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

May 29th, 2004
Edition #326 Previously Next

Welcome to the radio program that is unique by design. On today's edition, we're checking out the cool sounds of Matt Marshak. After winning a contest as the best new SJ artist in NYC, Marshak comes to with his latest effort titled This Time Around. We'll tell you a bit about Matt & his music and we'll spin a few tracks from that album on the showcase cd feature. Then in hour 2 it's time for the FT segment. On this installment we have brand new music from Torcuato Mariano. The Argentine-born Brazilian-bred guitarist has just released a new cd, his first in several years and we have a great track from that. As well we'll be hearing from Marcus Johnson and Elliot Levine and we're also introducing the music of Jon Dalton. Add to that an incredible track from Spyro Gyra and their new one & you know it's gonna be a dynamite show. Once again, these all are on the FT segment in hour 2.

In This Issue:

This Time Around - Matt Marshak

18th & M - Marcus Johnson
High Frequency - Torcuato Mariano
The Gift - Jon Dalton
In Your Arms - Spyro Gyra
Urban Groove - Elliot Levine

But wait, there's more. Bernard Oattes, Ray Obiedo, and Randy Crawford all produced some classic tracks that helped define the smooth jazz genre but for whatever reason they just aren't played much anymore. Now that gives us all the more reason to include them on our show. More spectacular sounds from yesteryear are provided courtesy of Dave McMurray, Danny Jung, and Ronny Jordan. We have another superb selection from Peter White's Confidential; and from our list of current favourites, Gene Dunlap, Terry Disley, Barry Aiken & Shikandaza all contribute to this show. And if that wasn't enough, we also have a blast from Australia's Noel Elmowy from a few years back. Just tune in and I'm certain that you'll discover more great music in two hours on our show than you'll find in a month of Sunday's listening to ordinary radio.

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Showcase CD
This Time Around - Matt Marshak:
A promising young artist, Marshak well exemplifies the fantastic new breed of player that is emerging in contemporary music. Matt knew at an early age that his passion for playing would be his life. He became involved in the NYC scene and was soon performing regularly as a sideman. In short order, he recorded his own debut album, did oodles of gigs in and around the Big Apple and all the while worked at honing his style and refining his sound. He was in the process of completing his sophomore project, when he submitted some finished tracks to an artist search cosponsored by CD101.9, the SJ radio station for the area. After being one of about a thousand entrants Marshak found his name to be among the 12 finalists, eventually winning that contest and earning recognition as the Best New Smooth Jazz Artist in New York City. No wonder either as Matt expertly blends jazz, pop, blues, and soul with hip rhythms and enticing melodies. Out for just a short while, This Time Around is Marshak's new release.
It's packed with several superb pieces that well encapsulate Marshak's fresh & creative style and as such this cd makes a fabulous choice for our feature. On this occasion we begin with Good Evening, the groove-driven opening track, move to Quietly at the start of hour 2; and then bring the entire affair to a heady climax with the charged selection I Will Be With You . If this is where the music of today is headed then I can hardly wait til we get there.

CD: This Time Around
Label: Nuance/Kemistre
Site: Matt Marshak

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Fresh Trax: Part One
18th & M - Marcus Johnson:
Johnson began playing piano at six and although his mother played classically, Marcus didn't entertain music as a viable career path until he saw an Earth, Wind & Fire concert at the age of nine. Inspired by all forms of music from rap and hip-hop to R&B, from contemporary jazz and be-bop to classical, Johnson began approaching his instrument more seriously in his early teens. He spent six months as a music engineer and tech major and then began to simultaneously pursue a degree in law and an MBA all while continuing to work in music. This gave Johnson all the tools he needed to establish his own production company a couple of years later. Now some time and several business moves later, Johnson's solo career continues to evolve with the release of Just Doing What I Do. From that effort, we present 18th & M.

*Final cover art is not currently available.*

CD: Just Doing What I Do
Label: Three Keys Music
Site: Marcus Johnson/Three Keys

High Frequency - Torcuato Mariano:
A native of Argentina, who moved to Brazil as a teenager, Mariano grew up listening to the music of his own country as well as to that of American artists such as Santana and Stevie Wonder. In the earlier years of his career, Torcuato won recognition as an award winning pop composer; and as a highly sought after player he toured with such notables as Sergio Mendes and Ivan Lins. It wasn't until the mid 90's that Mariano moved to establishing his solo career with a pair of releases that earned him some well deserved international exposure. In 1998 however, Torcuato chose to work in a different aspect of the music industry as he became head of A&R for a major label in Brazil. It was during this period, that the ideas for Mariano's current project first took root, so that now, after a hiatus of nearly ten years, Torcuato has just issued Diary. On this his third solo outing, the seasoned performer delivers an accomplished blend of jazz and Brazilian sounds with several musical highlights that might best be described as outstanding. From that release, High Frequency is the track that we've chosen on this occasion.

CD: Diary
Label: 215 Records

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Fresh Trax: Part Two

The Gift - Jon Dalton:
For years Dalton was well known as a top performer and composer on the jazz scene in the UK. He performed regularly at concerts, many of which were recorded for broadcast on BBC Radio. In 1999, Jon relocated to Southern California to further his career. Bearing a style that's rooted in the classic sounds of the past, Dalton plays in a highly melodic manner and in a fashion that has drawn favourable comparisons to masters such as Wes Montgomery, Kenny Burrell, and Pat Metheny. In spite of this, Dalton's presentation is completely contemporary. He draws on influences from outside of the sphere of jazz as he incorporates elements of R&B and present-day dance music. As well, he's maintained a working relationship with John O'Hara, a producer and arranger on the other side of the Atlantic who shares many of the Jon's tastes and philosophies in music. The first fruits of their collaboration are The Gift, Dalton's solo debut. From that effort we've selected the title track and one that became a favourite the instant that I heard it. This track is quite simply sublime.

CD: The Gift
Label: Dit-Da Communications
Site: Jon Dalton/CD Baby

In Your Arms - Spyro Gyra:
Now celebrating 30 years as a band, The Deep End is Spyro Gyra's latest and one on which they continue to set their own course in music. The title of the project is a reference to the emotional deep end that we all experience, and going for things with all you have. With five different composers contributing material, there is an incredible wealth of that emotion for the band to draw upon. From this latest effort, we've selected a beautifully expressive piece written by longtime band member Tom Shuman.

CD: The Deep End
Label: Heads Up International
Site: Spyro Gyra

Urban Groove - Elliot Levine:
Over the years Levine has worked with artists such as Wilson Pickett and opened for many others including Brian McKnight and Freddie Jackson. A couple of years back Elliot had the #1 song on mp3.com with over a million downloads. He's headlined at the Blues Alley and the Kennedy Center and in 2003, he scored the music to an Emmy nominated documentary. In addition he's had three releases which have garnered extensive airplay including some international exposure on programs such as our own. Just out is his latest titled The Funk, The Whole Funk and Nothin' but the Funk. From that effort, Urban Groove is the tune that we're presenting and one that features the fine guitar work of Kevin Powe.

CD: The Funk, The Whole Funk and Nothin' But the Funk
Label: Independent
Site: Elliot Levine

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