Archive for June 27th, 2010

Unwrapped Vol. 7 – Back To Basics

The acclaimed Unwrapped series continues its legacy with its collection of “Unwrapped Flips” and returns in 2010 on the heels of last year’s #1 Jazz release, Volume 6 produced by celebrated Drummer extraordinaire Tony Royster Jr. The series looks to break the million mark in sales with this release which also celebrates the label’s 10 year anniversary!

Hidden Beach Recordings released Unwrapped Volume 1 in 2001 and stemmed from what was originally intended as a jam session between seasoned musicians for their own amusement. The album was billed as an exciting project that took conventional thinking and turned it upside down. It involved some of today’s most accomplished instrumental soloists who flipped the process followed by Hip Hop producers and returned the flavor into the bargain by offering infectious renditions of such rap standards like LL Cool J’s “Loungin’”, Biggie’s “One More Chance”, Common’s “The Light”, and OutKast’s “Ms. Jackson”, among many others.

However, it was not only the selection of the tracks that made this album a standout. The sheer quality of the artists involved was breathtaking with such jazz and R&B luminaries as Patrice Rushen, Paul Jackson Jr, Everett Harp and Mike Phillips all taking part. The initial thinking at Hidden Beach was to keep this material in-house for use as fun music at various Hidden Beach events. However, once some DJ heard what was being produced they demanded vinyl copies and as a result of this development, turned their music loving faithfuls on to the Unwrapped concept which has been unmatched by anyone who has tried to duplicate its concept.

Volume 7 is poised to be one of the most impressive showings in collaboration with acclaimed producer and songwriter J.R. Hutson! He is a renaissance music maker, a versatile and professionally trained musician whose rich soundscapes thrill ears across genres. Hutson’s years of experience both in front of the mic and behind the studio soundboard make him one of the hottest commodities in contemporary pop today. With jazz in his heart, pop in his soul, and R&B on the brain, Hutson creates new school electricity sparked by a foundation of old school technique.

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Norman Brown – Sending My Love

One can feel his vibrant energy, when Norman Brown fiercely performs onstage. Assembling a huge fan community he is one of the shining stars of this genre. All started with his debut Just Between Us (1992), followed by the albums After The Storm (1994), Better Days Ahead (1996), Celebration (2000), Just Chillin’ (2002), West Coast Coolin’ (2004), Stay With Me (2007) and Sending My Love, released June 22nd, 2010.

Many of his fans compare his music to George Benson’s guitar performance. This is not pure coincidental, because both artists play Ibanez guitars. That and Norman’s guitar mastery was the reason, George Benson invited Norman to join him on his album Songs and Stories (2009). George commented: “I was surprised at how well Norman handled his vocal parts in the song. His guitar playing is superb, which didn’t surprise me at all, because he’s a fabulous musician. But he also has good vocal range, which did surprise me.”

So we discovered a little secret, Norman Brown has the same qualities as singer and guitarist George Benson. Especially the fans honored his humanity and accessibility, which might be not quite normal for a star of his caliber.

Norman explains the title of his new album “I wanted to send a message to my fans: I am with you.” Norman got great support on this album by artists like Herman Jackson (keyboards), Emmery Williams (piano, programming), Alex Al (bass), Teddy Campbell (drums), Jubu (rhythm guitar) and Kevin Ricard (percussion).

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