Jazz Funk Soul – Life and Times

Contemporary jazz supergroup Jazz Funk Soul was originally founded by keyboardist Jeff Lorber, guitarist Chuck Loeb and sax player Everette Harp. Their same titled debut album unites their skills to create something that is greater than the sum of its participants. Making some impact on fellow musicians and audience is all the group want to do. Life and Times is the much anticipated sequel to More Serious Business (2016) – which included two # 1 Smooth Jazz radio hit singles! With three of today’s top hit makers: Jeff Lorber, Everett Harp, and Paul Jackson, Jr. – artists and producers responsible for selling millions of albums and achieving nearly 50 # 1 jazz radio hits!

Grammy winner Jeff Lorber is famed for launching the career of Kenny G and his productions and collaborations with the greats Dave Koz, Janet Jackson, Lalah Hathaway and Miles Davis. He is one of the most sought after producers and musicians in jazz! The Grammy nominated Paul Jackson, Jr. Is one of the most sought after guitarists in Michael Jackson’s Thriller, several Whitney Houston hits, and many more. Everette Harp has shared the stage with music giants Aretha Franklin, Luther Vandross, Billy Joel and Patti LaBelle. A real hit maker, Jazziz magazine praises his “incredible virtuosity”, the Jazz Times calls him “a rare talent”.

Highlights of the album include “Ready Freddi”, the super funky “Where You’re At” and the spirited “Exotic”. Scheduled for release January 25, 2019 on Shanachie Entertainment Group.

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Isaac Edwards – Begin Again

Isaac Edwards finally reached a point in his life when he decided that he simply had to overcome past regrets in order pursue his dream. A newly married lawyer who litigated hundreds of cases by day during the four years he spent his nights and weekends writing, producing and recording his new album, the saxophonist will take a major step towards realizing his dream when “Begin Again” drops on February 22 on the Songs In My Pocket Music label. The disc mixed by hit saxman Darren Rahn will be preceded by the radio single, “Christina Christina,” an exotic Latin-singed seduction that goes for radio adds on January 14.

Armed with a bachelor’s degree in saxophone and a master’s degree in jazz after studying alongside widely-accomplished saxophonists Eric Marienthal and Jeff Clayton, Edwards has flirted with being a jazz musician by releasing a couple of albums in the early 2000s. The gospel-jazz outing “Here” (2002) was nominated for a Vibe Award, the Canadian equivalent to the Dove Awards. Two years later, his sophomore release, “I’m On My Way,” featured a collaboration with Grammy-winning saxophonist Kirk Whalum. Neither sets were promoted at radio as Edwards’ focus was on holding down his high-stress law position. But the fire inside never dimmed and in 2014, he wrote, recorded and released the new album’s title track as a single, earning most added honors at Billboard when it was serviced to radio. The theme of the song began Edwards’ creative journey that will only be complete when the album drops.

“This album is about starting over and second chances. Being a jazz artist is something I’ve dreamed about ever since I was a teenager. I’ve had some successes along the way and had some regrets as well. With this record, I’m finally putting those regrets in the rear-view mirror. My hope is that listeners will feel inspired to leave the past in the past and renew their hope for a brighter future. Just like the dawn of a new day, each moment in our lives is another chance to do that thing we’ve been dreaming of doing. The thing that keeps us up at night, that we spend our days dreaming about while we are at work. The fire that can’t be quenched; the drive we have deep inside. I believe that is what we need to be pursuing. That’s what this record is for me: it’s evidence that it’s never too late to start over, try something new or become more today than we were yesterday,” said the San Diego-based Edwards, who has opened for multiple Grammy-winning Christian pop icons Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith. Continue reading

Mike Levine – From The Heart

South Florida based composer and pianist Mike Levine is according to his biography since 1981 a composer. He wrote for radio and television shows, commercial jingles and for numerous other musicians. Mike was engaged with the Ross-Levine Band. After that he was comfortable being a side man for several years but always continued writing.

Finally he made the first step to his solo career and released From The Heart in 2006. With the exception of one song Mike has written all tracks. He performs on this album piano or e-piano. He is joined by Hiram Bullock, Dan Warner (guitar), Lee Levin (drums), Richard Bravo (congas), Tony Concepcion, Jason Carder (trumpets), Dana Teboe (trombone), Julio Hernandez, Rafael Valencia, Nick Orta (bass), Mike Scaglioni, Ed Calle (sax), Dana Paul (vocals). Camillo Valencia creates the horn arrangement and Gary Lindsey the string arrangement on one track each.

Rarely do I like a piece of music after the first bars. Headin Home is such an exceptional example. Melody, rhythm and the horn arrangement are highly infectious and equally inspiring. From the Heart is another sonic treasure of the melody man, who tells melodies and doesn’t just play them.

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Robbie Mac – Pause & Reflect

Classy!” “Beautiful!” “A journey for the spirit and soul” This is what listeners are saying about the music of Robbie Mac. Robbie Mac is the premier artist of an up and coming genre called instrumental inspiration. Rob started playing drums for his church at the age of nine. He later earned a music scholarship to play drums at the local community college. In college, he picked up the bass and later on the piano. Rob’s CDs have been distributed within the US from Maine to California, as well as outside countries including Canada and Jamaica.

Rob has been blessed to work and/or record along side of many talented artists and musicians including Kirby D. Trim, Issachar J Watson, Adrian Gill, Nick Williams and Paris Hearn to name a few. Pause & Reflect is the first full Urban-Jazzy Instrumental album released via online distribution only by Robbie Mac – featuring music produced over the last twelve years.

The tracks of this album are available for download at CDBaby.

Charles Matthews Jr. – Interpretations

Charles Matthews Jr. oversees many special events around the city of Toronto. He is trusted be some of the top companies in the industry for his style and open ideas. With more than 25 years of entertainment experience, Charles has worked on several valuable projects, including JN Bank outlook, Carabram and Pan am Games.

His new project is titled Interpretations and covers favorite tunes, which have stand the test of time.

We discovered this gem under a huge pile of music at CDBaby.

Larry White – It Must Be Love

Singer-songwriter Larry White has long been recognized as one of the top talents in the music business, arranging conducting and performing for Film, TV, Broadway and the Recording Industry. After college, he toured world-wide, performing with the vocal group “The Sandpipers” whose many hits included “Guantanamera” and “Come Saturday Morning.” After a few years on the road Larry looked for an opportunity to use more of his musical skills. In addition to being on staff as a songwriter with Motown, he began a long and successful career in musical direction, first in television, and then arranging and conducting for some of the biggest stars in the industry including Michael Buble, Harry Connick Jr., Celine Dion, Kenny Rogers, Dionne Warwick, Michael Bolton, John Denver, Little Texas, Charlie Pride, The Carpenters, Johnny Mathis, Randy Travis, Tom Jones, Engelbert Humperdink, Oscar Peterson, Chet Atkins and many more. He also had a special long-time relationship as Musical Director for Dusty Springfield, who in addition to being a dear friend, was Larry’s favorite artist. Among the songs he orchestrated for her: “The Look Of Love,” “You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me,” and “Son of a Preacher Man.”

Larry has also conducted almost every major symphony orchestra throughout the United States and Canada. Looking for new challenges, in 2004 Larry returned to his first love… singing and playing his own music… contemporary jazz. Larry has been compared vocally to Al Jarreau, Boz Scaggs and Michael Franks, although his style is uniquely his own. The songs he writes along with co-writer Margaret White (his wife) are a unique blend of Jazz and R&B, with wonderful chord changes and interesting melodies. Their catalog of original material has grown to over 200 songs.

His new album It Must Be Love is now on sale at CDBaby.

Mike Levine – Thinking Of You

Miami based composer and pianist Mike Levine never understood music as art for art’s sake, but as an interpersonal link and communicative element. Unlike many other musicians who spend their time as multi-instrumentalists in their own studios, Mike seeks contact with his fellow musicians.

So his second album Thinking Of You (2011) also features many musical companions. To mention are Will Lee, Julio Hernandez, Rafael Valencia, Nick Orta (bass), Ed Calle, Ed Maina (sax), Billy Ross (flute), Lee Levin, Sam Levine (drums), Dan Warner, Lindsey Blair, Aaron Lebos (guitar), Richard Bravo, Carlomagno Araya, Nelson “Flaco” Padron (percussion), Wendy Pedersen (vocals), Dana Teboe (trombone), Jeff Kievet (trumpet), Tony Concepcion (fluegel horn), Gary Lindsey (strings arrangement), and Miami Symphonic – Strings Concert Master – Alfredo Oliva.

With the exception of two covers Mike has written all songs. Gettin Ready opens the album with astonishing freshness. Top-notch musicians let the song groove. Walking Tall is an energetic piece with a lot of horn power in the style of Tom Scott or Greg Adams.

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