Robert Harris – Miami Sun

Detroit native, Robert Harris grew up listening to the music of George Benson, Stevie Wonder, Hall & Oats and the song writers of the seventies. It was there that his musical aspirations began at the early age of 12. At 16, he began playing guitar, and within a year was playing throughout the Detroit area at coffee houses, local restaurants and clubs. After high school, Robert made his way to the Seattle area. He spent several years touring the West Coast before heading south to Los Angeles. Within a year of being in L.A., Robert was signed with West Management & Record Company, where they produced Harris’ first CD project Don’t Wait.

Robert’s natural talent for the engineering side of the recording business resulted in him quickly becoming the head engineer at the West studio. He spent the next 10 years in L.A. arranging and producing projects and as a studio musician and sideman. Eventually he opened his own studio, Fast Trak Recording Studios. However, he missed performing and moved to Central Florida to forge a solo career. With the best musicians he could gather, he formed the Robert Harris Group and now performs regularly at festival and clubs all over the state.

Robert’s first solo smooth jazz CD Cool Breeze was released in 2004.  Another project, City Lights offers a rich mix of rhythm and melodies with a feel good vibe. Joining Harris on the recording are Jimmy Seay on bass, Bruce Nardi on saxophone and flute, Michael Kahn on saxophone, and Steve Takahashi who assisted Harris with the drum programming.  A new album is entitled Miami Sun and available at CDBaby.

Tim Bowman – Tim Bowman

Hailing from Detroit heading to joy and worship Tim Bowman started his career as musical director and lead guitarist of famous group The Winans. After his departure in 1987 he focused his life on recording his own music. His debut album Love, Joy, Peace (1996) quickly peaked the charts. With the following albums Paradise (1998), Smile (2000), This Is What I Hear (2004) and his self-titled CD (2008) he fostered his huge fan base.

We have to wait some time for his next album. So let’s listen to his latest one. Tim Bowman assembled a brilliant cast of musicians on his album. Freddie Fox (rhythm guitar), Mel Brown (bass), Mike Broening (piano), Darren Rahn (sax, organ, keyboards), Jeff Lorber (piano), Najee (sax), and Kirk Whalum (sax) are among this great list of musicians.

Sweet Sundays fulfills your guitar dreams with catchy licks and chords. The song topped the charts for two weeks, staying there more than five months. The combination of elegant guitar style and hooking melody is irresistible.

High Def witnesses the inspirational cooperation between Grammy-awarded producer Michael Broening and Tim Bowman guitar genius. For You My Love showcases another facet of Bowman’s music. Produced by Randy Scott, who also performed all other instruments, this song is an acoustical highlight. A record producer, composer and musician proficient on all musical instruments, Randy Scott has performed and/or recorded with Michael Powell, Grover Washington Jr. and many more.

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Archie “Ajay” Jackson – Pressing On

Archie “Ajay” Jackson‘s interest in music was sparked by watching his family at their monthly jam sessions. Seeing that they did not have a bass player, he decided to learn how to play this instrument. At the age of 15, he taught himself how to play the bass. He performed his first professional gig two years later at a local pub with the Blues group, “Miki “L’ and Star Time.” They opened up for several Blues greats, including Bobby Rush and Lefty Diz.

His first recording experience was with Blues artist Milwaukee Slim on Blue Moon Records. He played several tracks on the album titled Lemmon Avenue as Junior Mc Caleb (Jamming Jay). Later, he started venturing off into different styles of music – Funk, Jazz, Neo-Soul and Rock. He joined several local groups in the Twin Cites (Banther, Curb Feelers, Shag, Fresh Water and Red Veda) and performed locally as well as New York, Chicago, Boston and Austin, Texas. He also recorded an alternative rock CD with John Sudusky which was played on college campuses and Alternative rock stations. At age 35, he got saved and devoted his talents to God. As a member of Church of Minneapolis (formerly Resurrecting Faith), he have recorded two CDs with Connell Lewis and Cornerstone – They That Wait and Urban Gospel. To date, he is a member of Church of Minneapolis under Apostle Connell Lewis, where he plays every Sunday and Wednesday.

He has recently finished  his first solo CD entitled Pressing On. Pressing On brings out some uplifting jazz grooves bound together by this upcoming Jazz Artist. The CD is very infectious from the first track, by the time you get to the song “Minister” you might find yourself hoping this is track 3 and you have 7 more to go. Ajay’s love for the Bass is on full display.

You’ll find yourself moving some body parts during the title song, that’s guaranteed. Jazz lovers and music enthusiasts you now have another CD to add to your collection and this one’s hot! Taste it at CDBaby.

Geri Allen & Timeline – Live

On June 8, composer, performer, and scholar, Geri Allen will follow up her ambitious and critically lauded solo piano project, Flying Toward The Sound (March 30) with her first “live” recording: Geri Allen & Timeline – Live. These tandem releases mark her debut on the Motéma Music label. Fred Kaplan of Stereophile said of Flying Toward the Sound, “…she takes the art well beyond what many might expect of her. The sound quality is also superb: liquid and percussive. Get this, listen closely, and hang on tight.”

Whereas ‘Flying Toward the Sound’ documented Allen’s intimate, completely personal pianistic vision, Geri Allen & Timeline – Live reveals a populist and gregarious side of Allen’s musicality. Allen’s Timeline quartet, which has been touring successfully in the US and Europe for the past two years, represents another facet of the inspirational Geri Allen, in which she embraces the rhythmic grounding and, in fact, the very origins of syncopation through jazz in motion, with an extraordinary ensemble featuring veteran bassist Kenny Davis, and brilliant new talents Kassa Overall on multi-percussion set and tap sensation Maurice Chestnut.

Geri Allen & Timeline – Live is the first “live” recording of Allen’s 30 year career, and was recorded at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in Ohio, and Reed College, in Portland, Oregon. These two exciting live performances feature Allen’s working quartet nimbly and ferociously interacting with each other, reinventing the dialog between the dance and the drums. Timeline celebrates the dance and the music together as one.

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Chris Geith – Island Of A Thousand Dreams

Chris Geith knows a secret. The secret of success. His sophomore album Prime Time was one of the best selling albums on mp3.com holding the Nr.1 position in the charts smooth jazz, jazz fusion and contemporary urban/R&B over months. The album was downloaded more than 1,400,000 times.

His new album Island Of A Thousand Dreams is released at CDBaby and currently the best selling album in Smooth Jazz. Members of his group are Chris Geith – Piano/Keyboards, Fred Scerbo – Saxophones, Matt Marshak – Guitars, Mark Mullers – Bass, Dean Kosh – Drums. The same musicians have recorded this album with the exception of the drummer, who was Donny J D on the album. All songs were composed, arranged and by Chris Geith.

The album is packed with fifteen songs, enough for over one hour music. We tumble into the album with Watch Your Step, a sizzling tune with a great piano line, propelling shuffle beat and a broad horn support. Easy Does It appeals with an attractive melody, the first approach to the imaginary island of dreams.

Once In A Lifetime is a good place for Chris Geith expansive piano journey. Avoid to listen to Coastal Daydreaming, when you are driving your car. Caught by this song you could easily crash. Chris Geith shines on the romantic ballade The Mirror Of Happiness. If you love the music of Richard Clayderman, Jim Brickman and David Foster, this is something for you.

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2nd Planet – The Next Level

2nd Planet, discovered in the year 2000, is a diverse music experience specializing in the styles of contemporary jazz, rock, r&b and funk. The Northern California based band consist of 4 musicians who utilize their creative gifts to electrify music listeners with their original brand music as displayed their newest 2010 release, titled The Next Level. You will find that the music on this release is more guitar driven than the previous title release “Beyond the Surface”, but equally enjoyable!

2nd Planet performs in Northern California’s San Francisco bay area and Sacramento area concert venues and also has co-headlined with internationally recognized artists such as Paul Jackson Jr and Ray Obiedo.

Fly to this planet at CDBaby.

Terje Lie – Urban Vacation

Norwegian native Terje Lie decided to move to the U.S. like many other European musicians because of Europe’s cultural music desert, when it comes to smooth jazz or contemporary jazz. His decision was right on the money.

“It’s great to look back and think about all the different styles of music I’ve played and the wide variety of places I have performed in my life,” Lie says. “When I’m on stage performing or recording music in the studio, time disappears.”

Saxophonist Terje Lie started his solo career with the album Traveler (2007) featuring contemporary jazz greats Jimmy Haslip and Jeff Lorber. “Jeff and Jimmy enlightened me to many new angles and concepts that made this a fantastic experience for me. It’s been a great thing to record with them and the result is a seriously kickin’ album!”

Understandable that his sophomore album Urban Vacation (2010) was produced and performed by the same successful duo. Besides these musicians plays Tony Moore most of the drum parts. Additional guest-musicians are Mike Landau (guitar), Sharon Perry (vocals), Ernest Tibbs (bass), Jeff Olson (drums), Dwight Sills (guitar), Gary Meek (sax), and Ron King (trumpet).

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