortalizing sultry ballads, and putting his own indelible imprint on timeless R&B hits. Rhythm and Romance showcases Waters’ com-positional prowess and features seven dynamic originals along with three re-workings of hits by Janet Jackson, Sam Smith and DeBarge.
In typical fashion, Waters is like a one-man band playing almost all the instruments on Rhythm and Romance. However, he does get a little help from some friends including guitarist Dave Manley Waters shares, “Dave is a great guitarist who can play any style and he brings the flavor every time I call him.” Waters is also joined by his long-time friend and collaborator, Chris “Big Dog” Davis. He is a super talented keyboard player and a master producer,” exclaims Waters. Along with Dave and Chris Rhythm and Romance unites Waters with vocalist Christi Jones who Waters says we will definitely be hearing more from in the future.
Never one to rest on his laurels, Kim Waters’ artistry continues to grow, as demonstrated on Rhythm and Romance. “When my fans hear the new music, I hope they have a musical journey that brings them joy and happiness and leaves them wanting to play it over and over again.”
Kim, Dave, Chris, and Christi, thank you. Rhythm and Romance defines special moments. Mr. Waters ability to blend jazz, R&B, funk and soul is second to none. Compositions, arrangements, production and skill sets of all parties involved, oo-we-baby! Highly Recommended … ABYSSJazz