Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Seven-time Grammy nominated Jazz saxophonist, Kirk Whalum, performs live, Saturday, September 4, 2010 at the 31st Annual Detroit Jazz Festival for The Woodwind and Brasswind’s live webcast. To take advantage of this amazing opportunity and hear one of modern jazz’s finest musicians, tune in from 9:00 to 10:30 p.m., EST. Whalum, a native of Memphis, Tennessee, first gained wide notice in the mid-‘80s through a partnership with Bob James. That collaboration produced 3 well-received albums, including his 1988 break-through outing, And You Know That! Whalum went on to record hits that ranked at the top of the Billboard Contemporary Jazz Chart, earned Grammy nominations, and won him a Stellar Award. Kirk Whalum’s music collection and his podcast 2010 Bible in Your Ear are both currently available online. Whalum’s performance at this year’s Detroit Jazz Festival is a tribute to one of his principal musical influences—influential R&B artist Donny Hathaway. The eldest daughter of the legendary Mr. Hathaway (who passed away in 1979), Lalah Hathaway, will make a special guest appearance as the key vocalist during Whalum’s set. Whalum and Lalah will be backed John Stoddart on keyboards and vocals, Braylon Lacy on bass, Kevin Turner on guitar, and Marcus Finnie on drums. Whalum brings his own voice to the stage while celebrating Hathaway’s life and musical stylings.

Whalum was recently named president and CEO of the Memphis-based Soulsville Foundation as he takes over for longtime Soulsville head Deanie Parker. Parker originally retired from her post in late 2007, but returned last year in an interim capacity after the departure of her replacement, Marc Willis. In addition to Whalum's appointment, Memphis businessman Mark Wender has joined Soulsville as the foundation's chief operating officer. The 51-year-old Whalum is no stranger to Soulsville, having grown up in the famed South Memphis neighborhood and having served as the Stax Music Academy's artist in residence since 2006. "I felt I was already invested in Soulsville on so many levels," said Whalum. "And so it was a matter of asking myself, 'Is this something you can do?' And the answer was yes." "I just really wanted to qualitatively invest -- more so than I was doing as artist in residence -- in the Soulsville kids and community," said Whalum. Although Whalum will continue to record and tour, his new duties at Soulsville will mean a change in his performance obligations. "I'm 51, and I've been out here traveling for 25 years or more, and I've gotten to the point where I'm actually ready to scale back a little," said Whalum.

Monday, August 30, 2010


Legendary singer Jack Jones, best known for his Grammy-winning vocals for Wives and Lovers and Lollipops and Roses, releases the next chapter in his long history of making hits, Love Makes the Changes: The Lyrics of Alan and Marilyn Bergman, out on August 3rd, 2010. Jack Jones, noted the “best jazz singer in the World,” by Judy Garland, “THE greatest ‘pure’ singer in the world” by Mel Tormé and “One of the major singers of our time” by Frank Sinatra, is one of the most recognizable artists in the world. During the 60’s, Jack released his first of many hits Lollipops and Roses, soon followed by Wives and Lovers, She Loves Me, Lady, The Race Is On, What I Did For Love, and the Grammy nominated Impossible Dream. These songs paved the way for his musical career spanning over five decades and encompassing more than sixty albums, including Grammy nominated Jack Jones Paints a Tribute to Tony Bennett. 

A double Grammy winner, Jack performs around the globe to sold-out audiences in venues ranging from Jazz clubs to the London Palladium. Whether he performs with his trio or full Symphony orchestra, his musical perfection, vocal passion, phenomenal breath control and impeccable phrasing all unfailingly illustrate why he stands with the luminaries. From the thematic threads of his shows to his ability to make the largest halls intimate, Jack Jones is the very definition of a complete and total entertainer.

Love Makes the Changes: The Lyrics of Alan and Marilyn Bergman, was created as a tribute to the lives and shared love of Jack’s good friends and celebrated songwriters, Alan and Marilyn Bergman. During their distinguished career, their songs have been nominated for sixteen Academy Awards, for which they have won three: "The Windmills of Your Mind" in 1968, "The Way We Were" in 1973, and the score for "Yentl" in 1984. "Windmills" and "The Way We Were" also earned Golden Globe Awards, and "The Way We Were" earned two Grammys. Among their songs are: for Frank Sinatra "Nice 'n' Easy;" for Ray Charles "In the Heat of the Night," for Fred Astaire "That Face," " You Don't Bring Me Flowers," "What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?," "So Many Stars," "The Summer Knows," "Where Do You Start?," "On My Way to You," "You Must Believe In Spring," to name but a few.

Jack explains the motivation behind the release, “For years, my dear friends Alan and Marilyn Bergman have had the ideal loving and pure relationship, truly sharing almost every ounce of life. I call them: "The Masters and Johnson of Romance.” So I wondered, ‘How could they possibly perceive what it feels like when the music doesn't keep playing?’ Well, on this CD We pay tribute to the most perceptive and creative couple I know. They have inspired me to put many of their wonderful creations into one of my weak story lines…Each of these song tells part of the story, most of which you and I have lived through. You write your own story as you follow the songs, and even if it doesn't turn out to be much of a book, it will be one hell of a score.”

Track Listing:
1. That Face
2. It Might Be You
3. I Won’t Believe My Eyes
4. Nice ‘N’ Easy
5. The Windmills of Your Mind
6. In Another Life
7. The Summer Knows
8. Where Do You Start?
9. Medley: the Way We Were / How Do You Keep the Music Playing?
10. On My Way To You
11. Love Makes the Changes
12. What Matters Most


Thursday, August 26, 2010


Continuing with his celebrated, award-winning devotion of bringing music to fans of all ages across the globe, famed number one hit maker and artist Bobby Caldwell is now hosting mornings 6-10 am on Timeless Cool Radio. Joining current Timeless Cool afternoon and evening singer/song writer hosts Steve March-Torme’ and Janet Planet, Bobby brings a background of international live performing and studio recording to the Timeless Cool morning audience. Well known for his classic, “What You Won’t Do For Love”, Bobby’s music has been recorded and sampled by more than 100 artists. His songwriting skills include hits for himself as well as Chicago, Boz Scaggs, Peter Cetera and Amy Grant, Neil Diamond and Al Jarreau. Drawing from his vast repertoire of rousing R&B, intimate smooth jazz stylings, and big band songs, Bobby’s has devoted his entire life to song writing, recording and performing. He has toured His vast catalogue ranging from pop to soul to big band epitomizes the variety and diversity of the Timeless Cool mix. Timeless Cool blends classic and contemporary artists and songs that are carefully selected to produce a blend not shared with existing formats in any market.

Scott Gilreath, President of Radio Affiliate Services & Syndication (RASS) who is syndicating the format nationally says “the balance of artists, like Michael Buble and Diane Krall who get limited or no airplay, help to balance the appeal to a younger adult demo allowing Timeless Cool to offer a “wider variety” than existing formats and voids excessive repeats of music found on other radio stations. Since the announcement was made on New Year’s Eve that Timeless Cool would be available for national syndication, response has been strong from broadcasters wanting to do something “different” in 2010. Broadcasters in over 30 markets have expressed interest for both AM and FM stations. Whether they need a format to replace another providers product or they’re just tired of being “another flavor of oldies, AC or country, etc.” duplicated in their marketplace, broadcasters are reacting positively to Timeless Cool.” The new Timeless Cool format, delivered on AMC-8 (by Clear Channel Satellite) and received on X-Digital, began airing immediately on southwest Florida affiliates, WMYR (Ft. Myers) & WCNZ (Naples-San Marco).

Timeless Cool Music

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


Decca Records has announced the single release of "If It Wasn't For Bad," available August 24th on iTunes and all digital retailers. The highly anticipated single is the first to be made available from The Union, the collaborative album with Elton John and Leon Russell to be released October 19th in the U.S. on Decca (October 25th in the U.K. on Mercury Records). The album marks the first time these iconic artists have worked together since 1970."If It Wasn't For Bad," written by Leon Russell, features vocals by Elton John and piano and vocals by Russell along with an extraordinary band bringing a bold rock/country sound organically crafted by these true musical legends. Produced by Oscar and multiple-Grammy winning producer T Bone Burnett, The Union was recorded live in the studio with Elton and Leon on dueling pianos. The album features a variety of musical genres from R&B, soul, gospel, country, pop and rock. The 14-track disc includes selections written by Elton and his lifelong lyricist Bernie Taupin, as well as the combined incomparable songwriting team encompassing Leon, Elton, Bernie and T Bone. Leon first met Elton in 1970 when he attended Elton's first ever U.S. show at the famous Troubadour in Los Angeles. The meeting heralded the beginning of a long friendship and a mutual appreciation between the two artists. "In the late '60s and early '70s, the one piano player and vocalist who influenced me more than anybody else was Leon Russell," Elton said. "He was my idol." The pair went on to tour together shortly thereafter at New York's Fillmore East and to this day have held such high admiration for each other's work. After years of being out of touch, Elton listened to Leon's music while on safari in Africa last summer and was inspired to reconnect with his idol. "Elton called to ask if I would do a duet album with him," Russell said. "I'm very happy that he chose me to do this."


Hot and sexy Grammy-nominated recording artist and drumming legend Sheila E. featuring the E Family will headline the entertainment at CHCI's 33rd Annual Awards Gala, the hallmark event of Hispanic Heritage Month, on Wednesday, September 15, 2010, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. With the theme, "Celebrating History, Heritage, and the American Dream," CHCI will present Medallion of Excellence awards to actress Eva Longoria Parker and jazz legend Arturo Sandoval, and the CHCI Chair's Award to Broadway composer Lin-Manuel Miranda. CNN's Soledad O'Brien will serve as the celebrity host. Former Kumbia Kings member and Latin pop sensation Irving "Pee Wee" Salinas will open the evening's program with a new single before performing the national anthem.

Born into a musical family, Sheila E. has been performing for close to four decades and her 1984 single "The Glamorous Life" was nominated for an American Music Award and a Grammy Award. She is the President of Heaven Productions Music and the co-founder and co-chair of the Elevate Hope Foundation, a charitable organization that uses music therapy to work with abused and abandoned children. Her impressive career has exposed the talents of a truly multi-faceted performer- from drumming, percussion, vocals, song writing, arranging, producing, and composing, to her inspiring humanitarian efforts. Sheila E. was also a judge at the most recent Miss Universe Pageant broadcast live from Las Vegas on August 23, 2010.

Each year, the CHCI Annual Awards Gala is the hallmark event that launches Hispanic Heritage Month in Washington, D.C., and serves as the unifying event for the Hispanic-American community. CHCI would like to thank its Hispanic Heritage Month Conference & Gala Planning Committee members Reps. Ben Lujan, Ciro Rodriguez and Lucille Roybal-Allard. The 33rd Annual Awards Gala Premier sponsor is Comcast and Millennium sponsors include Anheuser-Busch Companies, Lilly USA, Lockheed Martin, and Univision. Proceeds of the Gala benefit CHCI's award-winning leadership development programs.

Sunday, August 15, 2010


The annual Labor Day Weekend Tanglewood Jazz Festival will take place September 4-5 at the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra in Lenox, Massachusetts. Jazz greats highlighting this year's festival include Kurt Elling, John Pizzarelli, Donal Fox, Maya Beiser, Jane Monheit, Eddie Daniels, Bob James, Peter Erskine, the Legendary Count Basie Orchestra, Julian Lage, Jessica Molaskey, Laurence Hobgood, and Jazz Café Video Contest winners Noah Baerman, Audrey Silver, Kelley Johnson and Brandon Wright. All shows will be held at Seiji Ozawa Hall and in the Jazz Café tent.

On Saturday, September 4, at 2 pm the 2010 Tanglewood Jazz Festival will open with "Radio Deluxe" co-hosted by John Pizzarelli and Jessica Molaskey. The program will be taped live at the festival for later broadcast on more than 60 stations nation wide. Normally broadcast from their living room "high atop Lexington Avenue," the Tanglewood program will be the second consecutive year they have taken it on the road since the program's inception in 2005. The show's format, marked by the duo's urbane, sophisticated humor, inventive playlist and extensive knowledge of the Great American Songbook, has an expanded repertoire to include such rock era voices as Randy Newman and Joni Mitchell. "Radio Deluxe" from Tanglewood will feature special guest vocalist, Jane Monheit. Monheit skyrocketed to the top of the list of female jazz vocalists ten years ago with her first recording, Never Never Land, and has subsequently released recordings that often debut as number one on the Billboard charts. Her upcoming release, Home (September, 2010, Emarcy/Universal Records), features guest artists Pizzarelli, violinist, Mark O'Connor, pianist, Larry Goldings, guitarist, Frank Vignola and vocalist, Peter Eldridge. Ms. Monheit last performed at the Tanglewood Jazz Festival in 2008 with Mark O'Connor's "Hot Swing" with Vignola and guitarist, Julian Lage.

On Saturday, September 4, at 8 pm, pianist, composer and arranger Laurence Hobgood and his trio will bring Hobgood's exquisite original compositions and arrangements of jazz standards to the stage of Ozawa Hall. Referred to as "one of the most incredible pianists I've ever heard" by Dave Brubeck, Hobgood has collaborated with vocalist Kurt Elling since 1993 when they co-produced Close Your Eyes, their first of six Grammy nominated records on the Blue Note label. Hobgood received his own Grammy statue in 2010 for "Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying a Vocalist" for Dedicated to You: Kurt Elling Sings the Music of Coltrane and Hartman (Concord Records 2009). A powerful, imaginative innovator from the Chicago school of hard-driving swing, Hobgood's latest CD, When the Heart Dances, (Naim Records), features legendary bassist, Charlie Haden.

Following the Laurence Hobgood Trio, Grammy winning vocalist, Kurt Elling will make a triumphant return to the Tanglewood Jazz Festival. Recipient of the 2010 Grammy for Best Vocal Jazz Album of the Year (Dedicated to You: Kurt Elling Sings the Music of Coltrane and Hartman), Elling is known for his cutting edge vocalese technique and four-octave baritone voice. A native of Chicago, Elling has worked extensively with the Steppenwolf Theater on multi-disciplinary events incorporating music, poetry, acting, dancing and visual art. He has recorded and toured extensively and was awarded the Prix Billie Holiday from the Academi du Jazz in Paris, placed six consecutive years at the top of the Downbeat Critics and Jazz Times Reader's polls and has received five Jazz Journalists' Association Awards for Best Male Vocalist.

The Sunday afternoon concert on September 5 will open at 2 pm with a rare performance by clarinetist/saxophonist Eddie Daniels, pianist, Bob James, drummer Peter Erskine and bassist James Genus in a new program called "Broadway Boogie." Musical collaborators for forty years, Daniels and James refer to this swinging, integrated quartet as "chamber jazz. "Chamber jazz," says Daniels, denotes music in a close setting that is finely tuned and woven together, even in its improvisation and composition, that pulls the listener into the utter intimacy of the setting. I believe this approach can transform the performer as well as the listener." Repertoire ranges from jazz standards to Bach. Bob James, best known for his smooth and fusion-flavored music and collaborations with guitarist Earl Klugh, David Sanborn and Fourplay, has a wide range of musical talent from classical music to straight-ahead jazz. Pianist for Sarah Vaughn in the 1960's, James' discography includes work with guitarist Lee Ritenour, bassist Dave Holland and pianist Joe Sample as well as an eastern influenced CD entitled, Angels of Shanghai, that features students from the Shanghai Conservatory of music. James says, "Perhaps more than any other art form, jazz happens in the moment. You can talk about it, you can rehearse, you can theorize, but what I crave most is the unique feeling I get when I'm about to embark into unknown territory, especially when my captain for the journey is someone I trust and respect. Individually and together Eddie and I want to inspire and challenge our listeners. We've spent our lives with a deep passion for jazz and the dialogue we plan to engage in during this long overdue reunion will give our audience the opportunity to hear the influences that have shaped our styles.

Following "Broadway Boogie" on Sunday afternoon will be the Legendary Count Basie Orchestra. Since its creation in 1935 by William "Count" Basie, the orchestra has toured and performed around the globe for fans and dignitaries in every country. Since Basie's passing in 1984, the orchestra has been led by Thad Jones, Frank Foster, Grover Mitchell and--currently--by Bill Hughes (who was hired by Basie in 1953). The multi-Grammy winning orchestra continues to tour the world and perform for enthusiastic fans of every age.

Sunday evening's performances on Sept 5 at 8 pm will begin with the Julian Lage Group. While Lage has performed several times at the Tanglewood Jazz Festival (most recently with Mark O'Connor's "Hot Swing" in 2008) this marks the first appearance on the Ozawa Hall stage with his own group. Regarded a guitar prodigy at the age of 8, Lage spent several years under the tutelage of instrumentalist Gary Burton and subsequently gained recognition from jazz superstars Herbie Hancock and Bela Fleck. His premier recording Sounding Point (Emarcy Records 2009) was nominated for Best Contemporary Jazz Album. The Julian Lage Group has received critical acclaim for their unique compositions and improvisational style blending the influences of classical, blues, jazz and folk music. The 21-year old Boston based guitarist recently performed with Mark O'Connor's "Hot Swing" and with the Julian Lage Group at the Newport Jazz Festival in August.

The festival will close on Sunday evening with an encore performance by pianist and composer Donal Fox, performing a new program titled the "Piazzolla to Bach Project," with special guest, classical cellist Maya Beiser. Fox appeared at the Tanglewood Jazz Festival in 2008 with his Scarlatti Jazz Suite Project and returns by popular demand. Named a Martin Luther King Visiting Artist at MIT in 2009, Fox crosses the classical music and jazz music boundaries and continuously received critical acclaim for his compositions and integration of the two musical genres. Following Fox's world premiere in December of his piano concerto "Peace Out" for Improvised Piano and Orchestra to a standing ovation at Carnegie Hall, Anthony Tommasini of the New York Times wrote, "Mr. Fox's piano playing, bursting with violent, keyboard-spanning runs, drove the music. A searching middle section quotes fragments of a Charlie Parker blues tune, "Now's the Time." After a steely solo piano cadenza, the piece concludes with a pensive finale based on a descending and strangely haunting four-note refrain…an arresting piece…compelling music…exceptionally interesting."

Called a "cello goddess" by The New Yorker, Maya Baiser has captivated audiences worldwide with her virtuosity, electric repertoire and quest to redefine her instrument's boundaries. She has collaborated with Philip Glass, Mark O'Connor, Brian Eno, Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails and Tan Dun Crouching Tiger Concerto) among many others. Her major teachers were Aldo Parisot, Uzi Weizel, Alexander Schneider, and Isaac Stern. Beiser was the founding cellist of the legendary new music ensemble, the Bang on a Can All- Stars. This will be her first appearance at the Tanglewood Jazz Festival. Beiser's latest CD, Provenance, peaked at #6 in overall music sales and #1 in classical music on Amazon. It also hit #1 in world music on iTunes and #3 in classical music on Billboard.

Also appearing with Donal Fox and Maya Beiser will be Cuban born drummer Dafnis Prieto whose arrival in the US has been compared to that of an asteroid hitting New York. "Bedazzlement is a proven strategy for Mr. Prieto," the New York Times said, and Latin jazz musician Eddie Palmieri calls him "extraordinary." Vibraphonist Warren Wolf and bassist John Lockwood round out the quartet.

Saturday, August 14, 2010


The Soulful Radio Network has announced a series of 8 new channels added to the existing 16 channel internet radio network, which now boasts a total of 24 channels of amongst the best music selections across the globe. The Soulful Radio Network has also just announced the official internet radio launch of the Alfonzo Blackwell Channel. Among the new channels are the Old Skool Hip Hop Channel, the Classic Rock Channel and the Classic Country Channel. In 2005 Mr. Blackwell was appointed the Music Director of the premier Soulful Smooth Jazz Channel. Under his leadership and expertise, the station began a steady rise in mass popularity. Broadcasting for over 6 years now, the Soulful Smooth Jazz Channel is one of the leading internet radio stations for the best mixture of Smooth Jazz, Contemporary Jazz, R&B and Soul music. Blackwell has been writing, producing, recording and playing the saxophone amongst other instruments for well over 15 years. Throughout his career, he has performed with luminous and legendary recording artists such as Roy Ayers, Gladys Knight, The Whispers, Mary J. Blige and Brian McKnight to name a few. Like in the vein of the late great Miles Davis, his music transcends all cultural and musical boundaries. Alfonzo’s music has been described as “Rhythm & Cool”. The newly launched Alfonzo Blackwell Channel presented by The Soulful Radio Network will broadcast Blackwell’s full music catalog, hundreds of previously unreleased tracks, remixes, concert excerpts and so much more exclusively on the channel. The Alfonzo Blackwell Channel is the latest addition to the soulful internet radio network that currently broadcasts a total of 24 stations that covers a vast range of music genres and also features a station dedicated to the music of Michael Jackson. With unique, soulful and quality programming, SoulfulRadioNetwork.com is among the top internet radio stations in the world.


Friday, August 13, 2010


KaZaA is quickly returning to the forefront of the digital music experience with the beta release of its cloud based music streaming application allowing consumers unlimited access to over 1.6 million tracks and 1 million song lyrics.KaZaA’s new application puts consumers in charge of the music they want, when they want it and then allows them to immerse their whole experience within an on-line community through the integration of the latest social media capabilities.Emanuel Krassenstein, KaZaA’s CTO said, “While there is no shortage of smart devices in the market until KaZaA’s launch no-one was offering music consumers the opportunity to fully integrate their music into their lives and social networks.” The KaZaA music service is accessible via a web browser, the consumers play lists, favourite artists, songs, genre’s and profiles are harmoniously synced and stored securely in the clouds allowing subscribers to access their music downloads how they want it and when they want it. KaZaA supercharges the music experience for consumers, by streaming at the optimal speed for listening quality with the KaZaA Music Player. The ability to share play lists with friends or the on-line community has been enhanced allowing customers to become on-line DJ’s. Music discovery is also enabled by a Real Time “Explore” feature, that instantaneously tracks and displays what music is being played, added to playlists or added to favourite lists throughout the KaZaA site. In keeping with the mission to return control of the music to fans and artists, KaZaA’s API facilitates access to music interaction data allowing developers to create exciting new music interfaces. “The interactive experience is focussed on giving consumers music on their terms which will result in more content being delivered and more revenue being generated for artists,” said Emanuel Krassenstein.

Thursday, August 12, 2010


Art Of Noise - Influence
Blundetto - Bad Bad Things
Budos Band - Budos Band III
Bruce Sudano - Life And The Romantic
Cachao Sounds - La Descarga Continua
Cherry Boppers - Remix It Again
Doug Hammond - New Beginning
George Duke - Deja Vu
Jason Roebke - In The Interval
Jimmy Smith - Respect/Livin' It Up
Kenya - Starting Over
Manu Katche - Third Round
Nick Rosen - Into The Sky
Nico Fidenco - Black Emmanuelle Original Soundtrack
Nico Fidenco - La Via Della Prostituzione Original Soundtrack
One For All - Incorrigible
Roy Ayers - Lots Of Love
Roy Bud - Get Carter Original Soundtrack
Saravah Soul - Cultura Impura
Seu Jorge & Almaz - Seu Jorge & Almaz
Shawn Lee - Sing A Song
Tamba Trio - Brasil Saluda A Mexico
Various Artists - Afrobeat Airways
Various Artists - Brownswood Electric - Presented By Gilles Peterson
Various Artists - Tropicalia - A Brazilian Revolution In Sound
Willie Jones III - Next Phase


The 7th Pembrokeshire Jazz and Blues Festival, set in the heart of Britain’s only coastal National Park, takes place from Thursday, August 26th to Monday, August 30th (during the UK bank holiday weekend). This years’ Pembrokeshire Jazz and Blues Festival features 27 artists performing in 18 venues, and the festival takes place around Fishguard in South-West Wales. Among the highlights are Arun Ghosh’s Indo-Jazz quartet, which takes South Asian themes and injects them with elements of funk, jazz and urban beats; Organic’s soulful, swinging Hammond B3 trio chock full of groovy standards; and vocalist Molly Brown’s feel good mix of blues, jazz and swing. Sax master and founding member of Hawkwind, Nik Turner will be playing storming funk and Latin; and the Chocolatejazzsalsa Band bring their tasty Cuban sounds; while 5 Go Swing specialize in hot club-style Gypsy jazz. Also appearing are Youtuba, a knockout tuba quartet who have performed all over Europe and are guaranteed to leave any audience with a smile on their face. Also look out for superb slide guitarist and singer Will Killeen who has been described as ‘Ireland’s finest blues export since Rory Gallagher‘. Elsewhere, the Albino Frogs present their Steely Dan and Blockheads-inspired funk, fusion and jazz featuring superb original songs and legendary Pembrokeshire R’n'B act Cottonmouth thrill with their hard-driving grooves. There are also fantastic workshops throughout the festival, from how to play and dance salsa with Chocolatejazzsalsa to a brass workshop with the unique Youtuba. Says actor and comedian Griff Rhys Jones of the festival, “Impossible though it is to get the blues in Pembrokeshire in my experience, I am happy to support the coolest thing in West Wales since frozen crabmeat was invented – let the good times roll!” For more information on this fine festival, full listings and details about buying tickets, check out the Aberjazz website.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


One of the most sweetly sexy soundtracks of the 70's Italian scene - Black Emanuelle – an out and out classic from the legendary Nico Fidenco! The style here is quite striking – almost earthy at times, but warmly erotic at others – kind of a blend of rootsy percussion with some of the more electric touches you'd hear on other Italian scores – but all wrapped up with a really unique feel! The more electric cuts feature lots of isolated instruments, slowly gyrating basslines, choppy guitar, and cool electronic bits on keyboards – and the set list is quite different than the American issue of the soundtrack in the 70s on West End Records. Titles include "Of Your Body", "Emmanuelle's Theme", "Unavoidable", "Sudden Ride", "Wild Cry", "Rhythum Again", "Skin In The Wind", "Flute & Skin", "Black Rhythum", and "Thoughtless". 34 tracks in all – and a sweet fold-out set of notes! (Limited edition of 1000 copies.)

A late entry in the Black Emanuelle series starring Laura Gemser and featuring music by Nico Fidenco – La Via Della Prostituzione – featuring a mix of sulty Fidenco sounds and more funky and disco oriented grooves! Much of the material here has never been released before this great CD from Beat Records – and it's full of funky 70s dancefloor styled sounds with spacier touches, clapping rhythms and evocative wordless vocals. Great stuff – benchmark late 70s erotic soundtrack grooves after the international dancefloor sounds seeped into the style! Titles include "Run Cheetah Run", "A Modern Reportage", "Performing Joy", "Red Room", "Lady Surprise", "Reporter In Action", "Strange Hospital", "Lady Fighting", "Too Much Again" and more.
Source: © 1996-2010, Dusty Groove America, Inc.


Featured soloist and Grammy-nominated trumpeter Gary Grant, who has recorded with such notable artists as David Foster, Barbara Streisand, Michael Jackson, Celine Dion and Toni Braxton, released his latest album, Don’t Hold Your Breath, on July 20th. The album is being distributed by BFM Digital, a leading digital music aggregator and distributor of independent music. Grant’s rich and clear sound can be heard all over the world with an impressive accumulation of 2 billion recordings sold. Gary has been 1st trumpet for Quincy Jones for the past 25 years, and with over three decades in the business, Gary has accumulated an extraordinary list of recordings that include many top hits. Grant’s sound has been heard as the accompaniment to diverse projects including the Academy Awards, Emmy Awards, 20 seasons of the hit TV show The Simpsons, and 14 recordings with Earth Wind and Fire. The trumpeter’s second album, Don’t Hold Your Breath, accentuates the important healing power of breath with acoustical instruments that engulf the listener with the feeling of enjoyable innovative music. The exciting tunes, whether up-tempo or sensual ballads, features Gary throughout the album of original jazz and jazz Latin compositions and includes guest artists Dan Higgins, Vinnie Colaiuta, Wally Minko, Wayne Bergeron, Brian Bromberg, and Johnny Friday.

Grant says, "Don’t Hold Your Breath is an expression of my deep connection and feeling for jazz music. Throughout my career and this recording process, I’ve strived to be true to myself and to the art form I represent. My role is not only a player but also a producer, composer and arranger. My sincere hope and desire is that you enjoy this music and it brings you happiness.” The album takes the jazz lover on a different journey that is refreshing and interesting, a journey that weaves a brilliant harmonic concept into an infectious rhythm section. Grant’s sound and improvising is sensitive as it is powerful. The essence of the quality of sound and execution of his performance is a musical joy for the listener. Don’t Hold Your Breath was released to all digital services on July 20th, 2010 through Gary Grant Music.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


An amazing introduction to one of the most significant cultural movements in the latter half of the 20th Century – the ground-breaking years of Tropicalia in late 60s Brazil! The music and legacy of Tropicalia are referenced often, but hardly ever presented this well – and this package is everything we could have hoped for as an introduction to the movement – filled not just with great music, but also an overwhelming amount of notes that trace the history of Brazilian music and art through their changes in relation to Tropicalia! In fact, the notes are almost worth the price of the compilation alone – very densely written over 48 pages in the CD booklet, with more information in one place than we've ever seen before. But as you might imagine, it's the music that really makes the set special – and Soul Jazz have done an excellent job of pulling together key late 60s works from the most important musicians associated with Tropicalia – an great starting point for the movement that's filled with most essential tracks! Titles include "Bat Macumba" by Gilberto Gil, "Tuareg" and "Sebastiana" by Gal Costa, "A Minha Menina" and "Panis Et Circenses" by Os Mutantes, "Alfo Mega" and "Tropicalia" by Caetano Veloso, "Gloria" and "Jimmy Renda-Se" by Tom Ze, "Procissao" by Gilberto Gil, "Ave Genghis Khan" by Os Mutantes, "Take It Easy My Brother Charles" by Jorge Ben, "Quero Sambal Meu Bem" by Tom Ze, "Lost In The Paradise" by Caetano Veloso, "Bat Macumba" by Os Mutantes, "Domingo No Parque" by Gilberto Gil & Os Mutantes, and "Irene" by Caetano Veloso.

Source: © 1996-2010, Dusty Groove America, Inc.


A pair of near perfect soulful jazz organ sets from Jimmy Smith – 1967's Respect and 1968's Livin' It Up – plus the rare non album single "Mickey Mouse" as bonus track for the first time on CD! Respect is really nice jazz album from Jimmy, although one that got hidden in the years of Jimmy's more "concept" oriented sessions for Verve. Most of the material is quartet stuff, with players like Bernard Purdie, Eric Gale, and Ron Carter backing up Jimmy's soulful organ. The tracks are longer than usual too, with lots of nice soloing going on, and a stone easy soul groove. Includes a tasty loping version of "Get Out Of My Life", with a very different drum groove than usual, plus "Funky Broadway", "T Bone Steak", and "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy". Livin' It Up is a straight up stunner – and quite possibly one of his greatest records for Verve! The set has Jimmy working with arranger Oliver Nelson – in a setting that's got big band backings, but done in a style that's cool enough to cut through all the BS of similar sessions. There's no hoke at all – just a lean and soulful approach that has Nelson serving up a powerhouse jazzy groove underneath – and Jimmy soloing madly over the top! The album's filled with great tunes too – including a fab cover of "Mission Impossible", the original "Big Boss Man", a version of Richard Evans' "Burning Spear", a great takes on "Valley Of The Dolls" and "The Gentle Rain". Great stuff throughout! (Limited edition.).

Source: © 1996-2010, Dusty Groove America, Inc.


George Duke is back with Déjà Vu, a new album of jazzy soul fusion. On this new release, George plays lively set that shares a tendency with his great 70s albums in that it feels fresh and live in its craft in a really transcendent way. Duke plays pianos, a range of synths, Rhodes, Moog, electric Wurlitzer and more plus sings on a number of tunes and players include Larry Kimpal on bass, Ray Fuller and Jef Lee Johnson on guitar, Teddy Campbell & Ronald Bruner Jr on drums, Hubert Laws on flute, Sarah Thornblade on violin and others. Déjà Vu is a look back at some styles that Duke was interested in during the early parts of his career. In some ways it’s similar to his previous album Dukey Treats but it is a different look back. For one thing he chose to do a lot more synthesizer playing on this album using vintage analog synths along with current technology digital synths.
Here’s a song by song breakdown from Deja Vu:

1. A Melody: on this track Duke revisits the “Brazilian Love Affair” vibe in a slightly different way. Here he had the opportunity to play an extended Voyager (mini moog) solo which he had not done in a long time. This is a great this vibe and the vocals are definitely A Melody.

2. You Touch My Brain: actually written for the Dukey Treats album but never recorded. This is a real loose “Sly” kind of funk groove which gave Duke a chance to sing a simple song and though most fans are not used to hearing Ron Bruner Jr. play this way, he puts that simple spice on the drum track allowing the music to flow naturally – after all.

3. What Goes Around Comes Around: originally written by Everette Harp and George Duke for the latest Everette Harp album that Duke produced. With an over abundance of songs it was never recorded for his album. The song has been altered a bit and decided to include it in Deja Vu. The melody is played by Everette Harp on soprano sax and George Duke on Voyager, a real nice blending of timbres. This tune may remind some of a funky type of Weather Report vibe. Michael Manson plays great bass on this track along with some tasty guitar work from Ray Fuller. Duke also played synth bass along with computer drums, the latter being programmed to sound like a real drummer.

4. Bring Me Joy: will remind some of a Stevie Wonder song. Duke here plays lead Voyager and sings some easy vocals but overall allow the synths to dominate the feeling. Most of the synths are Arp Oddesey and Mini Moog – all played one note at a time to achieve a chord. The vibe solo is a played via Giga Studio, Cool Vibe patch.

5. Ripple In Time: a tribute to Miles Davis from his funky free “Tutu” period. This tune allowed Duke to create what has been called tone poems using various synths to create the environment. It features Oscar Brashear’s interpretation of Miles, and he did a great job. Ron Bruner is solid throughout as is Jeff Lee on guitar. Here Duke plays the Marcus Miller sounding bass on this one.

6. Oh Really?: Kinda funky in an off beat way. Ron Bruner Jr. lays the beat back and George and company all ride the wave. Once again Jeff Lee is amazing! Larry Kimpel laid the law down on this one as well. Duke’s old Wurlitzer 140B sounds like it’s stuffed with socks – and that Castlebar Clavinet – oh boi!!!

7. 6 O’Clock Revisited: exactly what it says. Originally recorded for Duke’s Warner Brothers album Snapshot. This time around he wrote lyrics and changed up the groove. It’s mostly an all synth track except for Ray Fuller on guitar and Duke on piano.

8. Come To Me Now: a song Duke wrote some years ago and never recorded. It’s got a great melody and allows Duke the chance to play some sensitive lead piano.

9. Stupid Is As Stupid Does: a track in the typical jazz tradition of solos by all (except the bass). Duke used to record these type tracks almost on an everyday basis back in the day – this is truly a Déjà Vu moment. Bob Sheppard, Nicholas Payton and Hubert Laws throw down along with a blazing Nord Lead 3 solo by Duke followed by a crazy Ron Bruner solo.

10. Déjà Vu: a track where the melody begins very simply and grows and grows. The tune allows Duke to stretch on a Motif ES8 synth guitar patch and gives Bruner a chance to shine especially at the end of the tune. Mention must also be given to Sarah Thornblade who has quickly become one of Duke’s favorite violinists. This tune will remind some of the Mahavishnu Orchestra experience and that is appropriate.


The consummate artistry of Miles Davis and the scope of his musical vision at Columbia Records is paid the ultimate tribute on The Genius of Miles Davis. For the first time, this new collection brings together the eight deluxe multi-CD box sets that were known as The Miles Davis Series. Each volume – seven of which have collectible "metal spines" – explored a major phase of the artist's development from 1955 (Miles Davis & John Coltrane: The Complete Columbia Recordings 1955-1961) through 1975 (The Complete On The Corner Sessions). Each volume presented the music from various LPs, plus a wealth of previously unissued session material. The eight box sets, totaling 43 CDs of music, were originally released on Columbia/Legacy between 1996 and 2007, and won a total of eight Grammy Awards. Several of the original box sets have sold out over the years, and have now been re-manufactured especially for this strictly limited-edition run of 2,000 copies of The Genius of Miles Davis. Presented in a replica of Miles' own trumpet case (21½" x 11" x 8"), a collectible objet d'art in and of itself, each package will include a number of extras: an exact replica of Miles' custom-made 'Gustat' Heim model 2 trumpet mouthpiece, a previously unseen and unavailable fine art lithograph by Miles, and a boutique quality t-shirt designed and manufactured exclusively by Trunk Ltd. for this package. Weighing in at 21 pounds and individually numbered, The Genius of Miles Davis is destined to be a treasure in the hands of true Miles Davis aficionados. A D2C (Direct to Consumer) exclusive via GeniusOfMilesDavis.com, it is now available for pre-order at $1199.00 in advance of its September 14th release through Columbia/Legacy, a division of SONY MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT.

The Genius of Miles Davis includes the eight studio session box sets that encompass the bulk of his original studio albums from the '50s to the '70s. It does not include the various Columbia/Legacy live performance multi-CD box sets, for example The Complete Live at the Plugged Nickel 1965, released in 1995; or The Cellar Door Sessions 1970, released in 2005. The signing of Miles Davis to Columbia Records made musical history in 1955. He continued to make musical history for decades to come, changing the course of jazz (and in the process, popular and avant garde music) "four or five times," as he himself once quipped. There were important albums under his name in the late-1940s and '50s before his arrival at Columbia, and there were also notable albums after his years at Columbia, from 1986 until his death in 1991. But Columbia Records became the repository of the overwhelming majority of the signature albums recorded by Miles in his lifetime, many of them with long-time producer and collaborator Teo Macero. These individual albums were gathered together in their entirety for the first time last year as The Complete Miles Davis Columbia Album Collection. A functional chest with removable lid housed the 52 single and double album titles (70 CDs of music in total), each packaged in a mini-LP CD cardboard replica of the original jacket, with original artwork and spine.

The Genius of Miles Davis is also the result of a unique collaborative partnership effort between the Miles Davis Estate and Sony Music, which includes the redesign of the MilesDavis.com website. It is now the first unified and regularly updated site highlighting all aspects of his life. The dynamic web environment is not specific to Columbia/Legacy and Sony Music, in that it will cover product releases by other companies as well. The website, featuring news and vital information, video content, merchandise, and exclusive photography, will also offer special daily and weekly deals. The Genius of Miles Davis draws together more than a decade of studio archival research by jazz scholars, annotators, and reissue producers. Each of the box sets in The Miles Davis Series was anxiously greeted with raves by the critical establishment upon their release, and more than half of the box sets received at least one Grammy Award, some winning multiple Grammys. They are summarized as follows (in chronological order of the original music, not the Columbia/Legacy release dates): Miles Davis & John Coltrane: The Complete Columbia Recordings 1955-1961: This 6-CD box set (released in 2000) won two Grammy Awards, Best Boxed Recording Package and Best Album Notes. Focus is on the evolution of Miles' so-called "first great quintet," comprising John Coltrane (tenor saxophone), Red Garland (piano), Paul Chambers (bass), and Philly Joe Jones (drums), with important contributions by Cannonball Adderley (alto saxophone), Bill Evans (piano), Wynton Kelly (piano), and Jimmy Cobb (drums) – these sessions encompass the music for the LPs 'Round About Midnight, Milestones, Jazz Track, Kind Of Blue, Someday My Prince Will Come, Miles & Monk At Newport, Jazz At the Plaza, and much more.

Miles Davis & Gil Evans: The Complete Columbia Studio Recordings: The inaugural entry in The Miles Davis Series, this 6-CD box set (released in 1996) won three Grammy Awards, Best Historical Album, Best Album Notes, and Best Recording Package (Boxed), only the second time in Grammy history that was ever achieved. The partnership with Gil Evans spanned 1957 to 1968, and encompassed the music for the LPs Miles Ahead, Porgy And Bess, Sketches Of Spain, and Quiet Nights, but there is much more to be heard here.

Seven Steps: The Complete Columbia Recordings Of Miles Davis (1963-1964): This 7-CD box set (released in 2004) explores Miles' slow and careful development of his so-called "second great quintet," whose rhythm section comprised Herbie Hancock (piano), Ron Carter (bass), and Tony Williams (drums). Saxophonist George Coleman is heard on most of the music for the LPs Seven Steps To Heaven, Quiet Nights, Miles Davis In Europe, My Funny Valentine, and Four & More; and Sam Rivers joined for Miles In Tokyo. But it is not until the final CD's Miles In Berlin that Wayne Shorter enters the picture and the classic quintet's lineup was finalized.

Miles Davis Quintet 1965-'68: The Complete Columbia Studio Recordings: Actually the second entry in The Miles Davis Series, this 6-CD box set (released in 1998) won the Grammy Award for Best Album Notes. The "second great quintet" of Shorter, Hancock, Carter, and Williams remains an all-time jazz standard, as heard on the music for the LPs E.S.P., Miles Smiles, Sorcerer, Nefertiti, and Miles in the Sky, plus about half of Filles De Kilimanjaro and Water Babies.

The Complete In A Silent Way Sessions: This 3-CD box set (released in 2001) covers less than six months from September 1968 to February 1969. But it is one of the most critical periods in Miles' career, as he transitions away from the "second great quintet" of Shorter, Hancock, Carter, and Williams. They are all here, to be sure, on the rest of the music from Filles De Kilimanjaro and Water Babies recorded in September and November. But by the time the In A Silent Way LP came into being, the picture had changed to include Chick Corea (electric piano), Joe Zawinul (organ and electric piano), Dave Holland (bass), and most significantly, John McLaughlin (electric guitar).

The Complete Bitches Brew Sessions: The third entry in The Miles Davis Series, this 4-CD box set (released in 1998) won the Grammy Award for Best Boxed Recording Package, as it reprised the memorable cover art of the late Mati Klarwein. Again covering less than six months time – from August 1969 (the week after Woodstock) through February 1970 – this is when the influence of Jimi Hendrix, Sly Stone, James Brown, Santana, and Marvin Gaye, as well as the Beatles' post-production editing pyrotechnics all came together for Miles. To his new quintet lineup of Shorter, Corea, Holland and Jack DeJohnette (drums), Miles often augmented the sessions with a dozen other players, among them: McLaughlin, Zawinul, Bennie Maupin (bass clarinet), Harvey Brooks (electric bass), Lenny White (drums), Don Alias (congas), and so on. The result was one of the greatest albums of Miles' career, and one of the most influential records in post-modern jazz and rock.

The Complete Jack Johnson Sessions: This 5-CD box set (released in 2003) won the Grammy Award for Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package. The Bitches Brew dates ended on February 6, 1970; these dates continue 12 days later and span less than four months through June. The difference is the greater role of McLaughlin (joined by 'free jazz' guitarist Sonny Sharrock), and the fiercer edginess of the music. The back-story was the contention for Muhammad Ali's heavyweight boxing title, and actor James Earl Jones' portrayal of turn-of-the-century black boxing champ Jack Jefferson in The Great White Hope (on Broadway and on film). All this was on Miles' mind in 1970, a year before Shaft ushered in a new breed of African-American hero.

The Complete On The Corner Sessions: This 6-CD box set (released in 2007) is the final entry in The Miles Davis Series and is also the latest chronologically. It jumps ahead two years to 1972, by which time the quintet lineups were a thing of the past, and Miles had transitioned into the funk-rock-influenced large-group that would define his style for the next two decades. The sessions are chronicled through mid-1975, and encompass the music of the LPs On The Corner (1972), Big Fun (1974), and Get Up With It (1974), although more than half the music on the box set was previously unissued at the time of its release three years ago.

Printed on the t-shirt included inside THE GENIUS OF MILES DAVIS is this quotation: "I can't play like anyone else, I can't fight like anyone else, I can't do ANYTHING like anyone else. I'm just myself." – MILES DAVIS. Over the course of these eight box sets and 43 remarkable CDs, his music is, indeed, like nothing else – but its haunting, turbulent, fearless, visionary, multi-faceted self.

Monday, August 09, 2010


The Richmond (VA) Jazz Festival this year will be held August 14-15 at the 100-acre Maymont park and museum in Richmond, Virginia. The two-day, multi-stage event will feature more than 20 artists representing mostly jazz, as well as other diverse music genres. A portion of the proceeds from this event will benefit the Maymont Foundation, the Richmond Jazz Society and Educational Learning Opportunities. Artists scheduled to perform include Chaka Khan, Boney James, Poncho Sanchez, Norman Brown, Stanley Clarke, Ledisi, Chuck Mangione, Rick Braun and Richard Elliott, Big Sam's Funky Nation, Alex Bugnon, and many more. Local performers include Sharon Rae North and Plunky and Oneness. The festival offers an experience unlike any other in the Richmond region, according to Jennifer Hunter, Altria Client Services' Vice President of Corporate Affairs. Along with high-caliber music, concert-goers will enjoy wine tastings from Altria Group's Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, watch chef demonstrations, take self-guided tours of the Maymont grounds and meet the Festival's musicians, she said. "Altria Group has been a strong supporter of the arts for more than 50 years," Hunter said. "We believe that cultural events such as the Richmond Jazz Festival at Maymont help make our headquarters community vibrant and engaging for our employees, their families and neighbors. We are pleased to be a part of this exciting, new event for the region." In addition to being presented by Altria Group, the Richmond Jazz Festival at Maymont has Verizon and Dominion as stage sponsors, and also Richmond BMW, the Virginia Lottery, NBC12, the Richmond Times Dispatch and WCVE Public Radio as sponsors.

Sunday, August 08, 2010


429 Records released Tribal, the extraordinary new album by Dr. John and the follow up to his Grammy winning 429 Records album, The City That Care Forgot (2008). AKA the Night Tripper, the iconic American musician has returned with another spectacular slice of mercurial sounds. Steeped in his trademark melange of rock, funk, jazz, voodoo-inflected r&b and Creole flavor, Tribal is a statement that builds upon his already formidable musical legacy. Dr. John (aka Mac Rebennac) is joined by his band, the Lower 911 and they perform alongside several guest artists including 2009 Grammy winner Derek Trucks, New Orleans legend Allen Touissant, Donald Harrison and the late Bobby Charles, for whom the album is dedicated. Tribal is available August 3rd on 429 Records. Dr. John and the Lower 911 are currently on an extensive North American tour. Dr. John has long been considered the physical embodiment of the vibrant culture of New Orleans. Throughout his illustrious musical career--from his roots as a New Orleans-based session musician back in the 1950's playing with legends like Professor Longhair, Art Neville and Joe Tex, to forging his distinctive voodoo-inflected rhythm and blues psychedelia throughout the 60's and 70's, to his tireless efforts recording, performing and being a spokesman for the city today, (he had a recurring role in the critically acclaimed HBO series "Treme") his colorful persona and talents transcend musical genres and art forms garnering respect from fans, cultural peers, civic leaders and beyond. 429 Records is a unit of the Savoy Label Group (SLG). SLG is the North American unit of CME (Columbia Music Entertainment), the oldest music company in Japan.

Saturday, August 07, 2010


Three-time Grammy Award winner, Brian Setzer, showcases his legendary guitar-playing on the new double-live album Don't Mess With a Big Band out July 20th on Surfdog Records. Setzer and his label will be releasing more live material in the coming months in an effort to replace the horrible-sounding bootlegs which have been flooding the market, and instead offer high-quality recordings. The 2-disc set, packed with 19 tracks, is a sizzling souvenir of The Brian Setzer Orchestra's 2009 tour of Japan. Don't Mess With a Big Band contains all of his biggest hits (including "Rock This Town," "Stray Cat Strut," and "Jump Jive An' Wail") and includes a couple of rare gems that he had never previously performed live. Brian Setzer leads his 18-piece powerhouse band through ninety minutes of amazing music. From launching the rockabilly revolution with the Stray Cats in the '80s to pioneering the swing revival with the Brian Setzer Orchestra during the late '90s, this Long Island-born innovator has earned his unique place in modern music by walking the line between conceptual discipline and balls-out rockin'. Setzer has sold millions of albums worldwide and won his Grammy Awards (two for Best Pop Instrumental Performance for "Sleepwalk" from The Dirty Boogie in 1998 and "Caravan" from Vavoom in 2000, plus one for Best Pop Performance with "Jump, Jive an' Wail," also from The Dirty Boogie) by targeting that place where wild energy and visionary imagination intersect. The Brian Setzer Orchestra is currently on tour.

Friday, August 06, 2010


Internationally acclaimed vocalist and songwriter Seal will release his sixth studio album, Seal 6: Commitment, in the U.S. on September 28th on Reprise Records. The first single is "Secret," a deeply moving, string-laden ballad, that ranks among Seal's finest love songs. Seal 6: Commitment finds the London-born, three-time Grammy Award winner re-teaming with renowned music maestro David Foster, who also produced 2008's Soul, Seal's stunning covers collection of soul classics. "I asked David to produce Commitment because quite simply, he's the most incredible person I've worked with in the studio for a very long time," Seal says. "He's one of a kind. I don't think there's an arranger and producer anywhere on the planet who can do what he does." Foster is equally complimentary of Seal. "His voice is so unique and he has such command of it -- his tone and musicality are unequaled," Foster says, adding that Seal was on a mission while in the studio making Commitment. "He was in fearless, relentless pursuit of greatness -- no one was going to obscure his path. The album is full of beautiful musical surprises and his songwriting has never been better. He says it may be his best work yet and I think he may be right." "When all things in your life begin to align in the way they have for me over the past few years, you become incredibly focused," Seal explains. "I love a challenge, and this for me, has been the greatest challenge of my career: to write an album that exceeds my own expectations." While showcasing Seal's one-of-a-kind husky baritone, ear for unforgettable melodies, and unique lyrical point of view, songs such as "Secret," "The Weight of My Mistakes," "Best of Me," and "If I'm Any Closer," delve into the emotions surrounding love, family, and commitment, hence the title. "Everything about my life is fully committed," he says. "I've never felt more focused on the matter at hand: My wife, my children, the family in general, my own well-being, and of course music and my career. Each one of these songs has personal meaning for me. I dug very deep and all I can hope for is that the music strikes a chord with people." Over the course of a remarkable career that spans more than two decades, Seal has sold more than 15 million albums worldwide and enjoyed success across numerous genres of music. His emotional, romantic love songs such as "Prayer For the Dying," the Grammy Award-winning "Kiss From A Rose," and "Don't Cry," (all from 1994's Seal II), and "Love's Divine" (from 2003's "Seal IV"), delighted fans and earned him critical acclaim. He has also seen great success in the dance/pop music world beginning with his roots in Britain's house music/rave scene with his debut 1991 album and returning to those roots with 2007's dancefloor-friendly "System." In 2008, Seal released Soul -- a stunning compilation of classic soul songs delivered with Seal's unique, signature touch. A No. 1 album in France, Soul remained atop the album chart for 13 consecutive weeks.


Nearly fifty years after American legends took the stage at Tokyo's famed New Latin Quarter, original live recordings of artists such as Nat "King" Cole, Nancy Wilson, Chubby Checker, Louis Armstrong, Sammy Davis, Jr. were accidentally found. To celebrate this amazing discovery, the many recordings of these superstar acts have been remastered to share with music lovers around the world. The first release of the compilation CDs, The Best of New Latin Quarter, Jazz & Blues, Volume 1, climbed to #9 this week on The Billboard Traditional Jazz Chart and the Billboard Jazz Album Chart. One of the few times a Japanese Indie label has charted on Billboard, the CD is gaining spins on more than 200 stations in the U.S., along with nationally syndicated programs such as Music Of Your Life, Cable Radio Network and many more. This set features a rare glimpse of Chubby Checker in blues ballad mode, performing "Georgia On My Mind" and Nat "King" Cole gracing the Sinatra associated "The Way You Look Tonight." Additional compilations are expected to be released in 2010. Named and patterned after the famed New York City Latin Quarter nightclub that hosted legendary artists since 1942, Tokyo's New Latin Quarter -- Japan's jewel of a nightclub built on the site of the suspiciously destroyed original Latin Quarter -- hosted a veritable who's who of American and UK jazz and pop legends from 1959-1989. Jay Warner's worldwide publishing organization National League Music is setting up global distribution for an incredible series of digitally re-mastered "Western Music Comes East" compilations and multi-media projects featuring these rare unearthed treasures. In the U.S., distribution will be handled by Omni/Select-O-Hits. "Over 300 live recordings from artists who appeared at New Latin Quarter have been languishing for almost 50 years," says Shintaro Yamamoto, Chairman of newly formed New Latin Quarter (NLQ) Entertainment. "The new alliance of NLQ Entertainment, Kosaido Akatsuki Corporation of Japan, Parteneri-Whitehouse Alliance Japan and worldwide publishing organization National League Music has changed all that."


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