Guitarist Norman Brown, whose "Let�s Take A Ride� is the No. 1 Smooth Jazz song in the country, has been named the new host of the 2008 All-Star Smooth Cruise, formerly the All-Star Smooth Jazz Cruise. Until recently, keyboardist Brian Culbertson was set to host the cruise, which will depart from San Diego in January, for the second year in a row. Trumpeter Rick Braun hosted the inaugural year.
The change is due to new management, Haven Entertainment, which bought the rights to the cruise from AAI Events. As part of the change, Haven Entertainment is going through the process of re-selecting artists to perform. As of now, in addition to Brown, confirmed performers include jam-show host Nick Colionne, Marion Meadows, Paul Taylor, Chieli Minucci and Boney James. A full list of performers is expected to be announced shortly on the cruise website at allstarcruise.com.
Because of the changes, those who have already made deposits will be able to get a full refund if they wish, and Haven Entertainment will be sending out an e-mail to those people soon.