May 9, 2007

Babysoul is born: Jackiem Joyner’s debut CD finally emerges

Dynamic young R&B-jazz saxophonist’s single breaking at radio, album receives accolades as the artist prepares to take the stage
It’s rare for a musician still in their mid-20s to possess the depth of talent, maturity and vision that saxophonist-flutist-songwriter-producer Jackiem Joyner has.  The buzz that began gestating late last year produced the birth of Babysoul, Joyner’s debut album that was released today in record stores nationally by the ARTizen Music Group.  Joyner’s original R&B, soul and contemporary jazz songbook heralds the arrival of a true artist and serves as a harbinger that the future of instrumental music is poised for reinvigoration and re-imagination in the astute hands of the next generation. 
Babysoul grooves seductively from beginning to end.  Although the sax is Joyner’s primary instrument, he croons equally as passionately through his flute.  He explored unique ways to engage the two disparate voices in harmonious and complementary discourses on five of the collection’s eleven tracks.  In fact, Joyner, who produced the album and wrote ten songs for the disc, played most of the instruments on the record.  Rick Braun, the album’s executive producer, contributed trumpet and flugelhorn and Peter White issued gorgeous acoustic guitar riffs on the first radio single, “Stay With Me Tonight.”  Joyner beautifully covered the sexy “Say Yes,” originally recorded by Floetry.

Breaking a new artist takes time, patience, commitment, creativity and a comprehensive approach that embraces technology.  That’s the formula ARTizen has deployed to introduce Joyner.  Top label executives began touting Joyner and his music to prominent industry tastemakers, radio programmers and members of the media late last year.  Joyner took the stage for cameo appearances at concerts headlined by label principals and smooth jazz icons Rick Braun and Richard Elliot.  In addition to the usual radio blitz to support a single, ARTizen teamed with the network of terrestrial and online radio stations to add muscle to their attack.  Viral emails, banners on the site, and interactive links with media player, information about Joyner and purchasing links have helped propel “Stay With Me Tonight” into the Top 15 and it’s still rising.  Joyner was invited to perform at radio-sponsored concerts in San Diego by KIFM (May 26), in Reno by KJZS (June 20), and for the JazzTrax Big Bear Festival (June 23).  Additionally he’s got shows booked in Riverside, California (August 4) and the Catalina Jazz Festival (October 13 & 20).  More dates are being added for the summer and fall.
The media is watching both Joyner and taking note of the label’s efforts.  All Music Guide stated that ARTizen in “…2007 got behind the very funky and contemporary, sometimes hip and often retro but always super soulful Jackiem Joyner.  Joyner came to the airwaves after amassing a great résumé for his mid-twenty-something age: playing with Marcus Johnson, Bobby Lyle and Jaared, co-headlining a 2004 (tour) with Ronnie Laws and Angela Bofill, and opening gigs for everyone from India.Arie to Boney James.”  Jazz Review declared, “Debuting with Babysoul is a watershed moment in Jackiem Joyner’s life as he transitions from sideman, opener and back-up player to a full fledged star in his own right…After years of playing with the big guys, Jackiem Joyner has learned what he’s about in the music world, incorporating the best in his own music.  Young, yet multi-talented, Joyner has a long and bright career in front of him.  Babysoul has all the ingredients a true professional provides in a hit album.”  Baltimore Times observed “His style shows his age, for though it is of a quality level of any sax player who has been at the top of the charts for years, you can tell his youthful influences…”  Smooth Jazz Therapy concluded “Babysoul is an extremely accomplished collection and signals an association between Joyner and ARTizen that could well be a partnership made in heaven.  With the nurturing qualities of the label gelling with the obvious talent and sizzling potential of the artist, the name of Jackiem Joyner is bound to be around for a long time to come.”
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Posted by Peter Böhi at May 9, 2007 6:46 AM