February 28, 2007

What We're Listening To * February

D E N I S * P O O L E

'Because Of Love' by Brian Simpson - not from his 2005 smash It's All Good or from his new one due out in early summer but from the sensational Closer Still that was released as far back as 1995.

'More Or Les Paul' by Paul Brown from his CD White Sand that was released on January 27. Featuring Euge Groove this one is a future radio single and no mistake.

'Dreamin' by Nils from his brand new CD Ready To Play. A lovely track from the most radio friendly artist on the scene.

‘En Mis Suenos’ by the Urban Jazz Coalition from their CD Down To Get Up. This Ohio based collective is a real treasure and the track shimmers with the mellowest most infectious hook that you will hear in a long time. This is Latin lusciousness of the highest order.

‘Cruisin’ by Tim Cunningham from the CD Manchester Road. Almost an instrumental form of deep soul it has a sumptuous groove and evocatively mellow playing that, in this month of Valentines romance, is sure to gain kudos when shared with the one you love.


J O N A T H A N * W I D R A N

Kyle Eastwood, Now (Candid Records/Rendezvous)

Walter Beasley, Ready For Love (Heads Up)

William Woods, The Hear and Now (Whaling City Sound)

Incognito, bees+things+flowers (Narada Jazz)

Gil Parris, Strength (215 Records)


B E V E R L Y * P A C K A R D

Chieli Minucci, Sweet Surrender, (Shanachie, 2007) A brand new one by this master composer/guitarist. Not entirely ‘smooth jazz,’ but rather contains tunes that trace the diverse musical career of Chieli Minucci as an individual artist and as member of Special EFX. A total delight.

Chuck Loeb, When I’m With You, (Shanachie, 2005)

Nick Colionne, Just Come On In, (Three Keys Music, 2003)

Rachel Z, Everlasting, (Tone Center, 2004)

Richard Smith, Soulidified (A440 Music Group, 2004)

B R I A N * S O E R G E L

Jeff Golub, Grand Central (Narada): Bluesy smooth jazz guitar sounds from an artist at the top of his game.

Jesse Lee Johnson, With a Latin Touch (Jesse Lee Johnson): Lounge-like guitar licks that are so nerdy they are cool. Go to http://cdbaby.com/cd/tshgojlj for samples.

Brian Bromberg, Upright Downright (Artistry): The bassist recruits some of the top names in smooth jazz for this funky, jazzy project.

Paul Brown, White Sand (Peak): On his third CD, the producer-turned-solo-artist just keeps getting better.

Lao Tizer, Diversify (YSE): Smooth and funky piano grooves.


P E T E R * B O E H I

Michael Stricklin - Michael Stricklin (1997)
Beautiful smooth jazz album with a lot of substance and variety by sax player Michael Stricklin. Quality all over, a real gem which should not be overlooked. Take it from me!

Nils - Ready To Play (2007)
After having been out of the spotlight for years Nils had a big success with his "Pacific Coast Highway" album from last year. Now he jumps on the opportunity and hits bulls eye again with this great collection of catchy smooth jazz songs featuring his cool guitar. SwissGroove radio virtually soaked it up from beginning to end. Thumbs up!

Mel Davis - Revealed (2005)
Hammond B3 player Mel Davis delivers a cool album full of groovy tracks covering songs like "Real Mother For Ya" and "Smooth Operator" which are totally awesome, while the second half of the CD is more straight ahead organ jazz in the old school. Check it out!

Chuck Loeb - Presence (2007)
This outstanding guitar player can do no wrong and this new release is another example of his superior musicianship. Picture perfect smooth jazz and even a great chill track "Llevame" (which has been added to the playlist of SmoothVibes right away) yield a top-notch package of aural bliss.

James Last - Seduction (1980)
A blast from the past finally released on CD. James Last is a German big band leader who has sold millions of records during his lengthy career and usually is ignored by jazz lovers. But this album was done in the US with the best of the best - Michael Brecker, David Sanborn, Lee Ritenour and others - resulting in a great mix of nice James Last compositions/arrangements and masterful playing. Worth to come back to!


J E F F * D A N I E L S

Chuck Loeb, Presence (Heads Up)

Al Jarreau, Glow (Reprise / Wea)

Gregg Karukas, Looking Up (Trippin 'n Rhythm)

Pat Metheny / Brad Mehldau, Metheny / Mehldau (Nonesuch)

Joyce Cooling, Revolving Door (Narada)

Posted by Beverly J. Packard at February 28, 2007 12:49 AM