Archive for September, 2009

Soul Ballet – 2019

Las Vegas born Rick Kelly, the mastermind behind the project Soul Ballet, is a glamorous person. He is known as actor in TV episodes like Cold Case, CSI: Miami and movies like Tail Sting. As musician he started his project Soul Ballet with the self-titled debut (1996). Classified by All Music Guide as smooth contemporary jazz with pulsating electronic beat his chill-out music found soon a constant place in the smooth jazz charts.

His second album Trip The Night Fantastic (1998) exposed trumpet player Ken Ross and sax players Wanselius and Billy Oilen giving his tunes a more instrumental touch. The third album Vibe Cinema (2000) features sax player Sonny Simmons and has a great affinity to smooth jazz. The follow-up Dial It In (2002) renewed Kelly’s collaboration with Ken Ross and presents furthermore Caroline Kafer on sax and vocalist Sera Lynn. Attractive smooth jazz with world music and electronica ornamentation.

In 2004 Rick released the 2-CD-set Dream Beat Dream supported by vocalists Sera Lynn and Trina Dye furthermore flugelhorn player Ken Ross. Rick toyed with many electronic effects although the piano lines were still a dominant factor. The typical mixture of smooth jazz and electronica is also to find on the album Lavish (2007) featuring prominent trumpet player Rick Braun and sax players Richard Elliot and Paul “Shilts” Weimar among others.

With his new album 2019 Rick Kelly leaves his reliable receipt and creates a pure electronica album with strong techno elements. He proudly announces that the complete album was composed, produced, programmed, recorded and mixed on his MAC Intel Core Duo OS running Logic 7.23 and a shitload of pluginz! Techno-craziness replaces natural instruments.

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Paul Jackson Jr. – Lay It Back

Paul Jackson Jr. is worldwide the first-call and most wanted session guitarist. His performance is recorded on more than 1.000 albums, among those Michael Jackson’s Thriller and Bad. Further artists he played with are Luther Vandross, Quincy Jones, Steely Dan, Elton John, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Madonna, Rod Stewart, Barbara Streisand and some hundreds more.

His solo albums are I Came To Play (1988), Out of The Shadows (1990), River in The Desert (1993), Never Alone: Duets (1996), Power Of The String (2001) and Still Small Voice (2003). After a long hiatus Paul Jackson, Jr. presents his new album Lay It Back on his new label Branch Records.

Patrice Rushen (piano), keyboardist Bobby Lyle, bassist Alex Al, vocalist James Reese, Ray Brown (Earth, Wind & Fire horns), The Rickey Minor Band, Rex Rideout, Jeff Lorber, the list of contributing artists is long. Most of them already performed with Paul on stage or in the studios.

The album starts with the funky The Workout. The intro reminds of Pick Up The Pieces signalizing the direction of the tune. Jeff Lorber penned the song while the horns were arranged by Ray Brown. Trumpet player Ray was the section leader of The Earth, Wind & Fire Horns.

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