Archive for January, 2020

Mike Phillips – Pulling Off The Covers

Mount Vernon native Mike Phillips was over several years an integral part of the label Hidden Beach Recordings. Phillips’ debut album, You Have Reached Mike Phillips, was released by Hidden Beach in May 2002. In 2005 followed his sophomore album Uncommon Denominator. You can also listen to his signature sax on Hidden Beach’s serial Unwrapped Vol. 1, 2, 4, 5 and 7. But Mike is far more creative. He performed on Experience: Jill Scott 826+ (2001), Stevie Wonder’s A Time To Love (2005), or Tom Braxton’s Bounce (2005), to name a few. His next project was MP3, which has been released July 27th, 2010.

Ten years later he returns with his new album Pulling Off The Covers. This album is a collection of favorites re-imagined by Mike Phillips as only he can. Including features from: Stevie Wonder, Brian McKnight, PJ Morton, Trombone Shorty, & Raheem DeVaughn. The CD is soon available in all stores. Now you can pre-order it on Mike’s website.

Drew Davidsen – It’s Time

International singer, songwriter, guitarist, Drew Davidsen, is releasing new music, “It’s Time.” Drew is no stranger to radio airwaves having previously released 7 albums while charting an the Billboard Chart 5 time as an independent recording artist. Guitarist Drew Davidsen started in 2007 his solo career with This Journey. Soon followed Around (Again) (2009), We 3 Stringz (2010), Spin Cycle (2011), True Drew (2013), and A Good Life (2017). With InnerSpace (2018) Drew returned to the smooth jazz genre.

Drew’s newest offering, It’s Time, (2019) is a refreshing blend of what’s possible when you take the elements of Pop, Rock, Blues, and Jazz, then intertwine these styles with his signature. guitar playing and unique vocals.

Peet Project – Up & Downs

Hungary has a lot to offer, its specialties, its nature, the beautiful capital. However its famous export is music. In the smooth jazz genre a new Hungarian group has established, Peet Project. The group comprised currently of violinist, composer, producer Peter “Peet” Ferencz, saxophonist Attila Závodi, keyboardist Olivér Magán, bassist Martin Gudics, and drummer Marcell Gudics.

Everything started with their debut Pink Spirit, released in 2010. Their sophomore album Turn You On already followed in 2011, then Overseas (2013) and Love (2015). Their next endeavor was The Bad Boys Of Budapest (2017) and offered guest appearances by keyboardist Jonathan Fritzén, saxophonist Dave Koz, bassist, singer Gáspár Laci and singer James Copley from the band Electro Deluxe.

Their newest album Up & Downs will be released February 14, 2020. Discount pre-order will start January 20, 2020 on their website.

Artur Bayramgalin – Green Sapphire

Hailing from Ufa, Russia multi instrumentalist Artur Bayramgalin is still a secret tip in the smooth jazz genre. In view of the large number of new releases, foreign musicians find it difficult to improve their popularity significantly. His debut album Interro Island came out in 2009, his sophomore album Electric Breezz followed in 2010 and his third album Perfect Day in 2014.

In 2018 Artur was involved in a serious traffic accident. After recovery his main desire was starting writing music again. Now he returns with his new album Green Sapphire (2020), which is available on CDBaby.

Artur comments: “I had a dream, standing alone with my father on the bank of a deep stream. He wanted to give me the green crystal and said it was very important and should be protected. I accidentally dropped it in the stream, but managed to grab it and save it. When I woke up, I wrote the song Green Sapphire. And with this track, I finally started working on a new album.”

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Adam Hawley – Escape

The four years since dropping his debut album has been a bit of a rocket ride for award-winning R&B-jazz guitarist Adam Hawley. Six of his seven singles have gone to No. 1 nationally and he deftly avoided the sophomore slump when his second outing further established the artist as a centerstage solo artist. The stage is now being set for the February 28th arrival of “Escape,” his third album and first for his new record label, MBF Entertainment. Hawley produced and wrote eight of the record’s ten tunes featuring collaborations with a constellation of smooth/contemporary jazz luminaries including Rick Braun, Najee, Michael Lington, Jeff Ryan, Marcus Anderson and Greg Manning.

Hawley’s albums adopt themes and as he composed the title cut for “Escape,” he felt transported. That feeling inspired the rest of the music he wrote for the collection.

“When I wrote ‘Escape,’ it really took me away to another, special place. The groove, the vibe…it just transported me to a place of chill and Zen. That became the theme that runs through the entire record,” said Hawley, a Portland, Oregon native who has resided in the Los Angeles area ever since earning a Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Southern California. Continue reading

Darius Owens – Love & Life

In his home town of Texarkana, Texas a love for music was kindled at the early age of 5, as Darius Owens sat with his church pianist on Sunday mornings to stay out of trouble. With grandparents who sang, parents who played instruments, older siblings and cousins who did both, Darius was surrounded by music. Growing up in a family of vocalists and musicians, it was only a matter of time before a young Darius would claim his place in the musical world.  True to this sentiment, 3 years later, the kindled flame for music ignited to a roaring fire as Darius finally got to touch a piano for the first time.  Thus began his journey to develop in the musical world. From elementary through high school he worked to master his craft on several instruments, which eventually led him through college (where he decided to pursue his career professionally) and on to his current voyage as a professional musician.

Since moving to Houston in 2006, where he still resides, Darius graduated from Prairie View A&M University majoring in Music with an emphasis in Trombone and a minor in classical piano.  He has accomplished many endeavors and still works as a private instructor, public school music teacher, vocal coach and director.  He specializes in production, piano, trombone, percussion, and voice. His debut album Love & Life is inspired by a lifetime of experience.

Get this album as download on CDBaby.

Ronny Smith – Raise The Roof

Baltimore based jazz guitarist Ronny Smith is certainly one of the most underrated guitarist in music history. Often compared with George Benson, Wes Montgomery and Joe Pass he has since long time developed his own significant style.

That this unique style appeals the audience, shows the huge amount of releases like Long Time Comin (2001), Laid Back (2002), Got Groove (2006), Simply Stated (2007), Just Groovin (2009) and Can’t Stop Now (2013). Shake It Up (2017) is his essential return with a special twist.

Ronny is now on the Skytown Records label and his first album is Raise The Roof. You can pre-order this album on Amazon.com.

Chris Standring – Real Life

Jazz guitarist Chris Standring is one of the rare guitarists, which have been blessed with significant success. Toughly earned, this success rests on numerous pillars. Chris knows the music business and runs his own record label. He seeks collaboration with other artists. And remains on everyone’s lips through numerous appearances and record releases. In the end, however, it is his style with high recognition value that distinguishes him from other musicians.

His new album Real Life (2020) fits seamlessly into this chain of success. Chris performs on his new project guitars, keyboards and programming. He is accompanied on selected tracks by Andre Barry (bass), Chris Coleman, David Karasony (drums), Mitchel Forman (acoustic piano), Ronnie Gutierrez (percussion), Kevin Axt (upright bass), Hans Zermulen, Matt Rhode (Fender Rhodes), Iris Almario (handclaps), Vanessa Haynes (vocals), and Lauren Christy (background vocals).

Is There A Doctor In The House? With this provocative question, which today even implies political meaning, Chris titles his introductory song. What sounds like the harmonic intro chorus of Take 6 is based on a finely programmed vocal sample. In earlier time we called Chris’ guitar style acid jazz, meanwhile it’s the sonic highlight of every event.

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Chase Huna – Life Of The Party

Chase Huna always had a love for jazz and a love for the saxophone.  He began playing at age 10 and by age 14 was already on stage at Spaghettini Seal Beach. From La Quinta, CA and recently out of high school,  his newest single is co-written and produced by Grammy winning guitarist/producer Paul Brown. His first CD “On the Chase” with 10 upbeat and moving songs co-written and produced by music great and hit maker Steve Oliver, has quickly made its way up the charts.  After turning 19 in June, Chase is ready and looking forward to a career in composing, recording and touring.  Along with the many jazz festivals lined up for this year, he can still be found making special appearance performances in the Palm Springs/Palm Desert area.

His new album Life Of The Party is coming January 17, 2020.

Lou Guldemond – That’s It!

Lou Guldemond  is a self-taught guitarist from Netherlands with a wide track record. Lou’s great inspiration is Jan Akkerman, furthermore he is particularly influenced by the great fusion guitarists of the seventies such as Lee Ritenour, Larry Carlton and Eric Gale. In the Duin and Bollenstreek, Lou became famous in the late seventies with the bands “First Love” and “Bahama Bambu”. In the 80s and 90s he played, among other things, in fusion group Top Secret (ao Toon Roos) and Batida (ao Josée Koning). In the late 90s, his focus shifted more to soul and funk. At the time, he played with the world famous soul group Sister Sledge and in the following seasons he did three theater tours with Big, Black & Beautiful.

In 2012, Lou releases his highly anticipated solo album “That’s It!”, A funky fusion production with the crème de la crème of the Dutch studio scene. Since December 2012, Lou has been playing with the successful Nu-Jazz Big Band “Licks & Brains” based on saxophonist Rolf Delfos (ao Jazzinvaders).

This album is available for the first time on CDBaby.