Grady Nichols signs with Compendia Records

Rising star in the contemporary jazz format to release Sophistication on July 27

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (May 25, 2004) - Jazz saxophonist Grady Nichols has signed with Compendia Music Group, and will release his album Sophistication on the Compendia Records label. Michael Olsen, president of Compendia Music Group, made the announcement today.

GradyNichols.jpgScheduled for release on July 27, Sophistication - produced by respected jazz musician Jeff Lorber - already has one track, "Allright," climbing R&R's Smooth (contemporary) Jazz charts and in the top 20 on Smoothjazz.com's listing.

"This project was put together over a long period and during two major life-changing events - getting married and having a child," said Nichols. "There is a culmination of many different emotions throughout and I hope people will feel that when they hear the music. There is a flow to this record as it weaves from the funky to the seductive. It's my best studio project to date."

Ric Pepin, VP/GM of Compendia Music Group, said, "We were knocked out by Grady's music, obviously - Sophistication is an incredible album. However, as a label we were also impressed by this artist's work ethic and determination. What Grady has achieved to date he has done on his own - assembling his own promotion and marketing team, gradually building a following in the jazz world, putting out his own albums. Compendia knows that an artist that invests in his own career is an artist worth investing in as a label."

"We first tested the waters of the contemporary jazz format with some tracks from the Joan Osborne How Sweet It Is album, and we were delighted with how programmers embraced her - in fact, Joan became the most played female vocalist in that format in 2003," continued Pepin. "Today, in addition to Grady, we also have Compendia Records artist Pete Belasco moving up the contemporary jazz charts. Radio programmers see that we've made a real commitment to this format; we'll continue to support the contemporary jazz format with quality artists and music."

Grady Nichol's first two CDs, Between You and Me (1996) and Mysterious Intentions (1997) netted considerable airplay on contemporary jazz and adult contemporary radio stations across the country - an impressive accomplishment for an independent artist. Grady's 2001 release, In the Fullness of Time, featured Bill Champlin, keyboardist / vocalist of the group Chicago, alongside a 50 voice choir. He has appeared on national television on BET On Jazz's Jazz Scene and for twenty-six weeks on BET's Sunday Night Live. As part of his ongoing effort to blend music and charity, Grady initiated and hosts "Grady Nichols Presents . . . ," a star-studded event in Tulsa featuring acts from all genres of music. The 2000 show featured the Beach Boys, drew 7500 people, and raised over $50,000 for the Tulsa Area United Way.

Compendia Music Group is an independent record company whose labels include Compendia Records, Light Records and Intersound Music. These labels, each with a separate staff and musical focus, produce and distribute a wide variety of music, including rock, contemporary jazz, pop, gospel, lifestyle/inspirational, country, Christian and classical. For more information, please visit www.compendiamusic.com.