August 20, 2005

Modern Times call for modern measures for guitarist Marc Antoine

Single receives the remix treatment while the artist works the road extensively

With today’s release of the Modern Times album, guitarist Marc Antoine is prepared to take modern jazz to the next level.  “There comes a time in the life of an artist when you feel in a certain space and you just have to do it.  No thinking, just do it.  This is that time for me,” said the Rendezvous Entertainment recording artist about his seventh solo album, which he produced with dance music producer-club DJ David Ferraro in his home studio in Madrid, Spain.  Although Antoine has created a distinctive musical identity that has earned him four number one singles, he’s boldly taking his music in progressive new directions on this new collection.

If the advancement of an art form is based upon abolishing creative boundaries and blending the best elements of technology, culture, and philosophy, Modern Times will be viewed as a defining recording in the evolution of contemporary jazz.  Clubby dance grooves, funky hip hop beats, and pulsating electronic rhythms envelop or enhance the jazz, classical and blues influenced tracks.  Antoine collaborated with the writing of nine new compositions in addition to covering the samba romancer, “La Belle Dame Sans Regrets,” originally recorded by Sting and the first vocal number by Antoine, who croons sensually in French.  The Paris-born Antoine seasons his recordings with the cultures he encounters in his world travels.  Latin and African percussion, flamenco guitar riffs, European nuances, and devotional Indian chants lend color, texture, spirit and sophistication to the tracks.  Antoine has fluently expanded his dialect on the album.  Known for his flamenco acoustic guitar bravura, Antoine often communicates through a cool-toned electric jazz guitar.

The festive first single, “Bella Via,” energetically powered by shuffling Latin percussion and Antoine’s emotive acoustic guitar, was recently serviced to smooth jazz radio stations.  The track has just been remixed by Dave Rideau, a three-time Grammy nominee who is known for his work on recordings by Janet Jackson, Usher, Jennifer Lopez, Sting, Mary J. Blige, Kirk Franklin, and TLC.  It will soon be shipped to radio stations as well as to club DJs. 

Since mid-June, Antoine has constantly been on the road to lay the foundation for this different and pivotal album release.  He’s toured the concert trail in major U.S. cities with sax star Dave Koz, R&B vocalist Jeffrey Osborne and cutting-edge saxophonist Praful as part of the “Dave Koz & Friends” summer trek, which concludes this Sunday night (August 21) at the Hollywood Bowl in Hollywood, California.  Between tour dates, Antoine has made extensive visits to key commercial and non-commercial radio stations and retail outlets in other major markets.  At album listening events, Antoine has played acoustic solo mini-concerts that have left the audiences enraptured.  The efforts are already paying off as Modern Times went #1 on Amazon’s “Top Sellers” jazz list.

Antoine’s four number one singles are “Sunland,” “Mas Que Nada,” “Mediterraneo” and “Funky Picante.”  He has deployed his guitar finesse to recordings and concert performances by some of the most distinguished and diverse artists in music, including Sting, Cher, Queen Latifah, George Benson, Basia, Soul II Soul, Selena, Guru’s Jazzmatazz, Will Downing, Richard Elliot, Rick Braun, Peter White and David Benoit.  Koz is co-founder of Rendezvous Entertainment, for which Antoine records.

Posted by Peter Böhi at August 20, 2005 12:56 PM