Posts Tagged ‘ Turn It Up ’

Steve Cole – Turn It Up

Saxophonist Steve Cole has made a great impact on the smooth jazz scene with Stay Awhile (1998), Between Us (2000), NY LA (2003), Spin (2005), True (2006), Moonlight (2011) and Pulse (2013).

Now he returns with a new shining star. Turn It Up is his call. The supporting team hasn’t changed very much compared to his previous album. David Mann (sax, flute, keyboards, synth bass, programming), Ricky Peterson (Hammond B3), Nicholas Cole (keyboards, synth bass, programming), Khari Parker (drums), Bernd Schoenhart (guitar) are being strengthened by Lamar Jones (bass), James Lloyd (piano) and Keith Fluitt (vocals).

Turn It Up is produced by David Mann. His specialty are fine horn arrangements giving every sax album a powerful background. Sidechain starts pumped up that way. Trevor Neumann on trumpet, Dan Levine on trombone and David Mann on sax flavor Cole’s performance.

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Steve Cole – Turn It Up

TurnItUpKnown for consistently cranking out chart-topping singles that deploy big vibrant pop hooks, contemporary jazz saxophonist Steve Cole conjures a sonic escapade with the hypnotic “Mirage,” the first single from his forthcoming eighth album, Turn It Up, which will be released July 15 by Artistry Music. Radio programmers were instantly spellbound, making the track from the David Mann-produced set of R&B grooves and soul-powered sojourns the No. 1 most added single on the Billboard BDS chart.

The entrancing single on which electronic beats bombard the senses before chill tenor and soprano sax leads and a soothing trumpet undercurrent take command of the illusion is one of nine new songs on the session, eight of which were composed or co-composed by Cole. The tune reflects his hometown roots and ardor for Chicago’s dance music scene. It’s one of three major cities that helped shape the collection.

“I embarked on ‘Turn It Up’ with the goal of making music with great musicians and great friends in great cities. This time around I wrote much of the music with Dave Mann in New York City. We recorded horns, guitars and vocals there as well. The energy in that great city was truly inspiring and it really is reflected in the music. Next stop was Minneapolis, where I worked with the great keyboardist and producer Ricky Peterson. Ricky and I wrote the song ‘Workhouse’ together, a track influenced by our love of Chicago house music. Dave joined us later in Minneapolis to record Ricky on the Hammond B3 organ as well as to record my Chicago pals, bassist Lamar Jones and drummer Khari Parker. I decided to track all of the saxophone parts in Minneapolis as well,” explained Cole, who has a slate of festival and club dates running into mid-October to help support the album release. Continue reading

Kevin Coelho – Turn It up

Already drawing comparisons to Joey Defrancesco, young Kevin Coelho is making his mark as one of the up-and-coming jazz organists. Just 17 at the release of Turn It up (Chicken Coup Records, 2013), Coelho is showing mastery of the Hammond B3.

The album covers a wide swath of material, including some standards, covers of pop songs, a tribute to past Hammond compositions and original songs. Accompanying him are guitarist Derek DiCenzo and drummer Reggie Jackson.

“Root Down,” composed by B3 icon Jimmy Smith, is a lively groove that features all three musicians. Even when playing backup to the leader, DiCenzo and Jackson are firmly locked in, each putting his own stamp to the sound. For his part, Coelho makes the organ sing with vigor.

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Andrew Vandell – Turn It Up

My first contact to young saxophonist Vandell Andrew was in 2011, when I reviewed his album Years Later… This album was his treatment of the shocking experience after the distorting roll over of Katrina.

Back to normality Vandell presents this year Turn It Up, an EP with five pieces. These high-energy instrumental songs are produced by Nate Harasim, Landa Gherrá, and Vandell Andrew.

The EP starts with the real burner Let’s Ride. The tune is so fast paced, that old bones are shaken properly. Keyboardist Nate Harasim creates on a clubbing shuffle beat the ideal platform for Vandell’s intoxicating performance.

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Vandell Andrew – Turn It Up EP

Turn It UpVandell Andrew’s self-titled debut EP contains just three tracks, but those combined ten minutes speak volumes about the rising sax player. If listeners dig a little deeper, they’ll discover a unique story behind his music. Andrew grew up in New Orleans and started playing trumpet at age 13, soon switching to saxophone at the behest of a teacher. Eventually, Andrew enrolled at Southern University and began studying music under the legendary, improvisation-focused educator and performer Edward “Kidd” Jordan. But Andrew’s opportunity to learn from the master was cut short by the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, forcing him to move to Dallas, Texas at age 18. After five years of acclimating himself to Dallas’ music scene, he’s now a rising sax star at the exhilarating age of 23, finding himself in the company of jazz greats like Kirk Whalum and Tom Braxton. This self-titled EP is his first release, and it’s easy to hear how a decade of playing and a life growing up around musicians have coalesced into the mature, confident sound heard here.

Immediately, Andrew’s fearlessness is evident. There’s a certain amount of youthful swagger, blended with his regimented marching-band chops and years of study that pervades his approach. While the overall sound of the EP is mellow, modern cool that often borders on smooth or cocktail, jazz, there’s simply no denying Andrew’s singular voice. Even on the rhythmically mild-mannered opener “Walk My Way,” where breezy acoustic guitars meet swirling synthesizer warbles and neighborly drumming, the sax is noticeably restless. Andrew is a pure, clean player, a trait that often stands in contrast to the whims of musicians with his level of creativity. Improvisers so gifted frequently follow their spirit instead of fussing with sonic quality, but Andrew is able to strike a balance. His big, clear blowing only serves to amplify the impact of his melodic creativity, as evidenced by the playful intro of “At Midnight.” On this emotive tune, Andrew lends drama even to a couple offhanded buildup notes before getting into some conversational, sultry playing that makes an awful lot of entertainment out of 4 minutes.

None of the songs veer very far from the well-traveled, linear track laid by smooth bass grooves, restrained drumming, and broad rhythmic backdrops provided by synthesizers. The final track, “Affliction” is full of bold piano and evocative playing by Andrew, propelled by a beat that is almost purposefully benign. While it’s true that too much rhythmic diversion would dampen the impact of Andrew’s resonant notes, it would have been nice, just for a few of the EP’s five hundred and fifty-nine seconds, to hear what the guy can do when turned completely loose. The crisp, clean air of the smooth jazz set is a fine and fruitful place to be, but Andrew possesses a load of talent begging to be unleashed, and this EP doesn’t give us a very good view of its scope. This release is, hopefully, merely a teaser of what the world will eventually hear from Vandell Andrew.

Turn It Up now at CDBaby.

Michael Houston – Turn It Up

“You can drive to this, chill to this, step to this whatever you desire” quotes Michael. And that is the truth….”it’s romantic, sophisticated, and just plain inspiring” he adds….. It’s Inspirational Jazz!

“Melodies are what we sing. When we can’t remember words or the beat, the melody is what we all draw upon to reflect the songs that inspire us all,” confides Michael Houston, the catalyst behind this blend of melodic soulful but rhythmic collaboration of artists and some of music’s greatest moments.

This formula is what makes the Michael Houston Group, (producer/composer/ artist Michael Houston, vocalist Tonya Martin, saxophonist Adam Thompson, bassist Jeremy Taylor, drummer Josh Humphrey) so infectious to listen to!

Michael Houston’s latest release Turn It Up marks a milestone in his musical journey as a producer/ instrumentalist. “Houston is going his own way in Jazz; his crystalline keyboard sound recalls the Fender Rhodes style in the eighties.” quotes Chuck Workman- writer for Nuvo Magazine. Houston’s music combines a mixture funk grooves, retro sounds, infectious melodies and fiery improvisations.

A potent blend which will make you want to Turn It Up at CDBaby!