Photos and Text by Ricky Richardson
Inglewood - I couldn't think of a better way to celebrate the end of summer than by going to Edward Vincent Jr. Park in Inglewood for "Jazz In The Park". Southbay Entertainment Group, along with the City of Inglewood, presented "Jazz In The Park", the 4th Annual Inglewood Jazz Festival on Saturday, September 2nd, 2006.
The event featured a stellar line-up of nationally renowned contemporary smooth jazz and R&B artist. Keyboardist Bob Baldwin opened the show with some original tunes from previous CD's. Mr. Baldwin was making a return engagement from last year's festival to the delight of the huge crowd of contemporary smooth jazz buffs.
The David Garfield Project and 3rd Force played a set of musical treats that contributed to the over all success of the festival.
DJ Jonathan Phillips played music in between sets that kept the crowd continually dancing.
The second half of the festival featured a trio of audience favorite performers.
Vocalist Regina Belle featured material from her latest CD Lazy Afternoon. She sang songs that brought back fond memories to me and the audience. Ms Belle performed "Living For The City" by the Isley Brothers, "Make It Like It Was", and "Ooh Boy!" "Fly Me To The Moon", "Show Me", "Write Me A Letter", "If I Could", "Give Me The Heat of Your Passion", "and concluded with "Baby Come To Me". Regina Belle received a roaring standing ovation.
Saxophonist Eric Darius has been heating up the contemporary smooth jazz community. He has two critically acclaimed CD's out Night On The Town and Just Getting Started. The titled of his last CD is letting the smooth jazz community know that he plans on being around for the long haul. A thunderous applause welcomed and greeted Eric before he played his first note. Mr. Darius continued to build up a repoir with the audience with his selection of songs that he performed. "Love TKO", "If I Can't Have You" by Alicia Keys, "Now's The Time", "Let's Stay Together" and finished his fantastic set with "Europa" by Gato Barbieri.
Keyboardist Bobby Lyle, guitarist Paul Jackson Jr., and Peabo Bryson were the GRAND FINALE to the 4th Annual Inglewood Jazz Festival "Jazz In The Park". They all performed superbly as individuals and collectively to solidify their standing in the music world.