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This Week at Café

June 20th, 2010
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This Week at the Café: The Quarterly Review: Q2 - 2010!
... the second in our 2010 series checks back on all the best tracks from the past 90 days. Included on this installment are David Benoit and Steve Cole as well as Jeff Lorber Fusion and The Jazzmasters. Also appearing are Gerald Albright, Special EFX, and Jaared. In addition we have Les Sabler, S-Tone Inc., The Soca Joe Band, Jeff Beck, and Tomazz plus there's Mizar out of Hungary and The James Colah Project. In the meantime, there's a 6-pack of featured selections. We start with Maurice Johnson and follow with The Eric Evans Project and Tim Bowman while hour 2 sees Andrea Razzauti, Alex Bugnon, and Jonathan Fritzén - all with selections that are new to the show!
In This Issue:

Not Lately - Maurice Johnson
Seaside - Eric Evans
Let It Shine - Tim Bowman
Once in Barcelona - Andrea Razzauti
Nouthra Dona ... - Alex Bugnon
Dance With Me - Jonathan Fritzén

ONE YEAR AGO:The QR for Q.2 2009 PLAYLIST: Playlist for Ed#576

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Highlights Hour One
Not Lately - Maurice Johnson:
Originally hailing from Milwaukee WI, early in his career Maurice Johnson relocated to Oklahoma City where in 1985 he formed the band After Five. The group enjoyed a 10-year stint. They shared the stage with the likes of George Benson and issued a cd in 1991 but eventually the project ran its course. All while new avenues were opening. As co-founder of D'Leco Acoustic Instruments, Johnson began building and marketing handcrafted guitars, while by 2003 he'd also authored three books that were nationally published. Additionally, Johnson developed Gigorama software a Windows based system for specifically musicians. Tonight is Johnson's debut under his own name and with hints of Benson and Wes Montgomery from it we've selected the hip stylings of Not Lately!

CD: Tonight (2010)
Label: Jazz Drops Records

Maurice Johnson - Tonight

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The Eric Evans Project - Waves of Grace
Seaside - The Eric Evans Project:
Encouraged by his music-loving parents to learn an instrument before junior high, and exposed to the records of Paul Horn and Herbie Mann, Eric Evans chose the flute. He began his professional career in San Diego early in senior school - he took part in several record sessions and toured with a couple of rock bands. Later turning to conveying inspirational themes in his playing, Evans has led musical worship in many churches and his two previous cds have generally reflected those concepts. Now as The Eric Evans Project, Waves of Grace is cd #3 in his catalogue. This album is a collaboration featuring a blend of pop and smooth jazz, and ably aided by the likes of Cecil Ramirez on keys and Steve Laury on guitar, from that effort we have the hypnotic groove of track that'll make you wanna move!

CD: Waves of Grace (2010)
Label: ElectricFlute Records
Tim Bowman - The Collection
Let It Shine - Tim Bowman:
After high school, Detroit native Tim Bowman worked a car assembly line, but when he was laid off, music became his primary focus. Through his sister, Bowman met Marvin Winans who asked Bowman to join his group - in all, he spent 6 years playing with the band that went on to become the biggest-selling gospel act of the 80s. Bowman left in 1987 to spend more time with his family and didn't really get back into music in a serious way for about 10 years! Releasing a well received debut in 1996, it was his 4th cd that catapulted Tim's career to a new level - Summer Groove proved one of the quintessential tracks for the heat of 2004. The 2008 issue of Tim's self-titled album saw the single Sweet Sundays enjoy similar success and now we have Let It Shine from Tim's forthcoming The Collection. From this soon-to-be issued best of, here's a tune sure to convey the spirit of the sunny season for many years to come! Tim Bowman Then & Now Spotlight on Ed #359 - April 17th, 2005

CD: The Collection (2010)
Label: Trippin 'n' Rhythm Records

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Highlights Hour Two
Andrea Razzauti - Painting the Music
Once in Barcelona - Andrea Razzauti:
Born in Italy but now based in Hawaii, Andrea Razzauti follows his twin passions in music and painting. His father gave him his first guitar when he was 9 and by the time he reached his teens, Razzauti was opening for many well known bands and gaining notoriety all across Europe for the variety of styles that he played. In the 80s, Razzauti recognized the affinity between jazz and classical guitar and inspired by the likes of Villalobos, Wes Montgomery and George Benson, he began to connect the two in his compositions. He released his debut in the 90s and now the duality of his artistic expression is encapsulated in his latest release in Painting the Music. Produced by Grammy-winner Paul Brown, the cd musically describes some of his European ventures - our stop for today being the musically picturesque Once in Barcelona!

CD: Painting the Music (2009)
Label: Blu Ara Enterprise
Alex Bugnon - Going Home
Nouthra Dona di Maortse - Alex Bugnon:
After nine albums and a best of, Alex Bugnon knew it was time to return to some of his jazz roots. Born in Montreux Switzerland, home of the world famous jazz festival, on Going Home Bugnon "boldly explores … his first love." After spending four months in 2009 listening to some of his heroes, Bugnon composed all of the songs "quickly in the heat of inspiration." Eight tracks were recorded in two days with a pair of talented old friends in Victor Bailey on bass and Poogie Bell on drums. Sensing the need for horns on the tracks, Bugnon added Vincent Henry on sax, Greg Boyer on trombone, and Barry Danielian on trumpet & flugelhorn. From that effort, the first release on his own Xela Productions (Alex spelled backwards); we present Bugnon's superb adaptation of Nothra Dona di Maortse, a traditional Swiss classical chorale that he discovered a few years back at the father's funeral. Alex Bugnon Then & Now Spotlight Feature Ed #410 - June 11th, 2006

CD: Going Home (2010)
Label: Xela Productions, Inc.
Jonathan Fritzén - Diamonds
Dance With Me - Jonathan Fritzén:
To quote noted journalist and ASJA nominated Denis Poole of Smooth Jazz Therapy, "The key attribute of any truly successful artist is the ability to consistently write music of the quality that can shape a career. This doesn't always come easy but in the case of writer, producer and keyboard player Jonathan Fritzén he really has hit the ground running." The 2008 Love Birds debut hinted at Fritzén's tremendous potential, which was realized to a great extent with VIP, the highly polished follow-up. Named our own Café Jazz #7 album for 2009, the project peaked at #2 and lingered on the charts for over year. Now, new for June 2010, and at a pace of roughly an album a year, comes Fritzén's 3rd issue in Diamonds. Teaming with a few guest performers, not the least of which is Darren Rahn who mixed the album, Fritzén delivers a project that yours truly, the swami of smooth, fully predicts will sky-rocket the talented young Swede to smooth stardom!

CD: Diamonds (2010)
Label: Nordic Night Records

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After Hours ~ Exclusive to our Site and Select Affiliates :
More of the Q2 Review: On this edition ... selections by Steve Oliver, Velez Brothers, and Larry Carlton &Tak Matsumoto. Also appearing are Professor RJ Ross and Freddy V while debut artists include Richard Bailey and Terje Lie; all as part of a 13 track set. And to get things underway we have something new from Jonathan Butler and his latest release! Playlist for Ed#576

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