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This Week at Café

May 2nd, 2010
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American Smooth Jazz Awards!
HUGE news … yours truly has garnered consideration as smooth jazz internet broadcaster of the year. We've received a few nods from the Canadian Awards these past few seasons and now we're blown away to mention that we're part of the American Awards as well! So if you enjoy the style of the hippest show on radio here's how you can show a little luv. Just log on at the ASJA site to vote for all your favourites!

This Week at
… in the showcase spotlight is Steve Oliver with his latest entitled Global Kiss. Then in hour 2 we're kickin it ole skool on the Back Trax segment. Featured on this instalment is a classic track by Herbie Hancock from 1974; guitarist Rohn Lawrence and flautist Lenny Mac Dowell are both on the show; there's a tune from royal harpist Catrin Finch, plus we have a great selection by Andy Snitzer from his '94 debut. Then later in that same hour we're balancing the tried and true with the fresh and new … there's music by Alan Hewitt, Peter White, and Jaared; also on the show are Tony Vattimo, Cindy Bradley and Marty Q. But right off the line Dan Carlin helps us pop the cork for an always effervescent Café Jazz!
In This Issue:

Global Kiss - Steve Oliver

Spend A Little Time - Rohn Lawrence
Garuda - Mac Dowell & Spendel
Butterfly - Herbie Hancock
James - Catrin Finch
Ties That Bind - Andy Snitzer

AFTER HOURS : East West Connection
PLAYLIST: Playlist for Ed#569

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Showcase CD
Global Kiss - Steve Oliver:

One of the most dynamic players in the game is back with his first studio effort in about four years. Since being named the '99 Debut Artist of the Year, Steve Oliver has averaged somewhere around 200 live appearances annually. His 2008 One Night Live captured the power and passion of Steve in a live gig while his 2006 seasonal release entitled Snowfall showed yet another side to this multi-dimensional performer. Following tours thru Spain, Germany, and London England, Oliver was genuinely inspired by the different cultures in Europe and decided to pursue a global theme for his newest release. While incorporating influences from R&B and other elements that have become hallmarks of his style, Oliver's focus grew to include percussive world rhythms. Aided by Tom Schuman & Bonny B (both from Spyro Gyra), as well as by Marion Meadows, Darren Rahn, Nate Harasim, and Alan Hewitt, Global Kiss is now his 7th and latest. The number seven proves lucky indeed for all of Steve's fortunate fans now royally treated to this world-wide musical embrace and so it with some alacrity that we spotlight Steve Oliver and that cd - in so doing we're pitching a sequence of three tasty tracks!

Steve Oliver - Global Kiss
Steve Oliver on the keys
Steve Oliver - '07 DVD Shoot!
Leading in we have True Vision with Bob Baldwin and Marion Meadows guesting. One of Steve's most tender ballads opens hour 2 - it's called Long Road and features Nate Harasim and Will Donato. While in the end, it's Global Kiss the title track - the Middle Eastern melody is highlighted by Humberto Vela armed with a wide array of percussive weaponry including dumbek, tabla, and jimba, while all the keyboard sounds are triggered by Steve himself from his guitar! With an endearing album so broad in its scope that it had to be called Global Kiss, Steve Oliver rightly shows he's at the cutting edge of today's scene! Steve Oliver Then & Now Spotlight Ed #424 - November 26th, 2006

CD: Global Kiss (2010)
Label: SOM Entertainment

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Back Trax: Part One
Rohn Lawrence - See Ya Around
Spend A Little Time - Rohn Lawrence:
New Haven Connecticut native Rohn Lawrence has been playing guitar in one form or another since he was about two-a-half. Influenced by the likes of Wes Montgomery, Charlie Christian and John Tropea, early on Lawrence played with many of the local funk bands such as The Lift, which included saxophonist Marion Meadows. Developing into a first call musician, he moved on to high profile gigs with Najee and others before debuting in 1994. With a pair of solo releases to his credit Lawrence appeared poised for the spotlight but for the most part he's enjoyed a great career as a sideman playing with many of the best in the genre. On this occasion, we return to his '98 sophomore cd for the smooth but punchy groove of a tune called Spend A Little Time!

CD: See Ya Around (1998)
Label: Jazzateria
Lenny Mac Dowell and Cristoph Spendel Project - Autumn Breath
Garuda - Lenny Mac Dowell & Cristoph Spendel Project:
His real name is Friedemann Leinert and he trained classically before his involvement in the progressive German scene of the 70s. In the 80s he set out on his own and adopted the moniker Lenny Mac Dowell for his 84 debut. Subsequently Mac Dowell focused his attention to launching Blue Flame Records and for the most part spent his time producing, arranging, and playing for other artists. There was an occasional issue here and there, including Autumn Breath, wherein Mac Dowell collaborated with Christoph Spendel, the noted keyboardist who for a time in the 90s, played with Special EFX. From that blend of new age and other influences, we've selected a super tune entitled Garuda and named for a large mythical bird that appears in Buddhist mythology!

CD: Autumn Breath (1989)
Label: Blue Flame

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Back Trax: Part Two
Herbie Hancock - Thrust
Butterfly - Herbie Hancock:
Herbie Hancock took up piano at the age of seven and by 11 he was soloing with the Chicago Symphony. After attending Grinnell College, Donald Byrd invited him to join his group and shortly after, Hancock debuted as a lead man. Nonetheless, a couple of years later, in 1963, he joined Miles Davis for a 5-year stint; then as an alumnus of the Davis school of jazz, he formed his own band. In due course, that ensemble evolved into one of the most exciting avant-garde units of the day. From one in a series of landmark albums, the '74 Thrust release, we selected the tune Butterfly … and as one reviewer, Richard S. Ginell, put it, the track is "a match for any tune he's written before or since, with shimmering synth textures and Bennie Maupin soaring on soprano"!

LP: Thrust (1974)
Label: Columbia
Catrin Finch - Crossing The Stone
James - Catrin Finch:
Catrin Finch began to master the harp at the age of 6 in her native Wales - by the time she was 11, she had played the World Harp Congress in Paris as well as performing at a BBC concert at Royal Albert Hall as principal harpist for the National Youth Orchestra. Following studies at the Purcell School, she went on to win a variety of awards and honors. Appointed the harpist to HRH the Prince of Wales, Ms Finch had several releases in the classical realm before the issue of her '94 Crossing the Stone cd, wherein she covered a variety of styles. From that effort, we have Catrin's plucky rendering of the Pat Metheny composition entitled James!

CD: Crossing The Stone (2003)
Label: Sony Music
Andy Snitzer - Ties That Bind
Ties That Bind - Andy Snitzer :
Philadelphia native Andy Snitzer was studying at the University of Miami, when he was discovered by Bob James - he went on to tour and record with the renowned keyboardist all while earning an MBA. After landing a position with the JP Morgan Investment firm, Snitzer also emerged as a sought after sessionist before debuting with Ties That Bind in 1994. After scoring a chart-topping hit with You've Changed, Snitzer fully moving to a career in music - he toured in support of the Rolling Stones and recorded with artists from Bette Midler to Aretha Franklin. Meantime, he's continued as front man with a half-dozen efforts to his credit. However, on this occasion we're returning to Snitzer's debut where, aided by the likes of Bob James and Harvey Mason, we've selected the activated dynamism of the title track!

CD: Ties That Bind (1994)
Label: Warner Bros.

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After Hours ~ Exclusive to our Site and Select Affiliates :
East West Connection: … it's the first of a 4-part mini series, wherein we use our direction-finder to musically explore the 4 points of the compass. Yes indeed, be it north, south, east or west - if a group or selection has some connection to one of these, you're likely to find it as part of these editions - on this occasion the operative concept is East West Connection and that's named after the band out of the UK. Selections will include East River Drive and Westchester Lady by artists such as Kyle Eastwood and the band Westbound. So as we set course for these diametrically opposed headings, we've used our GPS to choose a dozen such tracks!

First up we have Steve Oliver with West End from his debut. East Bay is from Boney James. Theo Bishop gives us Westside followed by Eastside from Four80East! Russ Freeman takes us for a cruise along East River Drive at the start of set #2; Denver's Dotsero treat us to Westchester Lady; East Coast is by Gabriel, while Surgical Spirit is from East West Connection - the very band for which we named this edition! In the third and closing set there's 101 Eastbound by Fourplay; Way Out West is from Jeff Kashiwa; the group Westbound provide the tune Ivan; while in the end it's a track called Now and that's by Kyle Eastwood … hope you enjoy the feature while we have a little fun doing musical "1-80s" all along the way! Playlist for Ed#569

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