Jazz fusion keyboardist Patrick Bradley taps a luminous cast for the spiritually-inspired Under the Sun
Talk about mixed emotions. That’s what jazz fusion artist Patrick Bradley will experience April 26th, when he celebrates his birthday by releasing his second album, Under the Sun. April 26th also marks the anniversary of his father’s passing. Bradley’s mother passed away eleven months to the day after his father. It was one heck of a year. But instead of sorrow, the keyboardist-songwriter turned to his faith when composing or co-writing eleven songs of hope, adventure and spiritual surrender for a record produced by seminal fusion keyboardist Jeff Lorber.
In addition to Bradley’s and Lorber’s high-level, tag team keyboard artistry, the musicianship on Under the Sun is equally stellar, thanks to the masterful performances of saxmen Dave Koz and Eric Marienthal, flugelhorn and trumpeter Rick Braun, guitarists Dwight Sills and Michael Thompson, bassists Alex Al and Nate Phillips, drummers Tony Moore and Dave Weckl, horn section work from David Mann, and the sultry voice of Irene B.
With the genesis of the collection coming from reading Ecclesiastes, Bradley harnessed a variety of influences and inspirations for Under the Sun, on which he played piano, keyboards, organ and Moog synthesizers. Bradley refers to the deep-pocketed “Straight Path,” the first track to be serviced to radio stations, as his “life verse” as it is about trusting the Lord for guidance. A lilting and joyous celebration of love with a cascading piano hook, “Into the Sunset” was written for his wife, Lisa. Koz and Irene B. add seductive elements to the R&B ballad “Just Let Go.” Bradley is a passionate road cyclist and he offers a taste of the adrenaline rush experienced while descending in a pack on “Slipstream,” which includes a lead-out from Braun’s horns. The unpredictability of life is the focus of “Time and Chance,” which delivers the message to live life to the fullest while being unafraid of taking chances. “Crows on the Lawn” swings. The poignant “Tears from the Sky” was written after his father’s passing and it’s an expansive, emotional piece both mournful and celebratory. “Rush Street” and the majestic “The Empress of Dalmatia” explode into aggressive progressive rock-jazz fusion jams ignited by Sills’ incendiary guitar pyrotechnics.
As for the album title, Bradley said, “The idea behind this record is to enjoy life and celebrate all it offers during the brief time we have under the sun. No matter what life dishes up, we should keep our dreams alive and pursue our passion, hopes and aspirations. The last few years have been challenging for all of us as we find ourselves in times of change and uncertainty. Seasons of change hit home for me personally when my parents passed away. I found myself in a period of reflection. These songs were written in times of joy, sorrow and triumph, yet with an eye on eternity. Life is speeding by. My hope is that we all will take the time to prioritize and tend to the important things and important people and relationships, and not just chase the mad pursuits of this life.”
A self-taught musician who started playing piano at age eight, Bradley’s musical endeavors have spanned jazz fusion, smooth jazz, gospel, rock, progressive rock, and classical. The Southern California native debuted in 2007 with Come Rain or Shine, an international seller that spawned the title track single, which peaked at #26 on the radio chart. Bradley is assembling a band to perform music from Under the Sun live in support of the album release. Outside of music, Bradley serves as a regional president of the Whole Foods Market southern pacific region. Further information is available at www.patrickbradley.net.