February 28, 2009

What We're Listening To ** February

D E N I S * P O O L E

‘On For You’ by up and coming vocalist Douye from her debut album Journey. This outrageously infectious cut glides atop a deliciously languid mid tempo beat and is blessed by the playing of guitarist Jeff Prescetto who also lends a hand on background vocals.

‘Hold On Tight’ by Boney James from his brand new CD Send One Your Love. Moody and dappled with a subtle string arrangement this delicious track is contemporary jazz how it’s meant to be.

‘Sun Diego’ by guitarist Patrick Yandall from his soon to be released album A New Day. With sunshine dripping from every note, and a horn infused feel good factor that is off the scale, the smooth playing of this San Diego resident sums up the sumptuous vibe that is synonymous with the sun soaked locality he calls home.

‘Lucy The Cat’ by Paul Jackson Jr from his upcoming new release Lay It Back. Co-produced by Jackson and the always excellent Jeff Lorber, this stunning mid tempo cut is a standout in an album jam packed full with them.

Taken from the brand new DVD David Sanborn Live at Montreux 1984, the nostalgia filled ‘Hideaway’ is a startling reminder of the impact the legendary Sanborn has had on contemporary jazz over the past thirty years.


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

Yuji Ohno & Friends, Lupin The Third: Jazz  Bossa & Fusion (Vap) (2002)

Kenny Wright & Fresh Groove, Bottle of Wine (Knee-Deep Records) (1998)

Passport, Earthborn (Wounded Bird Records) (2001)

Passport, Man in the Mirror (Wounded Bird Records) (2001)

Club 1600 and Rex Rideout, Ridin' High (Encoded Music)  (2002)


R O N A L D * J A C K S O N

Denny Jiosa, Dreams Like This (Sonic Canvas Records):  This refined smooth jazz guitarist with a real “touch” puts forward a sterling effort with this stirring dose of smooth jazz, with a touch of straight-ahead thrown in for good measure.

Nate Harasim, Love's Taken Over (NuGroove Music): Harasim's fluid, buoyant style ebbs and flows as the mood calls for it, bouncing where that honky tonk-like bounce is the order of the moment, and waxing soft and melodic at other points in this fine production.

Eldredge Jackson, Listening Pleasure (JEA Records):  Here’s a young saxophonist who embraces, caresses, massages, and gets the most from each and every passionate note that he belts out, combining flawless scale work and that soulful touch that just cannot be taught to mold what surely deserves to be among the top-tier productions in smooth jazz today. 

Mars Lasar, At the End of the Day (Sound Manipulations): I hear an interesting blend of Hardcastle and Paolo Rustichelli styles that make for a truly enriching listening experience, complete with rousing melodies. Look for my full review of this artist and album shortly!

David Boswell, I Like That (My Quiet Moon Records): A hot blend of serious fusion with a style combining the likes of  Mike Stern, The Yellowjackets, and Pat Metheny. Look for the full review of this one shortly, as well.


P E T E R * B O E H I

Masato Honda - Across The Groove (2008)
Japanese saxophonist Masato Honda is an original member of the fusion supergroup T-Square, on this release from 2008 he teams up with most of Fourplay (Bob James, Nathan East and Harvey Mason) plus guitarist Mike Miller to deliver a great contemporary jazz album on the highest level. Stunning!

Boney James - Send One Your Love (2009)
Another incredibly smooth and sensual album by saxophonist Boney James hitting all the right buttons with its sultry playing and laidback grooves. I just can't get enough of this artist! Smooth jazz bliss!

Jeff Kashiwa - Back In The Day (2009)
Brand new release by saxophonist Jeff Kashiwa - who won a large fan base as member of the Rippingtons and the Sax Pack - delivers an album full of catchy tracks, superior playing and contemporary grooves. It doesn't get much better than this!

Cecil Ramirez - Talk To The Hand (2008)
Keyboardist Cecil Ramirez is a smooth jazz pianist located in California, this is an outstanding CD full of memorable tracks and great playing, very much in the vein of Brian Culbertson, so you should definitely check him out!

Masaru Imada - Tropical Sunset (1981)
As usual I would like to point out a great LP from the past. Japanese pianist Masaru Imada deliviered this fusion gem in 1981, featuring players like the Breckers Brothers, Grover Washington Jr., Steve Khan and others. Well worth to go back to!

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

Brian Tarquin, Brian Tarquin Collection (NuGoove)

Various Artists, Hot Buttered Jazz: Celebrating the Music of Isaac Hayes (Shanachie)

Patrick Yandall, A New Day (Patrick Yandall)

Vail Johnson, Come Together (Swede Song)

Jeff Kashiwa, Back in the Day (Shanachie)

Posted by Peter Böhi at February 28, 2009 1:13 PM