Featuring the Smooth Groove of Today's Jazz!
This Week at CaféJazz.ca

May 3, 2003
Edition #287 Previously Next

It didn't start out that way but this show definitely has a bit of a retro theme to it. As I the pieced the music together certain selections just naturally seemed to fit better than others. Don't get me wrong. We have some great new music from artists such as Kim Waters and hot young guitarist Steve Briody, who launches our opening set, but as well, we've included several classic tracks including ones from Bobby Caldwell, Marcos Ariel, and the late Art Porter Jr., among others. After all is said and done though, I hope that you enjoy the finished product - music that is hand picked to soothe your spirit and stimulate your senses!

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Showcase CD
Dual Identity - Larry Gittens & Media :
Gittens is a veteran musician and versatile performer, whose musical story began in a small town in NJ. Self-taught on the trumpet as well as on keyboardist, Larry was named Best Jazz Trumpeter in the state by Down Beat magazine. He went on to study at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, spent some time teamed up with the late Grover Washington Jr., and then landed a gig with Stevie Wonder, appearing on six of Wonder’s most successful recordings. Most recently he’s performed with Kool & the Gang and has been working with bassist Jimmy Haslip and vocalist Bobby Caldwell on a couple of other projects. In the midst of this heavy schedule, Gittens also found time to record Dual Identity, his debut effort as a solo artist. And a very nice cd it is, one that is packed with great melodies and the type of the energy that is often associated only with live performances. As we begin to showcase Dual Identity, we chose Moon Over Sonoma, the opening track from that cd.

Larry Gittens

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Fresh Trax: Part One
Go With the Flow - Walter Beasley :
This is the latest project and seventh overall for the diversely talented saxplayer who is also an associate professor at the Berklee College of Music. Beasley himself attended the acclaimed school and promptly after graduating turned around and joined its teaching faculty. He recorded his own self-titled debut in 1987, and since then has remained committed to not only helping young artists develop their talent but also to helping them find opportunities to work with established performers. In turn Beasley benefits from the energy of his students and is able to keep right up to date with current trends and technologies. The track that opens today’s segment well demonstrates this fact. From Go With The Flow, we have Go With the Flow, the title track.

Walter Beasley
It's A Shame - Paul Jackson Jr. :
A composer, arranger, producer and guitarist, Paul Jackson Jr. is one of the most respected artists in music. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Jackson knew by the age of fifteen that he wanted to become a professional musician. Growing up in a musical family, his parents were extremely supportive and as such, Paul attended USC, majoring in music. Some time after graduating, he connected with pianist and vocalist Patrice Rushen, who introduced Jackson around and in short order he became in demand in the musical community as a highly skilled and versatile session player. It would be easy for anyone to become lost in the sea of talent in the glitter capitol of the world but not so for Jackson. His strong Christian beliefs, his great talent and his work ethic have allowed Paul the opportunity to rise to the top of his chosen field and stand among the world’s finest guitarists.The list of performers with whom Jackson has worked includes another Jackson, that being Michael, as well as Whitney Houston, and many more of the biggest names in entertainment. This, together with the encouragement of another close friend, Ray Parker, Jr., inspired Paul to record his own solo projects. Of these, Still Small Voice is his latest and from it we’ll have It’s a Shame, the lead single.

Paul Jackson Jr.

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Fresh Trax: Part Two
If You Came Back - Acousticsol :
This is the acoustic guitar pairing of John Raymond and Ross Nyberg. Raymond has performed and recorded with Kenny G since 1984. As such he’s appeared just about everywhere that his famous employer has performed and in addition, he’s shared the stage and/or studio with various other artists such as Michael Bolton, George Benson, and Smokey Robinson. Raymond’s latest project teams him with fellow guitarist, Ross Nyberg. Nyberg too is no newcomer to music having performed with many artists including Helen Reddy and Chubby Checker and having produced Paul Revere & The Raiders, and Randy Bachman among others. Acousticsol is their outstanding self-titled debut release.

Cab Driver - Daryl Hall:
Daryl Hall is of course best known for his many years and numerous hits with John Oates as one-half of the most chart-topping duo in music history. The Philadelphia born musician first met Oates in the 60s. They played together for a short time, went their separate ways, reunited a few years later and in the course of things eventually went on to enjoy huge commercial success. The music of Hall & Oates was always well-crafted, with strong melodies and excellent production. It is those very same qualities that are most apparent on Cab Driver, the lead single from Can't Stop Dreaming, Hall's forthcoming solo release.

Hall and Oates

Stingray - The Rippingtons :
Founded back in 1987 by Russ Freeman and fronted by Freeman since it’s inception, the band has consistently been one of the most popular ensembles in Smooth Jazz. The sound and style of the group has continued to evolve as new personnel seem to make their way into the line-up every few years or so. Yet the one constant is Freeman himself, who writes all the songs and is largely responsible for the production duties. This has all resulted in a musical library that is now over a dozen cds deep with Let it Ripp being their latest. From that project we'll be hearing Stingray, the debut single.

The Rippingtons

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