October 15, 2004

Ronny Jordan Calls On George Benson's Son For New CD

Gutarist Ronny Jordan's new CD will be released on Nov. 2.

RonnyJordan.jpgGuitarist and New York City resident Ronny Jordan has finished his seventh solo album, which heís calling After 8. It will be released on Nov. 2 by the N-Coded label, which also released Jordanís At Last from 2003, which featured the smooth jazz hit of the same name.

Jordanís new album, which features his longtime band and which he produced, strives for a cohesive live sound. The all-instrumental project features 10 songs, with seven originals and three covers. He wrote five of the songs himself, and co-wrote the title song with Rob Benson, the son of legendary guitarist George Benson. Another song, "Bahia Magic," was written by keyboardist Dario Boente, an Argentinean who now lives in New York City. The cover songs include "Caught Up," which is based on the song from R&B star Usher's multi-million selling album Confessions.

"I Remember You" is the Johnny Mercer jazz classic song which Jordan puts his own spin on, and "Lighthouse" was originally performed by the late reggae star Peter Tosh. Ronny describes After 8 as featuring elements of smooth jazz and acid jazz, with some hip-hop and R&B influences.

"You'll hear snippets of all of my major guitar influences, from Wes Montgomery to George Benson to Kenny Burrell and Grant Green," Jordan says. "There's even a little Jimi Hendrix thrown in, too. But there's also some of me in there as well. As soon as you hear the melodic playing, you can tell it's me right away."

On the CD, Jordan says he tried not to overdo or rely too much on playing octaves - a technique that is closely associated with the late smooth-jazz guitar pioneer Montgomery.

"That style is copied by virtually every smooth jazz guitarist you hear on the radio," Jordan says. "For me right now, it's overkill. On After 8, I just wanted to take a less-is-more approach in regards to playing the octaves and not entirely depend on them to carry a melody. I'm constantly trying to forge my own sound and style. Bottom line, there'll never be another Wes or George."

Posted by Brian Soergel at October 15, 2004 6:40 AM