Posts Tagged ‘ George Benson ’

Various Artists – Smooth Jazz Hits: #1 Chart-Toppers

SJHThis collection features 12 of the hottest, recent Smooth Jazz hits, straight from the tops of the Smooth AC and Smooth Jazz charts. Featuring tracks by Mindi Abair, George Benson, Boney James, Kenny G, and Dave Koz, among other stars of the genre, Smooth Jazz Hits: #1 Chart-Toppers features original hit songs, plus grooving covers of favorites such as the Beatles’ ‘Got to Get You Into My Life,’ Michael Jackson’s ‘Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground),’ and Ne-Yo’s ‘Champagne Life.’ This collection delivers a soulful, classy, and fun way to get the party started!

Get this Smooth Jazz collection at Amazon.com.

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George Benson – My Inspiration: A Tribute to Nat King Cole

InspirationATributetoNatKingColeAfter four years of touring and developing “An Unforgettable Tribute to Nat King Cole,” the legendary George Benson makes his most inspired album: My Inspiration: A Tribute to Nat King Cole. The recording is one of the most meaningful of Benson’s career and is a testament to the spirit of Cole’s timeless body of work. Benson’s heartfelt renditions of some of Cole’s greatest songs with Nelson Riddle arrangements and the 42-piece Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra are complemented by duets with Tony Award winner Idina Menzel and rising star Judith Hill, along with a special collaboration with multi-GRAMMY and Pulitzer Prize-winning trumpeter Wynton Marsalis.

My Inspiration: A Tribute To Nat King Cole album by George Benson is scheduled to be released Jun 04, 2013 on the Concord label. My Inspiration: A Tribute To Nat King Cole CD music contains a single disc with 13 songs. You can order this album at CDUniverse.

George Benson – Guitar Man

George Benson is set to release his next album, entitled, Guitar Man on October 4, 2011. The 12-song collection includes a mix of jazz and pop standards, some in a combo setting and some solo, but all of them tied together seamlessly by Benson’s soulful and exploratory signature sound. Lending a hand on this recording is a solid team made up of veterans and newcomers alike – pianist Joe Sample, keyboardist and musical director David Garfield, bassist Ben Williams and drummer Harvey Mason. Williams is one of the hottest up-and-coming new artists on the jazz scene. Mason is a regular member of Fourplay, and a studio collaborator with Benson all the way back to Benson’s 1976 blockbuster album, Breezin’.

In a career that spans five decades, more than 30 recordings as a leader and ten Grammy Awards, Benson has used his jazz roots as the foundation for an engaging mix of pop, R&B and other shades that add up to a style that appeals to a broad mainstream audience. Along the way, he has also established himself as a formidable jazz singer – one whose biggest career hits have showcased his vocals.

But Guitar Man is just what the title implies – an album that highlights Benson’s unparalleled guitar playing, perhaps more than any other album he has released in decades. For the new project, the crew came together in the studio with a minimum of prior rehearsal time but an eagerness to jump in and lay down tracks in something very close to the live experience – what Benson describes as an “old school” approach.

The impromptu sensibility comes across in the final product, much of which came together with minimal takes in a single day of recording. “We figured that we would get the best energy if we went into the studio with some live musicians who are savvy and flexible,” says Benson, “and boy, did we accomplish that.” Continue reading

Lee Ritenour – 6 String Theory

It’s hard to believe that 2010 marks 50 years since Lee Ritenour starting playing the guitar, setting in motion a career that legends are made of. A career that has earned him 19 GRAMMY® nominations, a GRAMMY Award, numerous #1 spots on guitar polls, A Lifetime Achievement Award from the Canadian SJ Awards, and the prestigious “Alumnus of the Year” award from USC. During his illustrious career, he has recorded over 40 albums, with 35 chart songs and was a founding member of the group Fourplay, considered the most successful group in contemporary jazz. As a young guitarist his diverse musical style became the foundation of over 3,000 sessions, covering a broad spectrum of artists ranging from his first session at 16 with the Mamas and Papas, to Pink Floyd, Steely Dan, Dizzy Gillespie, Sonny Rollins, Simon & Garfunkel and Frank Sinatra. On his latest endeavor, 6 String Theory, Ritenour celebrates the instrument that has allowed him this blessing, the guitar; -by producing and assembling a star-studded tribute with the greatest and soon- to- be greatest guitarists of our time.

For 6 String Theory, Ritenour is also among the twenty legendary world class guitarists starring on the recording, which he produced along with John Burk of the Concord Music Group. Joining him in this tribute to the guitar, the all-star line-up includes: George Benson, BB King, Slash, Steve Lukather, John Scofield, Robert Cray and Vince Gill among many other superstars. Blending rock, blues, jazz, acoustic, country and classical, they come together for a seamless project that promises to take the listener on a musical journey and exploration of the guitar. Also featured on vocals are BB King, Robert Cray, Vince Gill, Keb’ Mo’, Taj Majal, Joe Bonamassa and Jonny Lang.

Ritenour also had a musical mission to help launch a new star of the guitar. To do so, he partnered with Yamaha Corp., Berklee College of Music, Monster Music, D’Addario Strings, and Concord Records to hold the international talent search, The Yamaha 6 String Theory Guitar Competition. Hundreds of contestants from over 45 countries posted YouTube videos to enter the competition with six finalists from around the world (one in each musical catagory) selected at a finals competition in Los Angeles in March 2010. Winning top honors was 16-year-old classical guitarist, Shon Boublil, from Montréal, Canada, who as the winner made his debut recording performance on 6 String Theory and received a four-year full scholarship to the Berklee College of Music.

Ranging from 16 year old Shon, 18 year old, Joe Robinson (winner of Australia’s Got Talent) and BB King in his young 80s, 6 String Theory covers it all, from amazingly talented upcoming guitarists to the greatest guitarists of our time. It also shows the high esteem for which Ritenour is held by his peers enabling him to assemble such an awe inspiring cast of musicians to celebrate their mutual love of the guitar. Blending together styles, ages and musical colors, Lee Ritenour’s 6 String Theory promises to be one of the greatest guitar recordings ever made!

Source: Concord Records

George Benson – Songs And Stories

The release of a George Benson album is always a musical major event. George Benson is legend, icon and musical reference. While jazz fans prefer his sophisticated jazz releases, Benson’s growing popularity is nevertheless build on albums like Give Me The Night and Irreplaceable.

The making of the album Songs And Stories is documented in the George Benson Sessions. As the title indicates is Songs And Stories a collection of popular songs of prolific musicians of the last half century. Nine of the songs are renditions, while three songs, Bill Withers’ A Telephone Call Away, Rod Temperton’s Family Reunion and Lamont Dozier’s Living in High Definition are especially written for George’s new album.

The album opens with Don’t Let Me Be Lonely Tonight, a song by James Taylor, written for his album One Man Dog (1972). Benson recorded his rendition in Sao Paulo, Brazil, with the support of some Brazilian session players. “James Taylor is a great songwriter, and a great performer too,” comments Benson. “Not many people are brave enough to cover his songs because he does them so well himself, and with such simplicity. It’s hard to beat that combination, but I tried my hand at it while I was down there, and it came off so well that I decided to put it on the record.”

Composer Rod Temperton is famous for his Michael Jackson contributions like Rock With You or Thriller. Rod is also composer of George’s all-time hit Give Me The Night. He tailored Family Reunion in a perfect George Benson style. You know, it’s a masterpiece when every note is just at the point.

Continue reading George Benson – Songs And Stories