Archive for the ‘ Pop ’ Category

Monkey House – Friday

Monkey House is a band consisting of the core members singer, songwriter, keyboardist Don Breithaupt, drummer Mark Kelso, bassist Pat Kilbride, and guitarist Justin Abedin.

On their new album Friday (2019) the band is supported by the elite Toronto horn section of William Sperandei, Vern Dorge, John Johnson, William Carn and Tony Carlucci, as well as percussionist Art Avalos.

The new album is written by Breithaupt with the exception of one cover. Those who are not familiar with the music of this formation, will quickly remark by listening to 10,000 Hours that this music is neither jazz nor smooth jazz. According to my own musical experience the group is comparable to 10CC, Godley & Creme or Steely Dan.

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Maxine Hardcastle – The Collection

Smooth jazz/soul vocalist Maxine Hardcastle,  daughter of Paul Hardcastle, has released her first album The Collection feat. Paul Hardcastle, Nate Harrasim, Daren Rahn, Dewey Bunnell and Ryan Farish.

From a very young age Maxine was influenced by her father, Paul Hardcastle, an iconic 80’s pop star & music producer. A collaboration between the two hit no.1 on the American billboard charts, and Maxine went on to produce and sing on releases with labels including Universal, Ministry of Sound, Pacha, Hed Kandi, Deeperfect, Nurvous, King street records, regularly hitting top spots across the Beatport charts.

The Collection presents Maxine’s vocal contributions to hit albums like Nate Harasim’s Different Kind Of Love from his album Rush, Darren Rahn’s Speechless from the same titled album, Paul Hardcastle’s A Horse With No Name from his album Hardcastle 8 and many more.

The album is on sale at iTunes.

Tristan – The Spice Of Five

The Dutch formation Tristan consists of the band members Evelyn Kallansee (vocals), Guy Nikkels (guitars), Coen Molenaar (keyboards), Sebastian Cornelissen (drums) and Frans Vollink (bass). Their debut album Full Power (2014) features US soul singer Heston, UK saxophone maestro Nigel Hitchcock and legendary American trumpeter Randy Brecker.

Their sophomore album 2nd Phase followed in 2015. Further albums are Lifestyle (2016) and a Live in Concert album (2017). Their new album The Spice Of Five will be released on April 5, 2019. This time the band didn’t invite other musicians but relied on their own values. The result was a studio album that is quite close to their live music and fully reflects the character of the band.

Hands Up is the ultimate request to the audience to surrender their sympathy for the inviting sonic sound of the group. Stylistically the band stays closely to formations like Incognito, Brand New Heavies or Shakatak whereby the group seeks its own European approach.

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Neamen – Moment Of Truth

Arizona native sax performer Neamen Lyles aka Neamen began his solo career striving to be a smooth jazz star. In this rare case, claim and reality coincide. Recordings and performances with the likes of Jeff Lorber, Rick Braun, Mel Brown, Mindi Abair and sharing events with Dave Koz, Jay Soto, Greg Karrukas and others speak a clear language.

He dispelled all doubts with his debut work So Free (2011), which was highly praised by critics. Now he continues his earlier success and has released his second album Moment Of Truth together with Jay Soto, with whom he also produced his debut album.

Neamen performs on the new album tenor, alto and soprano saxophones, Jay Soto guitars and keyboards. Jay also made mixing and engineering. Additional musicians are Austin Carthell, Rachelle Youngberg, Eric Loveres,  Erika Schiff, Steve Lane and Crystal Stark (lead vocals), Jodi Light (background vocals), Tom Gioia, Marlon McClain (guitars), Mikey B (B3), Mel Brown, Mario Mendivil (bass), Tony Mora, Yon Yokobian (drums and percussion), Rick Peron, Carlos Chavez (trumpet), Bobby Hastings, Bradon Larson (tenor sax) and Hiram Perez (baritone sax).

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Bob Baldwin – Presents Abbey Road And The Beatles

Calling keyboardist Bob Baldwin an active musician borders on simple understatement. He celebrated his twentieth album in 2013 and this year he has already released two albums.

At regular intervals he releases albums in which he thematises certain musicians or groups. On his Tribute to Michael Jackson “Never Can Say Goodbye” (2010) he performed popular songs of the king of Pop. On Betcha By Golly Wow – The Songs By Thom Bell (2012) he encompasses the Philly Sound. On Mellowonder – Songs in The Key Of Stevie (2015) he interpreted songs by Motown hero Stevie Wonder.

This year Bob Baldwin focuses with Bob Baldwin Presents Abbey Road And The Beatles on songs of the Fab Four. By the way his 25th album. Bob plays on this album piano, keyboards, vocals, Vocoder, bass, drums, melodica. On selected tracks he is joined by Dennis Johnson (percussion/atmosphere), Tony Lewis (drums), Dave Anderson (bass), Café’ Da Silva (percussion), CeCe Peniston, Lori Williams (lead vocals), Euge Groove (sax), and Ragan Whiteside (flute).

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Dave Sereny – Talk to Me

Sometimes your talent hides from you, but shines for everyone else. This was just the case for smooth jazz artist, Dave Sereny. Producers who have worked with legends such as R&B superstars Aaliyah and R. Kelly took notice to Dave’s talent, telling him you are going to do a record with me. Recently, one of such notable producers realized Dave’s affinity for singing, encouraging him to take vocal lessons. Six short months later, Dave found his vocal register and mastered it, producing Talk To Me, his first track as both instrumentalist and singer.

“Sereny does the genre great justice here, and it’s a real pleasure to hear quality that is the obvious result of massaging and nurturing each track to perfection. The result is a whole and satisfying package.” (Ronald Jackson, The Smooth Jazz Ride)

Talk To Me is available on Amazon.com.

Kere Buchanan – If You Need Somebody

This album along with the previous one called Starting Over features many artists both from Australia and international guests like Bill Champlin, (ex-Chicago), Louie Shelton, (Seals & Crofts/Lionel Richie/Boz Scaggs) & Robbie Buchanan, (Whitney Houston/George Benson/Sergio Mendes).

A mixture of West Coast Jazz/Pop/RnB like artists Al Jarreau/ George Benson/ Randy Crawford/ Anita baker/ Toto/ James Ingram/ Steely Dan/ Rufus etc.

If You Need Somebody is the vocal alternative available on CDBaby.

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