December 9, 2004

Smooth Jazz Grammy Nominees

There's plenty of music that's heard on smooth jazz radio that earned Grammy nominations on Dec. 7. For a full list of 2004 Grammy Award nominees, check out www.grammy.com. The 47th Annual Grammy Awards will be presented Feb. 13, 2005, at the Staples Center in Los Angeles and broadcast on CBS.

The nominees for the 47th annual Grammy Awards were announced on Dec. 7 in Los Angeles, and while producer-turned-rapper Kayne West led all artists with 10 nominations and R&B singers Usher and Alicia Keys followed with eight, it was the late, great singer Ray Charles who was close behind with seven nods.

On Charles’ posthumous recording of duets called Genius Loves Company, the singer got plenty of help from artists whose songs are played on Smooth Jazz radio, including Norah Jones, Diana Krall, Michael McDonald, Natalie Cole, Van Morrison, Bonnie Raitt and James Taylor. Among the albums’ nominations were for the category of Album Of The Year and Record Of The Year for the song “Here We Go Again,” a duet with Jones. By the way, although Keys burns up the R&B charts, she also is a presence on the smooth jazz charts now with a song called “If I Ain’t Got You.”


Norah Jones Gets 5 Nominations
In addition to her Record Of The Year and Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals nominations with Charles for the duet “Here We Go Again,” Norah Jones picked up three other Grammy nominations for her sophomore album, Feels Like Home. She was nominated for Best Pop Vocal Album, Best Female Pop Performance for the song “Sunrise” and Best Country Collaboration With Vocals for “Creepin’ In,” a duet with Dolly Parton.


Smooth Jazz Nominees
Meanwhile, the Best Pop Instrumental Album category will pit Boney James and his Pure against Saxophonic by Dave Koz and Forever, For Always, For Luther, a tribute album to Luther Vandross produced by Bud Harner and Rex Rideout. “We're excited and grateful to have received a Grammy nomination," says Rideout. "We want to thank all of the great artists who took part in this project" adds Harner "We’re thrilled to get this nomination, and we think it’s a great statement for smooth jazz, too.”

George Benson was nominated for Best Pop Instrumental Performance for his Vandross instrumental cover of “Take You Out,” which is on his Irreplaceable album and also on the Harner/Rideout tribute album. Also in that category, producer Jason Miles and his band Maximum Grooves got a nod for the song “Chasing Shadows,” with features Russ Freeman, Herb Alpert and others. It’s Miles’ second Grammy nomination.

Veteran band Fourplay earned a nomination for Best Contemporary Jazz Album for Journey. For Best Jazz Vocal Album, Al Jarreau is nominated for Accentuate the Positive and is joined by Jamie Cullum’s Twentysomething and Queen Latifah’s The Dana Owens Album. Seal got a nod for Best Male Pop Performance for the smooth jazz single “Love’s Devine.”

Meanwhile, vocalist Diana Krall did not receive a Grammy nomination this year, but she is included on the soundtrack to the movie De-Lovely, which earned a nomination for Best Soundtrack Album. Krall’s producer, Tommy LiPuma, however, earned a nomination for Producer Of The Year for The Girl In The Other Room and also for Jarreau’s Accentuate The Positive. In addition, veteran sound engineer Al Schmitt picked up a nomination for Krall’s album, one of five he earned.


Dave Koz Nominated Again
Dave Koz has never won a Grammy Award. But he has received four nominations in the last four years. In 2001, Koz and his friends picked up a nod in the Best Pop Instrumental Album category for A Smooth Jazz Christmas. In 2002, Koz and his brother, Jeff Koz, were nominated in the Best Pop Instrumental Performance for their lullaby rendition of the Beatles classic, "Blackbird." Last year, Koz picked up the nod in the Best Pop Instrumental Performance category for his #1 hit "Honey-Dipped" from the album Saxophonic. This year, he is once again up for Best Pop Instrumental Album for Saxophonic, which was released on Oct. 7, 2003.

Koz will be competing against his good friend and fellow saxophonist Boney James and his Pure album. In addition, Koz will be competing against two more friends, producers Harner and Rideout, who produced Forever, For Always, For Luther. Ironically, that album features Koz and keyboardist Brian Culbertson on the song “If Only For One Night.” The Luther tribute album also features a song by fellow nominee James called “Wait For Love.” Also, Koz appears on Rod Stewart’s Stardust … The Great American Songbook, Vol. III, which earned a nomination for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album.


Boney James Enjoying Nomination
Boney James heard about his Grammy nomination from his Southern California home and soon was accepting congratulatory phone calls from friends and family members. His ninth album, Pure, was nominated for Best Pop Instrumental Album. The album, the first which James has produced exclusively, entered the Billboard 200 charts at No. 66 over the summer, selling 17,000 copies in its first week and becoming the best debut in his career.

James' previous album, 2001’s Ride, received a Grammy nomination in the Best Instrumental Album category. Although nominated in the instrumental category, Pure has several vocal tracks, including the R&B single “Better With Time” with vocalist Bilal. The first single from Pure, a song called “Here She Comes,” went all the way to No. 1 on the smooth jazz charts. The new single, “Stone Groove,” features legendary pianist Joe Sample.

“You know, it’s a thrill," James says. "This actually means a little bit more for me because this record is so personal to me since I produced it myself and it just really in a way feels almost like my first record. To have it recognized by the Recording Academy like this is a real exciting moment for me.”


Anita Baker Nominated Once Again
Eight-time Grammy winner Anita Baker has a chance to add two more Grammys to her collection as she was nominated for Best R&B Album for My Everything and Best Traditional R&B Performance for her Smooth Jazz single “You’re My Everything.” In the Vocal Performance category, Anita will be competing against Patti LaBelle and her smooth jazz single “New Day” from her Timeless Journey album. For Best Album, Baker will go against Alicia Keys, Prince, Jill Scott and Al Green.

It was on Sept. 7, 2004, that the album My Everything was released on the Blue Note label, becoming Baker’s first album in 10 years. The album debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard 200, sold more than 131,000 copies in its first week and has now moved more than 427,000 copies in the United States. In the past, Baker has picked up Grammys for her albums Rapture, Giving You The Best That I’ve Got and Compositions. Songs that have won Grammys are “Sweet Love,” “Ain’t No Need To Worry,” “Giving You The Best That I’ve Got” and “I Apologize.”

In addition to hearing her name announced by blues singer and presenter Joss Stone , Baker also presented the nominees for the Best Pop Vocal and Record Of The Year categories in the ceremony aired live on E! Entertainment Television.


47th Grammy Awards Nominations (Selected - complete list at www.grammy.com)

Best Pop Instrumental Album: Pure, Boney James; Saxophonic, Dave Koz; Forever, For Always, For Luther, Bud Harner and Rex Rideout, producers

Best Pop Instrumental Performance: “Take You Out,” George Benson; “Chasing Shadows,” Maximum Grooves (with Jason Miles, Herb Alpert, Russ Freeman, James Genus, Gene Lake)

Best Contemporary Jazz Album: Journey, Fourplay

Best Jazz Vocal Album: Accentuate The Positive, Al Jarreau; Twentysomething, Jamie Cullum; The Dana Owens Album, Queen Latifah

Best R&B Album: My Everything, Anita Baker

Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance: “You’re My Everything,” Anita Baker; “New Day,” Patti LaBelle

Best Female Pop Performance: Norah Jones, “Sunrise”

Record Of The Year: Ray Charles and Norah Jones, “Here We Go Again”

Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals: Ray Charles and Norah Jones, “Here We Go Again”

Best Pop Vocal Album: Feels Like Home, Norah Jones; Genius Loves Company, Ray Charles and various artists

Best Country Collaboration With Vocals: “Creepin’ In,” Norah Jones and Dolly Parton

Album Of The Year: Ray Charles, Genius Loves Company

Song Of The Year and Best Female Vocal R&B Performance: Alicia Keys, “If I Ain’t Got You”

Best Male Pop Performance: Seal, “Love’s Devine”

Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album: Stardust … The Great American Songbook, Vol. III, Rod Stewart (featuring Dave Koz)

Best Male R&B Vocal Performance: “What We Do Here,” Brian McKnight

Best Jazz Instrumental Solo: “Speak Like A Child,” Herbie Hancock (from the solo album All My Heart by Harvey Mason of Fourplay)

Best Song Written For A Motion Picture, Television Or Other Visual Media: “You Will Be My Ain True Love” from Cold Mountain, written by Sting, sung by Alison Krauss

Best Compilation Soundtrack Album For A Motion Picture, Television Or Other Visual Media: De-Lovely, with vocals by Mick Hucknall of Simply Red, Diana Krall, Natalie Cole, others

Producer Of The Year: Tommy LiPuma, Accentuate The Positive by Al Jarreau; The Girl In The Other Room by Diana Krall

Posted by Brian Soergel at December 9, 2004 6:08 PM