Tuesday, December 27, 2005


Whether you're heading out or hanging in on the big night, your essential soundtrack on 12/31 will be the extended New Year's Eve edition of The Groove Boutique!

Radio stations that usually carry the two-hour version of the show will offer up a special four-hour mix. And groovers who tune in the Rafester on WQCD/CD101.9 in NYC will enjoy a SIX HOUR flow (8P-2A) of soul jazz, Latin jazz, nu jazz, acid jazz, chill, bossa nova, and uptempo smooth jazz!

If you live in a market that is not airing The Groove Boutique, find out the name of the smooth jazz radio station in your area, call 'em up, ask for the program director, and scream "GIVE ME THE GROOVE BOUTIQUE!")


The 7th annual Cape Town International Jazz Festival, which is now acknowledged as the biggest Jazz event on the African continent, will once again take place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) on Friday 31 March and Saturday 1 April 2006. Festival director, Rashid Lombard, and his organisation team, espAfrika (Pty) Ltd, are more than confident that the 2006 staging of this popular festival, that has become affectionately known as 'Africa's Grandest Gathering', will be as successful as the previous festivals and will again feature a world-class line-up of jazz and jazz related artists. This will be the third time that the Cape Town International Jazz Festival will be staged at its spacious and classy new home at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC). The 2006 festival will again feature a spectacular bill of 40 acts, split equally between the African and International contingents, performing in five different venues situated around the Convention Centre. There will also be the traditional free concert for the people of Cape Town prior to the festival on Thursday 30 March to be held on Greenmarket Square. With almost four months to go till the eagerly anticipated weekend musical party in March, espAfrika have already announced the first list of artists who will be appearing at the 2006 Jazz Festival.

Artists already confirmed include: Manu DiBango & Soul Makossa Gang, Chucho Valdés Quartet featuring Mayra Caridad Valdés,Tina Schouw and Friends, Charlie Hayden Quartet, Freddy Cole, Louie Vega and his Elements of Life LIVE featuring Blaze, Anane & Luisito Quintero, Nestor Torres, Terence Blanchard, Tribute to Ray Charles featuring Joe McBride, Gerald Veasley and Kenny Blake, Miriam Makeba (Grand Finale Tour), Sipho ‘Hotstix’ Mabuse, Relax, Omar Sosa Quartet featuring Pee Wee Ellis, RJ Benjamin, Mario Canonge Trio featuring Horacio El Negro Hernandez, Caiphus Semenya, Heads Up Superband, Unofficial Language featuring Paul Hanmer, Ian Herman and Pete Sklair.

Born in Douala, Cameroon, in 1933, Manu DiBango's talents range widely as saxophonist, pianist, marimba-player, composer and arranger. Love of jazz on the one hand and traditional African music on the other, prompted Manu to experiment by combining various different styles of music to create his own unique blend. With his inherent curiosity and sensitivity, Manu has always been interested in widely divergent and different styles of music. A cursory listen to his output bears this out; jazz, reggae, rap…all of these and more are in full effect.

The appearance of Miriam Makeba’s name on the bill will evoke both excitement and some sadness amongst her many fans. Now regarded as one of Africa’s greatest artists, “Mama Afrika” has recently been considering retiring from live performances after an international musical career spanning 50 glorious years. So her third appearance at the Festival is sure to be one of the most emotional performances of the weekend.

Apart from Miriam Makeba, the African contingent is looking as strong as ever. The distinguished South African musician, producer, musical director, composer and arranger, Caiphus Semenya, will be making a welcome appearance. There are many jazz fans who would like to honour Caiphus Semenya’s lifetime of work as a performer and arranger of African music, following his exile from SA in the ‘60’s with his wife Letta Mbulu, and fellow exiled musical compatriots Hugh Masekela, Jonas Gwangwa, Hotep Galeta, and Miriam Makeba amongst many others.

Internationally acclaimed jazz trumpeter, Terence Blanchard, will be paying his first visit to the festival in 2006. This Grammy-nominated musician has recorded a string of great albums like Let’s Get Lost, Wandering Moon and Flow for Sony and the prestigious Blue Note label, and has worked on film soundtracks for Spike Lee. A

Another big jazz name on the bill is that of pianist/vocalist Freddy Cole, whose music bears close resemblance to the sounds of his illustrious brother, the legendry Nat King Cole. Cole doesn't apologize for sounding like his brother, Nat "King" Cole. There are certain unmistakable similarities. He plays piano and sings and performs live with guitar and upright bass, just like Nat. Yet his voice is raspier, smokier, jazzier even. But he has emerged from the awesome shadow cast by his elder brother. In truth, his phrasing is far closer to that of Frank Sinatra or Billie Holiday than that of his brother and his timing swings a little more. His vocals - suave, elegant, formidable, and articulate - are among the most respected in jazz. Cole's career continues to ascend as he's moved into the front ranks of America's homegrown art form with a style and musical sophistication all his own. His most recent CD, This Love Of Mine, also on the High Note label, was released in mid-June 2005 to enthusiastic fans.

Among the African contingent of artists is the acclaimed band Unofficial Language featuring Paul Hanmer, Ian Herman and Pete Sklair. South African pianist Paul Hanmer, who has built a successful solo career beginning with his exceptional piano roots jazz exploration album called Trains To Taung, also performs with The Sheer All Stars.

RJ Benjamin is an emerging jazz artist who is currently getting loads of attention and airplay with his cover of the Oasis track Wonderwall off his recently released album Who I Am.

Tina Schouw is one of South Africa’s finest female jazz vocalists who first came to the attention of her many fans with the release of her unique debut album Bleed.

Sipho "Hotstix" Mabuse is a successful performer who first appeared in the African soul group, Harari, before launching his successful solo career and bursting onto the South African music scene with his massive mbanqanga pop hits of the late 1980s, Burn Out, and Jive Soweto.

Other exciting international names to watch out for include the Chucho Valdés Quartet featuring Mayra Caridad Valdés. Now a well-known name in World Music circles, Chucho Valdés has been dubbed “the ruling king of Latin jazz keyboard” and is a member of the famous Valdés Cuban musical family.

Latin Grammy award winner, Nestor Torres is a master flautist and composer who hails from Puerto Rico – his music has been described as being “like a rich sancocho, a stew of tropical, Caribbean flavors!”

Mario Canonge is a piano virtuoso from Martinique whose music has been described as Salsa Creole, which is an aural tour of Afro-Caribbean musical styles from zouk to bolero to jazz and salsa. His last album, Rhizome, featuring Roz Hergrove and Richard Bona, was successfully released in June 2004.

Louie Vega’s “Elements of Life” 12-piece project mixes fresh and organic house beats with Latin and African music, featuring vocalists Blaze, Anane and Luisito Quintero on percussion. Vega has found his personal turning point with Elements of Life, his first true solo artist album, set for a March release. The godfather of house music makes a commanding stand behind the stage-top turntables, with Latin bass-lines disco grooves. Masters at Work (MAW), which comprises Vega and partner Kenny “Dope” Gonzalez, was nominated for its remix of the Latin Project’s Lei Lo Lai, which reached No. 1 on Billboard’s dance chart last fall. It is only on rare and important occasions, that the Heads Up International recording artists,

Kenny Blake, Joe McBride and Gerald Veasley, come together for special performances as the Heads Up Super Band. But these three talented musicians will be performing at the festival, firstly as the Heads Up Super Band, and then they will also be performing their acclaimed 'Tribute To Ray Charles’ set.

Finally, the Cape Town International Jazz Festival 2006 welcomes back Relax, the live-soul-hip hop sensation from the Netherlands who released their second album Odeur de Clochard in early 2005. The band, which toured South Africa in 2002 to promote the “Live In Amsterdam” album, also made a memorable appearance at the OppiKoppi Festival. Relax also performed at the Drum Rhythm Festival, Lowlands, and at the North Sea Jazz Festival in The Hague before making an unforgettable appearance at the 2003 jazz festival in Cape Town. They will be warmly welcomed back to the Mother City. espAfrika will be releasing more names as they become available, but even at this early stage with artists of this calibre already confirmed it is looking like the line-up for the Cape Town International Jazz Festival 2006 will be as outstanding as in previous years.


Thousands of music fans will be heading to Barbados this January for some seriously easy-going jazz.The 13th annual Barbados Jazz Festival takes place on the island from January 9 to January 15, 2006.The highly anticipated festival is the country's leading musical and cultural event and regularly pulls the biggest names in jazz. Performers already booked for 2006 include Lionel Richie, Roy Hargrove, Boney James and the Cuban Jazz All-stars, to name a select few. However, the festival isn't out just to woo music fans with the top names in the business. It also believes in supporting new artists and every year gives performance slots to emerging artists. This year's festival will play tribute to the late Luther Vandross, who was a much-loved regular at past events. Thoughts and prayers will also be with the residents of New Orleans, the famed birthplace of jazz, following Hurricane Katrina. Several discount airlines offer regular flights to the Caribbean. Barbados is easily accessible. This week Spirit Airliens, the low-cost airline, announced that its Caribbean service has been well received since its launch, while American Airlines, Delta Airlines and others all fly direct to Bridgetown, the capital of Barbados.


Nominations for the 48th annual Grammy Awards were just announced and Jamiroquai has been nominated for Best Music Video, Short Form: Feels Just Like It Should! The 48th Grammy Awards will broadcast live in February.

Bobby Caldwell will sing on the next Jason Miles project What's Goin' On: The Music of Marvin Gaye. According Smooth Jazz Vibes Bobby Caldwell will sing on Distant Lover on the album. On his last album, producer and keyboardist Jason Miles – who has collaborated with many of the top names in smooth jazz – invoked the sprit of the late jazz trumpeter Miles Davis with a work called Miles to Miles. Now Miles has his sights on the songs of Marvin Gaye for a CD he’s just finished recording called What’s Goin’ On: The Music of Marvin Gaye. Miles rearranged many of Marvin’s greatest hits and enlisted several top-notch musicians to help him, including Bobby Caldwell, guitarist Nick Colionne on I Heard It Through the Grapevine, Spyro Gyra saxophonist Jay Beckenstein on Too Busy Thinkin’ Bout My Baby and trumpeter Herb Alpert on Let’s Get It On. As always, Miles assembled a killer rhythm section with bassists Marcus Miller, Scott Ambush and James Genus, drummer Gene Lake and percussionist Cyro Baptista on board. Among the CD’s other songs are such Marvin Gaye nuggets as What’s Goin’ On, Sexual Healing, Mercy Mercy Me and Ain’t Nothin’ Like the Real Thing. Guest vocalists include Chiara Civello, James "D Train" Williams and Guida DePalma. Jason Miles has produced several other concept albums, including To Grover, With Love, Celebrating the Music of Weather Report and A Love Affair: The Music of Ivan Lins.What’s Goin’ On: The Music of Marvin Gaye will be available Feb. 7 on the Narada label.

Nelson Rangell and special guest Lin Roundtree appear at the La-Z-BoyCenter/Meyer Theatre in Monroe, MI on January 28, 2006.

Thursday, December 22, 2005


This holiday season, Circuit City Stores will offer a helping hand to the millions of Americans who receive new MP3 players under the Christmas tree. According to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), more than 20 million MP3 players were shipped to U.S. retailers in 2005, with almost half expected to be sold during the holidays. The CEA says MP3 players grabbed the top-spot on adult wish-lists for tech gifts this year for the first time. Circuit City research indicates all age groups expressed growing interest in MP3 players. As a result of these findings, Circuit City decided to create a special week-long event, "MP3 Made Simple," to help people, especially novice users, overcome obstacles and uneasiness about digital music. From 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., Dec. 26 - 31, 2005, specially-trained associates will be on hand at Circuit City stores across the nation to offer tips on downloading music, ripping CDs, managing music play lists and more. Demonstrations will help explain how to use all MP3 players, including iPods. Circuit City associates will be glad to help demystify digital music for all visitors, regardless of where their MP3 player was purchased. For people who cannot attend the sessions in stores, Circuit City has posted helpful information on getting started with digital music at circuitcity.com. To access MP3 Get Started, click on the "What's New" tab in the upper left corner of the home page. Also available through circuitcity.com, MP3 player set up service from PlumChoice, which offers high- quality, consumer-friendly remote computer support for the home, home office and small business.


Tony Bennett has resigned his recording contract with the Sony Music Label Group. The first release under the four-year, two-album agreement will be a duets collection celebrating the singer's 80th birthday. Due in September, the Columbia album will find Bennett and guests revisiting his catalog of hits. Bennett, who won the 1994 album of the year Grammy for "MTV Unplugged," last week earned a best traditional pop vocal album Grammy nomination for The Art of Romance.

Starbucks has recently announced the unveiling of two new Hear Music Coffeehouses. The stores integrate a coffee shop with a traditional record store and digital download outlet. The new outlets, located in San Antonio, Texas and Miami, expand on the prototype Coffeehouse that opened in March 2004 in Santa Monica, Calif. The San Antonio and Miami locations will offer 1 million tracks for download, up from 250,000 at the Santa Monica store; and 5,000 physical titles, down from 10,000 in Santa Monica. Burned CDs cost $8.99 for seven tracks, and 99 cents for each subsequent track. Tracks are not available for loading onto portable players. The San Antonio store, located on the touristy Riverwalk, opens Dec. 19, while the Miami location South Beach, will open in early 2006.

The 48th Grammy nominations were announced recently and here is a partial listing of the Jazz nominees. In the category Best Pop Instrumental Performance - Caravan by Les Paul. In the category Best Contemporary Jazz Album nominees are: Keystone by Dave Douglas, Soulgrass by Bill Evans , The Way Up by Pat Metheny Group , The Spirit Music Jamia: Dance Of The Infidel by Meshell Ndegeocello, and Momentum by Joshua Redman Elastic Band .

For Best Jazz Vocal Album nominees are: J'ai Deux Amours by Dee Dee Bridgewater, Blueprint Of A Lady - Sketches Of Billie Holiday by Nnenna Freelon, Good Night, And Good Luck by Dianne Reeves , Duos II by Luciana Souza , and I'm With The Band by Tierney Sutton.

In the category Best Jazz Instrumental Solo, nominees are: 'Round Midnight by Alan Broadbent, Away by Ravi Coltrane, The Source by Herbie Hancock, A Love Supreme - Acknowledgement by Branford Marsalis, and Why Was I Born? by Sonny Rollins.

In the category Best Jazz Instrumental Album, Individual or Group, nominees are: Flow by Terence Blanchard, Lyric by Billy Childs Ensemble , Live At The House Of Tribes by Wynton Marsalis , Beyond The Sound Barrier by Wayne Shorter Quartet , What Now? by Kenny Wheeler With Dave Holland, Chris Potter & John Taylor .

In the category Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album, nominees are: Overtime by Dave Holland Big Band, A Blessing by John Hollenbeck Large Ensemble, Live by The Bill Holman Band , I Am Three by Mingus Big Band, Orchestra & Dynasty , Home Of My Heart by The Chris Walden Big Band .

In the category Best Latin Jazz Album (Vocal or Instrumental.), nominees are: Time Was - Time Is by Ray Barretto , Here And Now - Live In Concert by Caribbean Jazz Project Featuring Dave Samuels , ...And Sammy Walked In by Sammy Figueroa And His Latin Jazz Explosion , Listen Here! by Eddie Palmieri , Mulatos by Omar Sosa.

South African musician Jonathan Butler has joined Dave Koz, Patti Austin, David Benoit, Chris Botti, and other jazz notables recently for Dave Koz & Friends: A Smooth Jazz Christmas at Los Angeles’ beautiful Kodak Theatre. The concert, which continues throughout the month of December across the nation, is in its ninth year. This is Jonathan Butler’s first appearance on the Christmas show Bill and his excitement is nothing less than contagious. Butler’s latest project, Jonathan, is on the Rendezvous Entertainment label.

Ken Navarro's
latest CD – Love Coloured Soul is his 16th. It's smooth and relaxing and takes you back to a time when the world moved at a slightly slower pace. You can find his music at most music stores and on his website at www.kennavarro.com.

Coastal Jazz Radio - A Eclectic Mix of Jazz is the new internet jazz station on Live365.com. For those not familiar with internet radio, it streams behind your other applications and is perfect for background music while you're on the computer at work or at home. Two big advantages to the internet format is that the name of the song and artist appears as the song is playing, as well as the option to buy the CD or the individual song. This easily allows you see the name of the song you like and know who the artist is. Tuning in is free and a high speed connection is recommended. Access is worldwide. You'll hear a wide and diverse selection of jazz on Coastal Jazz Radio with artists such as Bill Evans Trio, Bill Shafton, Brad Mehldau, Branford Marsalis, Charlie Haden, Chet Baker, Daniel Lanois, Donald Fagen, Elvis Costello, Fitch, Fourplay, Gata Barbieri, George Mraz, John Martyn, John Scofield, Joni Mitchell, Keith Jarrett, Lynne Arriale, Mark Isham, Michael Brecker, Miles Davis, Mono, Rachael Yamagata, Sarah Vaughan, Suzanne Vega, Thievery Corporation, and Willie & Lobo.

Diana Krall's latest CD - Christmas Songs has already sold more than 316,000 copies since its Nov. 1 release, including more than 91,000 in the week that ended Dec. 11, according to Nielsen SoundScan

Bunny Rugs, lead singer of Reggae group Third World and ten time Grammy nominee has signed with Global Records. Global will be releasing his first single in February, 2006. Rugs has spent years collaborating and recording with some of the biggest names in music over the last several years, including duets with superstar Sean Paul to produce his new solo effort CD called What A World album prior to the release in stores online through a legitimate music download site to be announced.

Legend Mel Torme's youngest son, James, blends R&B with jazz in new CD, Comin'Home. Comin’ Home is James Tormé’s homage to an era of music which was filled with notions of romance and timeless values. The lyrics in these selections ring as true today as they did when they were written. Using a combination of musical influences, James’ freshman offering brings the sincerity of jazz classics to a whole new generation. Influenced as much by his multi-Grammy Award winning father, Mel, as he is by his own generation’s music, James is making these classics newly relevant and bringing jazz to now. "Dad’s idols growing up were Duke Ellington and Ella Fitzgerald, but I was influenced by a wider range of musical styles," James explains. "I had my dad’s era and everything that’s come out since to draw from. Because of that I am a different singer from my father, even if there is a lot of him in me." James’ introduction into performing was a headlining residency at Hollywood’s Viper Room where he gathered his early fan base. It would have served as a nice foray into R&B music, but all that was to change. When James sang a cappella renditions of ‘Round Midnight as his encore, it caused a reaction that couldn’t be ignored. "I just couldn’t resist the prospect of getting young people into music of this quality level," James admits. "I saw how deeply the song affected people, which made me want to sing more jazz songs. And the rest is history."
Tracks include unconventional renditions of Comin’ Home Baby, Ella Be Good, A Sleepin’ Bee, I’ve Got Plenty Of Nothin’, and It Don’t Mean A Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing).


Bob Sinclar - In The House -
More disco and bass heavy beats from Bob Sinclar known for his admiration of Cerrone’s music from the 70’s and for his remixes which have reached anthemic status in Ibiza.

Boozoo Bajou – Dust My Broom – On this their second album they create a classic album full of rare grooves which reflects their eased out attitude and pace. Very laidback and enjoyable!

Freshly Composted – Includes mixes by Whignomy Bros., Domu, Justus Kohncke, Laurent Garnier, Henrik Schwartz and Maurice Fulton.

Hotel Costes, Vol. 8 – the latest from Stephane Pompougnac provides the usual impeccable and intimate mix of exclusive tracks in the pure spirit of Hotel Costes.

Late Night With King Britt – soulful tunes, addictive and seductive samba tinged vocal house from mixmaster King Britt.

Madita – Madita – If you like dZihan and Kamien then then you are sure to enjoy this debut release from Madita.

Music for Modern Living – This 2-CD collection from the DJ-Team Mellow & Rivera features soul, jazz and funk from artists including Tom Jones, Barbara Lynn, Edwin Starr, Skeewiff, Folke Jensens, JuJu-Orchestra and Killergroove Formula.

Other releases include:
AfterdarkChicago (various artists)
AfterdarkSan Francisco (various artisits)
Alice RussellMy Favourite Letters
BlockheadDowntown Science
BreakestraHit The Floor
Broken Time OrchestraBroken Time
Clashing Egos - Rubicon
Corso Como 10 Pres.Love 3 (various artists)
Current Cuts, Vol. 1 (various artists)
Dialect Intersection (various artists)
Eric SumoMy Rocky Mountain
Far Out 100
(various artists)
Fort Knox & Jalapeno PresentThe Raid
Garden Compilation, Vol. 1
(various artists)
Get Salted, Vol. 1 (various artists)
Golden Boogie ConnectionSuper!
Invitation To Tango
(various artists)
Jaymz NylonAfrican Audio Reseach, Vol. 1
Jazzanova –
Remixes 2002-2005
Jazzcollectivo (various artists)
Jazzflora, Vol. 2 (various artists0
Kabanjak Meets Protassov feat. Jungle BrothersGrow EP 2
Vital Signs
Latin Vibes, Vol. 2 - Club Selection
(various artists)
Lemongrass - Ikebana
Man Ray, Vol. 4
(various artists)
Mezzanine De L’Alcazar, Vol. 4 (various artists)
MiwonPale Glitter
NickodemusEndangered Species
Exchanging (various artists)
Orange Fruit (various artists)
Osunlade Re-Offering (various artists)
Respect Is Burning, Ete D’Amour
(various artists)
Every Preston Guild
- Echoes
Searching For Soul
(various artists)
Secret Love 2 (various artists)
Sonar Kollektiv 4 (various artists)
Strange Funky Hames & Things (various artists)
Sven van HeesSynesthesia
Thomas Siffling & The Public Sound Orchestra
Wave Music, Vol. 9
(various artists)
Yukihiro FukutomiEquality
Zero Crossing
My Kinda Funk

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


Ray Charles has done it again! The late music legend tops music listeners' wish lists this holiday season for the second year in a row, according to a recent VH1 Poll that asked music lovers which artists topped their wish lists this holiday season. Ray Charles' Genius and Friends ranked #1 in a telephone poll commissioned by VH1 that surveyed a random national sample of approximately 1,000 20-49 year-olds who listen to music. Additional findings revealed that timeless artists continue to be popular in 2005 with Santana and Tim McGraw ranking in the top 5, as well as the old-school sounds from the soulful Alicia Keys. Other results include The Rolling Stones landing for the second year in a row at #7 this time with Bigger Bang while Bruce Springsteen's Born To Run 30th Anniversary scores the #9 spot and U2's How to Dismantle An Atomic Bomb appears on the poll again arriving in the top 20. This was also the first year that renowned musician Stevie Wonder made the list with A Time To Love.

The Top 10 CDs People Most Want This Holiday Season are:
1. Ray Charles - "Genius and Friends"
2. Alicia Keys - "Unplugged"
3. Santana - "All That I Am"
4. Stevie Wonder - "A Time To Love"
5. Tim McGraw - "Live Like You Were Dying"
6. Mariah Carey - "The Platinum Edition - The Emancipation Of Mimi"
7. Rolling Stones - "Bigger Bang"
8. Black Eyed Peas - "Monkey Business"
9. Bruce Springsteen - "Born To Run 30th Anniversary"
10. Gwen Stefani - "Love.Angel.Music.Baby"


The entertainment lineup has been announced for the upcoming production of Dionne Warwick: 45th Anniversary Spectacular which will be taped as a television special at the Kodak Theatre on January26, 2006 at 6:30 P.M. Dionne Warwick began her professional career began in 1961. Dionne has had over 60 Top 100 records in her 45-year career and has sold over 100 million records worldwide. Those confirmed to perform at the Kodak Theatre on January 26,2006 celebrating her 45th Anniversary in the entertainment business are: Yolanda Adams, Ashford & Simpson, Vanessa Bell-Armstrong, Shirley Caesar, Richard Carpenter, Deborah Cox, Andre Crouch, Sandra Crouch,The Emotions, Gloria Estefan, Edwin Hawkins, Lynette Hawkins, Tramaine Hawkins, Walter Hawkins, Cissy Houston, Olivia Newton-John, Kashif, Gladys Knight, Gerald Levert, Mary Mary, Donnie McClurkin, Brian McKnight, Mya, Milton Nascimento, The O'Jays, Jeffrey Osborne, Della Reese, Sir Cliff Richard, Smokey Robinson, Jill Scott, Richard Smallwood, The Spinners, Candi Staton, Angie Stone, B.J. Thomas, Leslie Uggams, Dee Dee Warwick, Nancy Wilson, BeBe Winans, Cece Winans, Stevie Wonder and that's just the beginning! There will also be a segment with Dionne performing for the first time with all of the legendary composers of her many hit tunes, including songwriters Burt Bacharach & Hal David, Thom Bell, Isaac Hayes, Holland-Dozier-Holland and Richard Kerr. There will be a lot of surprises planned for this evening and more than 100 stars from the recording, film, television and sports industries area aleady confirmed in the audience. The evening will feature a 48 member orchestra and chorus under the direction of Joey Melotti and Kathy Rubbicco. Tickets for the public for theconcert only are $65.00, $95.00, $125.00, $150.00 and are available at all Ticketmaster Outlets by calling 1-213-480-3232.

Thursday, December 08, 2005


Career-Spanning Hits Collection Includes Solo Tracks and Duets by Versatile Chanteuse and Is Available February 7

Refined and versatile, Roberta Flack's distinctive, jazz-influenced voice could kill the world softly with its smoldering intensity or set the night to music with a joyous shout. Rhino Records explores the sophisticated singer's musical range with this career-spanning compilation. The Very Best Of Roberta Flack is available February 7 at regular physical and digital retail outlets.

Featuring six #1 hits, The Very Best Of Roberta Flack contains 17 songs recorded by the inimitable singer between 1969 and 1991. The compilation includes music from Flack's solo records as well as her acclaimed duets with Donny Hathaway, Peabo Bryson and Maxi Priest. Originally released on Flack's 1970 debut, First Take, The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face did not become a hit until almost two years later when the song popped up in the movie "Play Misty For Me," a thriller starring Clint Eastwood. The biggest hit of 1972, the song was Flack's first chart-topper, reaching #1 on Billboard's Pop chart and #4 on the R&B chart.

The follow-up single, Where Is The Love, paired Flack with soul singer Donny Hathaway, whom she'd met in college. The song peaked at #1 on Billboard's R&B chart and #5 on its Pop chart in 1972. Flack continued her winning ways in 1973 with one of her best-loved tracks, Killing Me Softly With His Song. It was Flack's second song to reach #1 on Billboard's Pop chart (#2 on Billboard's R&B chart) and cemented her reputation as a smooth singing chanteuse. A year later, in 1974, Flack was back with an even bigger hit, Feel Like Makin' Love, which hit #1 on Billboard's Pop and R&B charts. In 1988 Flack hit #1 on Billboard's R&B chart with Oasis and in 1990 she hit #1 on Billboard's Dance chart with Steve Hurley's remix of Uh-Oh Ooh-Ooh Look Out (Here It Comes). Other gems included in the set are I Can See The Sun In Late December, which was penned by Stevie Wonder, and the rare B-side Trade Winds, which has been previously available only on a vinyl single.

The Very Best Of Roberta Flack also spotlights some the singer's most popular duets, including three more Flack and Hathaway collaborations: The Closer I Get To You, a #1 song in 1978 on Billboard's R&B chart and #2 on its Pop chart; Back Together Again, which cracked the Top 10 on Billboard's R&B chart in 1980; and 1979's You Are My Heaven. The collection also includes Flack's enduring duet with Bryson, Tonight, I Celebrate My Love, a wedding reception staple since its release in 1983. Flack teamed with Priest in 1991 for the Dianne Warren-penned hit, Set The Night To Music, which reached #6 on Billboard's Pop chart.

The Very Best Of Roberta Flack Track Listing
1. "Killing Me Softly With His Song"
2. "Feel Like Makin' Love"
3. "Where Is The Love" - With Donny Hathaway
4. "First Time Ever I Saw Your Face"
5. "The Closer I Get To You" - With Donny Hathaway
6. "Tonight, I Celebrate My Love" - With Peabo Bryson
7. "Oasis"
8. "Back Together Again" - With Donny Hathaway
9. "Only Heaven Can Wait (For Love)"
10. "Making Love"
11. "Set The Night To Music" - With Maxi Priest
12. "You Are My Heaven" - With Donny Hathaway
13. "Don't Make Me Wait Too Long" - With Donny Hathaway
14. "God Don't Like Ugly"
15. "Trade Winds"
16. "Uh-Oh Ooh-Ooh Look Out (Here It Comes)" - Steve Hurley's House Mix
17. "I Can See The Sun In Late December"


Universal Motown icon Stevie Wonder picked up six Grammy nominations today, five for his recently released album, A Time To Love, his first studio album in more than 10 years, featuring 15 new Wonder classics. The new disc, one of the premier Motown releases of this decade, was nominated for Best R&B Album, with the title track (featuring label mate India.Arie) being nominated for Best Pop Vocal Collaboration With Vocals. Other nominations include Best Male R&B Vocal Performance: So What The Fuss, Best Male Pop Vocal Performance: From The Bottom Of My Heart, and Best R&B Performance By A Duo Or A Group With Vocals: How Will I Know, featuring Stevie's daughter Aisha Morris. Stevie was also honored in that category for his duet with Beyonce for So Amazing, for their contribution to the An All-Star Tribute To Luther Vandross CD. The nominations for the 48th Annual Grammy Awards were announced in New York City this morning, with the awards being handed out on February 8th at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, and to broadcast live on CBS. For the prolific Wonder, who has already won 22 Grammy's and has received the prestigious Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, the six nods are confirmation that A Time To Love's evocative themes of the restorative power of love are connecting with both peers and fans. Other highlights of A Time To Love include If Your Love Cannot Be Moved,(featuring Kim Burrell), Positivity, (also featuring his daughter Aisha Morris), and the uplifting Shelter In The Rain, featuring gospel legend Kirk Franklin directing the angelic chorus on a song which has been embraced as asoothing anthem of inspiration for victims and survivors of the devastating hurricanes that ravaged the gulf coast. A Time To Love also includes guest appearances by Prince and Sir Paul McCartney, who plays acoustic and electric guitar on the title track. Shelter In The Rain, was specially serviced to Gospel and Christian radio stations, with all proceeds from the single directed to Stevie's charity organization The Wonder Foundation, which has earmarked the donations for Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. For more than four decades, Stevie Wonder has remained one of the most profound artists of our lifetime, selling more than 70 million records worldwide, and receiving hundreds of honors and awards throughout his career. A tireless humanitarian and champion for political and social justice,Wonder was the preeminent force behind the Martin Luther King holiday and USA For Africa, as well as helping to raise awareness about the AIDS epidemic and the scourge of Apartheid in South Africa. A leading voice in the fight against world hunger, Wonder also led a "Charge Against Hunger" in conjunction with American Express, which raised over $150 million dollars to feed nearly six million African Americans yearly. Most recently, Wonder was honored bythe United Negro College Fund's Evening Of Stars Tribute to the artist, for his longtime work on behalf of the UNCF. As a special treat for his hometown Motown fans, Stevie Wonder is scheduled to perform at the pre-game show for the Superbowl XL at Detroit'sFord Field on February 5th.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005


Don't forget to tune in tonight on CBS (10PM ET/PT) to watch the world's leading supermodels strut their stuff in the world's most glamourous lingerie to the steamy sounds of Chris Botti on the Victoria's Secret 2005 Fashion Show! Chris will open the fashion spectacular with his sensual jazz rendition of Embraceable You from his new album To Love Again. Also performing with Chris in the world's most celebrated fashion show will be Ricky Martin singing his new hit single Drop It On Me, and Seal who will be singing his hit songs Love's Devine and Crazy to his wife, model Heidi Klum. Watch as Chris adds his romantic touch to an already hot and sexy show featuring supermodels Gisele Bundchen, Adriana Lima, Heidi Klum, the last runway walk by Tyra Banks, and the introduction of the next generation of Victoria's Secret "Angels." Don't miss this milestone performance from Chris as he shows the world just why exactly his music is the soundtrack to every romance!

The 2006 edition of the Winter Music Conference is set for March 24-28 atthe Wyndham Hotel on Miami Beach. This year’s conference will include over30 seminars and panels, sessions by top international artists and DJs,technology demonstrations and the International Dance Music Awards. Formore information go to www.wintermusicconference.com.

The organizers of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival say that theyare committed to staging the event this coming spring, despite the setbacksfrom Hurricane Katrina. Typically, Jazz Fest normally runs seven days overa two-week period at the end of April and beginning of May, and it featuresvirtually every style of music with an average attendance of 500,000. For 2006 the organizers will have the difficult task of finding the localmusicians, brass bands, Mardi Gras Indians, artists and craftsman who haveleft the area and are now scattered all over the country. Organizers arehoping to confirm their plans in the next couple of weeks once they havecorporate funding and artists in line.

Columbia Records has released another holiday classic from Harry Connick Jr. out for the first time in DualDisc format, Harry For The Holidays features the original studio album plus new DVD content including footagefrom the Emmy-Award winning NBC special, an interview with Harry, and the Happy Elf movie trailer. Included are favorite holiday songs such as Frosty, The Snowman, Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, Silver Bells and many more.

Paramount Pictures in association with MTV films has announced plans to produce a film on the life and career of jazz chanteuse Nina Simone. Mary J. Blige will make her feature starring debut in the movie which willchronicle Simone's ascent to stardom and her relationship with Paris-based manager Clifton Henderson. Simone, known as the high priestess of soul,rose to fame in the 1960s with signature jazz ballads and such powerfulprotest songs as Mississippi Goddam and To Be Young, Gifted, and Black, an anthem of the civil rights movement. In 1974, the chanteuse went into exile, eventually ending up in Paris, where she died in 2003. Simone of late has been a favorite with DJs and remixers on the Verve Remixed series.

Betty Joplin Visions Of The Moment (Preserved Moments)
Charlie Hunter, Chinna Smith & Ernest Ranglin – Earth Tones (Green Streets Entertainment)
Fay Claassen – Two Portraits Of Chet Baker (2-CD, Jazz Impuls Holland)
Ingrid Jensen – At Sea (ArtistsShare)
Les Baxter – Primitive & Passionate/Les Baxter Balladeers (Collectibles)

Alex Candelaria – Yeahway (Evander)
Barry Wallentstein – Pandemonium (Cadence Jazz)
Blaise Siwula, Adam Lane & Toshi Makihara Slam Trio – In Still House(Cadence Jazz)
Eddy Waeldo – Favelas (Lichere)
Francis Wong Tentet – Legends & Legacies (Asian Improv)
Gene Ludwig – Live In Las Vegas (Blues Leaf)
Harold Land – Take Aim (Mighty Quinn)
Jason Hwang – Graphic Evidence (Asian Improv)
Joe McPhee, Matt Schipp & Dominic Duval – In Finland (Cadence Jazz)
Kraftwerk – Minimum-Maximum (DVD, 2004 album, 2-CD, Astralwerks)
Lex Baxter – Fruit Of Dreams (two-fer of Ports Of Pleasure and The Sacred Idol, El)
Lindsay Horner – Don’t Count On Glory (Cadence Jazz)
Mark Whitecage & The Bi-Coastal Orchestra – BushWacked: A Spoken Opera(Acoustics)Michael Petrucciani – Solo Live/Both Worlds (2-CD, Dreyfus)
Paul Anka – Rock Swings: Live At The Montreux Jazz Festival (DVD, Verve)
Phil Minton & Veryan Weston – Past (idischi di Angelica)
Phil Upchurch – In Concert Ohne Filter (DVD, Music Video Distributors)
Stephen Gauci Trio – We’re Comin’ Just One Time (Cadence Jazz)
Tatsu Aoki – Tatsu Aoki (Asian Improv)
Todd Terry – Todd Terry Trilogy: Past, Present & Future (3-CD, Ink)
Trevor Watts – World Sonic (Hi 4 Head)
Various Artists – Our New Orleans: A Benefit Album 2005 (Nonesuch)Vinkeloe/Smith/Nordeson – Elegans (Nuscope)

This new release from the Berlin-based production collective Jazzanova was united by a huge love of deep jazz sounds and that's the fabric running through their new remixes album. Even though the group has focused more ontheir own productions and collaborations lately, the band initially made a name for themselves via their eclectic remixes. In fact their The Remixes1997 - 2000 album, the pre-curser to The Remixes 2002 - 2005, was greeted with such enthusiasm and critical acclaim that it quickly became one of the essential electronic albums to own for any serious fan of nu-jazz, brokenbeat and future soul. As always, Jazzanova cover a lot of ground and genres on The Remixes 2002 -2005. Heavy's Wonderlove (For Minnie) recalls late 70s uptempo soul numbers with its sweeping strings and disco-friendly beats. Masters At Work and RoyAyers' collaboration on Our Time Is Coming has become a broken beat / house masterpiece in the hands of Jazzanova. The band's influence on the scene has been truly worldwide - that's perhaps why their trademark production skills have been requested by the likes of Brazilian legend Marcos Valle, British soul talent Shaun Escoffery, Finish quintet Nuspirit Helsinki andNew Zealand's Fat Freddys Drop who all appear on this CD. The Remixes 2002- 2005 is an appropriate sequel to their previous album and even thought the number of remixes have dropped, the quality certainly has not. Here is a listing of their upcoming tour dates:

Jazzanova 2005 Tour Dates
Dec. 7- Plastic People London Rec Release
Dec. 8 - Firenze tbc
Dec. 9 - Hamburg Rec Release
Dec. 9 - Bognor Regis @ Mud Club
Dec. 9- Sheffield tbcDec 10 - Birmingham
Dec. 10 - Berlin Rec Release @ Weekend
Dec 10 - Brighton - SK/Warm
Dec. 12 - London @ Worldwide Awards
Dec. 14 - Glasgow - Subclub
Dec. 15 - Nottingham tbc
Dec. 15 - Madeira
Dec. 16 - Porto
Dec. 16 - Warschau tbc
Dec. 17 - Lisbon
Dec. 17 - Bari tbc
Dec. 31 - Portugal tbc

Jazzanova 2006 Tour Dates
Jan. 13 - Chicago
Jan. 14 - Washington DC
Jan. 15 - New York
Jan. 17 - Orlando
Jan. 19 - Los Angeles
Jan. 20 - San Francisco
Jan. 21 - Seattle
Jan. 27 - München
Jan. 28 - Freiburg
April 2 - Sofia tbc
April 2 - Karlsruhe

Monday, December 05, 2005


Classic soul group, Ray, Goodman & Brown preview their new album – A MomentWith Friends available exclusively for now at soultracks.com. First as the Moments and then as Ray, Goodman & Brown, this trio has provided some ofthe greatest soul music of the last four decades, including Love On A TwoWay Street and Special Lady. A Moment With Friends is a salute to thegreat soul songs of the 60s and 70s. For this week alone, Ray, Goodman & Brown have agreed to offer this CD at a special price (including free shipping), plus autographed at soultracks.com.

San Francisco’s own KCSM(91.1FM) has the distinction of being the nation’sonly true 24-hour broadcast radio jazz station. Even New York City,considered the center of the musical form does not have a station thatplays only jazz with no news and information breaks. There is a station in New Jersey, however, it only plays 20 hours of jazz. Many other stations have opted the route of smooth jazz radio instead. The station features their daily Jazz Datebook listing live performances from around the Bay Area. DJs also interview musicians and offer historical and musical insights.

The third annual Panama Jazz Festival is scheduled for January 19-21, 2006. The three day event will feature the Randy Weston African Group, the David Sanchez Group, the Kurt Rosenwinkel Group featuring Mark Turner, the New England Conservatory Ensemble, the University Panama Big Band, led by Vitin Paz with special guests, Santi Debriano and the Sounds of Ashe From theUniversity of Massachusetts, the Carlos Garnett Quartet, Maurice Smith’sTribute Band, Folk Panamanian Musicians, among other national and international musicians.

Apple has confirmed that it is growing close to selling 100 million iTunes downloads in the European market. To celebrate, Apple has announced amajor prize for the music fan who grabs the winning track download. The winning package includes a 17-inch iMac G5, 3 30GB iPod, 10,000 free iTunes downloads and two tickets to see Robbie Williams perform live. Stateside, Apple has crossed the 500 million download milestone and is headed for the billionth download.

Upcoming CDs in the coming months include: Nina Simone’s Nina Sings The Blues (RCA) and Silk And Soul (Legacy), both due on January 17 and Kenny G’s The Essential Kenny G (Legacy) on January 24.

D.C's own Marcus Johnson will perform selection from his Smooth Jazz Christmas album as he appears live at Borders bookstore in downtown Silver Spring, MD on December 6 at 7PM.

Flamenco singer Diego Clavel surprises listeners once again with his latest release Por solea. Which is a very complicated, exhaustive and in-depthwork about the world of soleares. Released in digipack format, this new CD features the participation the guitarists Antonio Carrión and Paco Cortés. El Barrio's seventh release – Las playas de invierno (The Winter Beaches) is a surprising, committed and mature record. In this release, El Barrio remains faithful to his musical influences and continues moving between flamenco and rock like a fish in the water of the Cádiz beaches that inspire his oeuvre. Solo compass. From Utrera (featuring various artists) is an authentic gypsy party recorded live in Utrera, with the participation of artists from everyage group. Gitanos de Utrera are responsible for the singing and dancing,with accompaniment by the guitarists Paco Fernández, Antonio Moya and "Pitín de Utrera"."


Our New Orleans, Nonesuch Album of Newly Recorded Songs by New Orleans Musicians, Benefits Gulf Coast Hurricane Victims via Habitat for Humanity;to Be Released December 6 Artists Include Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Dr. John, Randy Newman,Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Irma Thomas, Allen Toussaint, Wild Magnolias,Buckwheat Zydeco, and Others

Nonesuch Records is releasing a benefit album of newly recorded songsfeaturing artists from the New Orleans music community - across a wide variety of styles - to document the depth, richness, and profound musicality of that unique city. Net proceeds from the sale of Our New Orleans will be donated to Habitat for Humanity International to aid those affected by the recent hurricanes along the Gulf Coast. A portion of those funds will be earmarked to help provide housing for New Orleans musicians through the recently announced Musicians' Village. Several of New Orleans' best-known musicians have recorded songs that are integral to their lives and that express their feelings about the city and the recent events there. The album was made swiftly and simply, over the course of a month, in several one-day sessions in cities across the country. Our New Orleans will be released December 6, 2005.

For this special project, Nonesuch has joined forces with others in theartistic community. Nick Spitzer, host of "American Routes" - a nationally syndicated weekly public radio music show produced in New Orleans - contributed liner notes to the record, as did Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Ford, also a Crescent City resident. Nonesuch's parent company - Warner Bros. Records, part of the Warner MusicGroup - is donating all of the production costs for Our New Orleans as part of the Group's larger efforts on behalf of hurricane victims on the Gulf Coast. Many others involved in creating the album are also generously donating their time and services.

Our New Orleans track listing:
1. Allen Toussaint - "Yes We Can Can" (producer, Joe Henry)
2. Dr. John - "World I Never Made" (producers, Mark Bingham/Hal Willner)
3. Irma Thomas - "Back Water Blues" (producer, Joe Henry)
4. Davell Crawford - "Gather by the River" (producers, Mark Bingham/Hal Willner)
5. Buckwheat Zydeco - "Cryin' in the Streets" (producer, Ry Cooder)
6. Dr. Michael White - "Canal Street Blues" (producers, Mark Bingham/Doug Petty)
7. Wild Magnolias - "Brother John Is Gone/Herc-Jolly-John" (producers, Doug Petty/Matt Sakakeeny)
8. Eddie Bo - "When the Saints Go Marching In" (producer, Nick Spitzer)
9. Dirty Dozen Brass Band - "My Feet Can't Fail Me Now" (producer, Joe Henry)
10. Carol Fran - "Tou' les jours ç'est pas la même" ("Every Day Is Not the Same") (producer, Nick Spitzer)
11. BeauSoleil - "L'ouragon" ("The Hurricane") (producers, Michael Doucet /Nick Spitzer)
12. Preservation Hall Jazz Band - "Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans" (producers, Doug Petty/Matt Sakakeeny)
13. Charlie Miller - "Prayer for New Orleans" (producers, Mark Bingham/Hall Willner)
14. The Wardell Quezergue Orchestra featuring Donald Harrison - "What a Wonderful World" (producers, Joel Dorn/Adam Dorn)
15. Allen Toussaint - "Tipitina and Me" (producer, Joe Henry)
16. Randy Newman featuring the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra with members of the New York Philharmonic - "Louisiana 1927" (producer, Steve Epstein)

Friday, December 02, 2005


SoulTracks Announces 2005 Readers Choice Award Winners
SoulTracks (www.soultracks.com), the leading online resource for classic and modern soul music, has announced the winners of its 2005 Readers Choice Awards, the largest international awards dedicated to independent soul music – i.e., music released by artists independent of the major international record labels.

For eight days in November, SoulTracks conducted an online poll of its substantial readership to choose the Best Male Vocalist, Best Female Vocalist, Best Duo or Group and Best Album of 2005. The ten nominees in each category were among the brightest stars of independent soul music, ranging from classic soul performers like the Chairmen of the Board to hot newcomers such as P.J. Morton. The voter response was overwhelming and from virtually every continent, causing SoulTracks to add online voting stations throughout the eight day event and demonstrating the growing interest in independent soul music both in the U.S. and abroad.

“We were overwhelmed by the interest shown by soul music fans around the world in our event,” said SoulTracks founder and publisher Chris Rizik. “Broadcast radio has focused so much on hip-hop, that it has often overlooked the tremendous soul music that is being released by extremely talented signed and unsigned artists. The thousands who participated in these awards demonstrated the thirst fans have for music that is fresh, exciting and also uplifting and positive. We saw substantial votes coming in from virtually every age group and country.”

The major award winner in the album category was Frank McComb for his CD Straight From the Vault. The top duo or group was the L.A.-based group The Rebirth, and the top male and female vocalists were Rahsaan Patterson and Meli’sa Morgan, respectively.

The top five vote-getters in each category will be spotlighted on SoulTracks in December, with the winners receiving special recognition. In addition, SoulTracks will be running a contest where it will be giving away CDs by the winners in all four awards categories. To enter, readers should send their email entries to CD giveaway (at) soultracks.com between Dec. 1 – Dec. 5, 2005.

Best Album
Frank McComb – Straight From the Vault (winner)
Angela Johnson – Got To Let It Go
Janita – Seasons of Life
P.J. Morton – Emotions
Conya Doss – Just Because

Best Duo or Group
The Rebirth (winner)
Cooly’s Hot Box
Tortured Soul
Chairmen of the Board
Steve Butler feat. Ron Haynes

Best Male Vocalist
Rahsaan Patterson (winner)
Frank McComb
Will Wheaton
Gordon Chambers
P.J. Morton

Best Female Vocalist
Meli’sa Morgan (winner)
Sy Smith
Angela Johnson
Conya Doss
Sunny Hawkins

SoulTracks.com is the leading online soul music resource, with more than 200,000 monthly visits by over 100,000 monthly readers. SoulTracks includes biographies of hundreds of classic and modern soul artists as well as CD reviews, news and “where are they now?” features. In October, 2005 SoulTracks was rated the most popular soul music website in the world by web ranking company Alexa.com. www.soultracks.com


Album Charts at #8 in Its First Week of Sales
One of the top-selling vocalists of all time, Enya follows her 13 million-selling album A Day Without Rain with the chart-topping debut of her sixth album, Amarantine, from Reprise Records. Amarantine hit the #8 spot on the U.S. album chart in its first week of sales after its November 22 release, the highest debut ever for an Enya album. The album entered the Top 10 charts in 14 other countries around the world, and the Top 15 in four more. With more than 65 million total album sales to date, Enya is one of the world's best selling musical artists.

Recorded in Ireland, Amarantine is classic Enya and once again, the record is a product of the extraordinary and long-standing creative partnership Enya has enjoyed throughout her career with producer/arranger Nicky Ryan and lyricist Roma Ryan. With its atmospheric blend of sublime melodies, symphonic caverns of sound and classical motifs, Amarantine will delight her legion of fans, to whom Enya's music acts as an oasis of calm and beauty in a world of clamor and chaos

Aside from new Christmas releases from Diana Krall and Anita Baker, comes a reissue from Al Green. The sleeper among reissues might be Feels Like Christmas by Al Green (Right Stuff), simply because more people may have missed it the first time around. Diana Krall's Christmas Songs (Verve) is at the top of this year's jazz/standards/cabaret crop, Krall sticks with lovely renditions of standards like White Christmas and Winter Wonderland. Anita BakerChristmas Fantasy (EMI), puts a lot of jazz-style reworking into familiar tunes like I'll Be Home for Christmas, and it pays off.

Steely Dan principal Donald Fagen is back on the solo trail with Morph The Cat his first solo album in 13 years with release set for early next year. He's joined by fellow musicians as drummer Keith Carlock, guitarists Wayne Krantz, Jon Herington and Hugh McCracken, clarinetist Lawrence Feldman, pianist Ted Baker and saxophonist Walt Weiskopf, among others. Morph the Cat is the follow-up to 1993's Kamakiriad, which debuted at No. 10 on The Billboard 200. Plans are in the works to release a boxed set featuring that set, Morph the Cat and Fagen's 1981 solo debut, The Nightfly.

Here is the track list for Morph the Cat:

"Morph the Cat"
"H Gang"
"What I Do"
"Brite Nitegown"
"The Great Pagoda of Funn"
"Security Joan"
"The Night Belongs To Mona"
"Mary Shut the Garden Door"
"Morph the Cat" (Reprise)

Unlike his other CDs, this CD features only Brazilian flavored sambas and bossa novas - 26 songs that were written over a 27 year period, the earliest dating back to 1976 when Derrik was a music student at Bennington College. The oldest song on the CD, Share Your Love, was recorded by Angela Bofill on her first LP Angie which nearly went gold and received a lot of airplay in NYC in 1978. The CD features the talents of many wonderful local musicians including Bob Stabach, Steve Sonntag, Dan DeWalt, Charlie Schneeweis and Johnny Yuma as well as Erik Lawrence and Eugene Uman. Guest vocalists include Alexandra Colmant on the title track and award-winning singer Lisa Sokolov.

Gladys Knight
will be among the acts that will perform at this year's Nobel Peace Prize concert, to be held December 11th in Oslo, Norway. The event, which will honor 2005 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei of Egypt, will be hosted by actresses Salma Hayek and Julianne Moore.

Alicia Keys and U2 frontman Bono have recorded the single Don't Give Up (Africa), originally a 1986 duet between Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush, for release through iTunes next Tuesday. The song, which they first performed together last month at the annual New York fundraiser for Keep a Child Alive, will benefit that organization's efforts to bring medicine to families dealing with HIV/AIDS.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005


Walter Elmore, Executive Producer of the Air Jamaica Jazz & Blues Festival, announces 2,624 subscribers in the first 21 days since the series has debuted using What I Want Podcastings' services
This January brings a refreshing beginning for jazz and blues lovers: the Air Jamaica Jazz & Blues Festival. Scheduled from January 26-28, this year's lineup will include John Legend, Patti LaBelle, Maxi Priest, Shaggy, James Ingram, Al Green, Air Supply and more. With the release of their podcast series, the popularity of this festival is exploding online. Recently, Walter Elmore hired What I Want Podcasting, a business podcast development firm that specializes in creating podcasts that integrate corporate branding. "This has never been done before; we are absolutely the first concert to use this technology. I am thrilled with the success of this new marketing tool, and it hasn't even been a full month since our debut," says Elmore. "What I Want Podcasting has developed a great synergistic fit for our market."

The latest addition to the list is four-time Vibe Award nominee and winner of the MOBO Award for Best R & B Artist, John Legend. Riding high on the successful major label debut of his album Get Lifted, Legend has earned his reputation as a singer, songwriter, pianist -- delivering classic R & B, with a spin. Legend will perform on the first evening of the three-day festival. "I think it really comes down to our choice of artists," Elmore adds. "We are always looking to please our listening and viewing audience. We do that by booking artists that have an international impact, and who complement the wonderful atmosphere we have created here over the years."

This year the festival, also called The Art of Music, developed a podcast concert series created by What I Want Podcasting. It can be found on iTunes, Yahoo! Podcasts, Odeo, and any other podcast directory, by simply typing in "Jazz & Blues." Here is a link to their most recent podcast of the Thursday Night Lineup: http://www.ereleases.com/pr/2005-AirJamaica.html.
The podcast concert series has had over 5,300 listeners in 21 days, and 49.5% of them have subscribed to the feed after listening to it, totaling 2,600. This is the first concert podcast series in the world; it is using the cutting-edge technology of podcasting to bring on-demand audio and video to its online audience. "It just seems like a perfect fit. We want those people
who are looking for jazz and blues content to find our site, get a taste of the concert to come, and book a flight!" Walter Elmore states.

By using What I Want Podcasting to develop their series, Air Jamaica Jazz & Blues has followed up on their international notoriety for being the best jazz and blues festival in the Caribbean. For more information on attending the festival, please contact http://www.airjamaicavacations.com/.

For more information on What I Want Podcasting, visit http://www.WhatIWantPodcasting.com, or email info@whatiwantpodcasting.com.

Botti will be playing the processional at the long-awaited wedding of Y&R characters Lauren Fenmore (Tracey E. Bregman) and Michael Baldwin (Christian LeBlanc) on Friday, Dec. 9. On Monday, Dec. 12, he will perform "My One and Only Love," the latest single from his recent CD, To Love Again, along with "Someone to Watch Over Me."

Although the wedding is a culmination of the love story of Lauren and Michael, fans know that Lauren's evil arch-enemy, Sheila Carter (Kimberlin Brown), is lurking in the shadows. The happy couple's lives could be in grave danger as Sheila prepares to get her long-sought revenge.

Since the release of his first solo album in 1995, Chris Botti has earned both critical acclaim and mainstream appreciation. A native of Oregon, he joined Paul Simon's band in 1990, where he remained for the next five years, and, in 1995, recorded his solo debut, First Wish. After scoring the 1996 film "Caught," Botti returned in 1997 with his second LP, Midnight Without You, which was followed by Slowing Down the World two years later. His 2002 watershed album, Night Sessions, peaked at Number Two on the Top Contemporary Jazz Albums chart while his seasonal collection, December, released the same year, hit Number Seven on the same chart. To Love Again follows the extraordinary success of Botti's groundbreaking last album, When I Fall In Love.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005



The CD's performers include Norah Jones, Diana Krall, Wynton Marsalis, Bette Midler, Art & Aaron Neville, Dianne Reeves, James Taylor, Cassandra Wilson & Buckwheat Zydeco. Blue Note Records has released Higher Ground, a CD that documents Jazz at Lincoln Center's Higher Ground Hurricane Relief Benefit Concert, a landmark evening of musical offering that was mounted by Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Artistic Director, Blue Note recording artist and New Orleans native Wynton Marsalis on September 17, less than three weeks after Hurricane Katrina imparted its devastation upon the Gulf Coast.

The concert and auction produced by Jazz at Lincoln Center have already raised over $2 million to date, and all proceeds from sales of the CD will also go directly to the Higher Ground Relief Fund established by Jazz at Lincoln Center and administered through the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, a non-profit community foundation, to benefit the musicians, music industry related enterprises and other individuals and entities from the areas in Greater New Orleans who were impacted by Hurricane Katrina and to provide other general hurricane relief.

The concert, which took place at Rose Theater in Frederick P. Rose Hall in New York City and was televised nationally on PBS and broadcast on XM Satellite Radio and NPR member radio stations in the U.S. and worldwide, boasted a remarkable array of talent including Norah Jones, Diana Krall, Wynton Marsalis, Bette Midler, Art & Aaron Neville, Dianne Reeves, James Taylor, Cassandra Wilson & Buckwheat Zydeco.

Higher Ground collects the highlights of the evening from Shirley Caesar's rousing opener This Joy through Cassandra Wilson's prayerful reading of Duke Ellington's Come Sunday with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. These 15 tracks pay tribute to the city of New Orleans, one of the greatest musical and cultural centers in all the world, through a multitude of musical moods & styles: Early to Modern Jazz, Gospel, New Orleans Funk, Folk, & Pop.

Other standout moments include New Orleans-born trumpeter Terence Blanchard's emotive and sweeping performance of Over There, Art & Aaron Neville's funky take on Go To The Mardi Gras, Diana Krall's laidback rendition of Basin Street Blues featuring Cyrus Chestnut on piano, James Taylor's heartfelt Never Die Young, Norah Jones' sweet solo piano reading of Randy Newman's I Think It's Going To Rain Today, and Wynton Marsalis' celebratory tribute to New Orleans icon Louis Armstrong on Dippermouth Blues.

The full track listing is as follows:
1. This Joy- Shirley Ceasar
2. Over There- Terence Blanchard
3. Go To The Mardi Gras- Art & Aaron Neville
4. Basin Street Blues- Diana Krall
5. Never Die Young- James Taylor
6. The House I Live In- Dianne Reeves
7. New Orleans Blues- Marcus Roberts
8. I Think It's Going to Rain Today- Norah Jones
9. Dippermouth Blues- Wynton Marsalis Hot Seven
10. I'm Gonna Love You Anyway- Buckwheat Zydeco
11. Is That All There Is- Bette Middler and the LCJO
12. Just A Closer Walk With The- Irvin Mayfield, Jr.
13. Here's To Life- The Jordan Family
14. Blackwell's Message- Joe Lovano
15. Come Sunday- Cassandra Wilson and the LCJO
16. Havana Blues- Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra
17. Bring Back New Orleans- Peter Cincotti

Irving Plaza in New York City will host Tosca on Wednesday December 7. Tosca is Richard Dorfmeister (of Kruder & Dorfmeister fame) and Rupert Huber, an accomplished classical pianist and composer. These two artists create a live Tosca show which includes vocalists Rob Gallagher (Galliano / Two Banks of Four), Ras Mc Tweed (Rockers Hi-Fi) and MC Earl Zinger! A visual performance by Fritz Fiske, the legendary visionary behind the Kruder & Dorfmeister shows will round off this evening.

Gilles Peterson
has delighted dance floors and listeners to his radio show by joining the dots between musical styles and eras. His record collection is so serious he keeps it in a separate house known as Brownswood. Regular listeners to Petersonís radio show (Worldwide airs on BBC Radio 1 weekly in the UK and is syndicated around the world) are occasionally treated to a Brownswood Basement selection where all the records are oldies, all on vinyl, and none have been re-issued. By popular demand this compilation features some of the Brownswood Basement rarities from the USA.

Remix Magazine is returning to South Beach in Miami for its 5th annual Remix Hotel. Billed as three days of “total technology immersion,” Remix Hotel will showcase equipment and software manufacturers demonstrating their latest products for remixers, producers and discjockeys. Remix Hotel Miami will be at the National Hotel on Collins Avenue from March 22nd-24th, 2006. There is no cost to attend and online registration is at www.remixhotel.com.

Blue Note Records has partnered with Jazz D.J. Rafe Gomez, host of nationally syndicated radio mix show The Groove Boutique and QVC's "The Groove Boutique With Rafe Gomez", to offer fans a new one hour, streaming Blue Note Mix featuring a seamless blend of old school flavors and new grooves from Blue Note artists past and present. Featured tracks in this streaming Blue Note Mix include tasty sounds from Soulive, Horace Silver, Grant Green, Reuben Wilson, Richard Groove Holmes, and many more. You can check out the Blue Note Mix at www.grooveboutique.com It is Mix # 14.

Blue Note Live: Music & Conversation is a new series at Symphony Space in NYC. Each presentation is hosted by Bruce Lundvall, President and CEO of Blue Note Records. These intimate conversations and performances each with a Blue Note artist take place at Symphony Space, located at 95th Street & Broadway in NYC. The upcoming artist list for Blue Note Live: Music & Conversation includes Stefon Harris on December 8th and Bill Charlap on January, 12, 2006. For more information on this wonderful new series, please visit www.symphonyspace.org.

Monday, November 28, 2005


Miles Davis had made the final list of the 2006 class of inductees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The induction is to be held March 13 at New York's Waldorf Astoria Hotel. A&M Records co-founders Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss will receive a lifetime achievement award in the non-performer category. Inductees in the side-men category have yet to be announced. Artists are eligible for the Rock Hall 25 years after the release of their first album. The 2005 class featured Buddy Guy, the O'Jays and Percy Sledge.

The Chicago-based electronica artist Mark Andrushko of Delicate Noise debut CD titled Diversion is his first solo release and gives a taste of precise engineered electronica. 12 songs that combine trip-hop, atmospheric, minimalism and synth-pop, Delicate Noise is a fresh voice of electronic music. Future Music Magazine has said, "Influenced by Massive Attack and Depeche Mode, this music is indeed delicate if not exactly noise. Slow tempo electronica with spoken effected vocals and a nicely ambient mix with plenty of space. Atmospheric stuff put together with a lot of care."

Diana Krall doing Christmas songs on the aptly titled Christmas Songs is sure to please her fans, jazz lovers, and anyone looking for a smooth-sounding, wholly predictable holiday disc. Krall delivers exactly what one would expect with these 12 mainstream tunes, seven of which are backed by the Clayton/Hamilton Jazz Orchestra.

Hallmark announced today that Michael McDonald's Through the Many Winters, A Christmas Album, has gone Gold. The ten-track album reached Gold status (500,000 copies sold) two week safter its release and a full week before Thanksgiving, a holiday that is acknowledged to kick off Christmas shopping. Hallmark is the only specialty retailer to have achieved Platinum and Gold certification of their CDs, sold only at their retail outlets. Hallmark CDs are sold exclusively by more than 4,000 Hallmark Gold Crown(R) stores and are available for a limited time. Each CD has a focused, seasonal or event.

eMusic, the world's No. 2 digital music download service, selling more than 3 million tracks monthly, today announced its first retail promotional partnership with computer and electronics retailer CompUSA. Under the agreement, CompUSA consumers will get 100 free eMusic downloads with the purchase of any item at any of their 244 retail stores across the United States. All songs in eMusic's vast and rich 900,000 track catalog are available to CompUSA customers under this promotion. In addition, CompUSA will sell prepaid download cards for eMusic songs that allow customers to buy tracks on an a la carte basis-and own them forever-at a substantially lower price than other mainstream services. Cards will be available for 15 songs priced at $7.50 ($.50 per song); 20 songs at$9.99 ($.50 per song); and 65 songs at $29.99 ($.46 per song).

David Hoffman and Paul Adams team up as the Neurons for Dance and afro-influenced percussion, jungle beats and worldly jazzy grooves. Club deejays will love the adventurous Wild Men of Bornerneo. Funky rhythms, turntablist scratching, stellar trumpet playing, and exotic flute characterize the amazing Funky Tao Duty.

Robin Avery recently released her second album—The Way You Hold Me - a smooth jazz album that adds pop, Caribbean, and R&B flavors. All but two of the tracks were co-written by Avery and her life partner, keyboardist and producer Paul Banman. With a variable lineup that features Banman on keyboards, Avery delivers an album loaded with charming melodies. Saxophonist Warren Hill joins the ensemble for the cover of Drive.

Friday, November 25, 2005


Deutsche Grammophon will release a live recording of Elvis Costello with the 52-member Metropole Orkest jazz orchestra, which was captured at the North Sea Jazz Festival in the Netherlands in July, on February 24. My Flame Turns Blue features versions of Costello's Clubland and Watching The Detectives, a lyrical version of Charles Mingus' Hora Decubitus, and performances of other Costello compositions that haven't previously appeared on any of his official releases. The package will also feature a bonus disc featuring a 45-minute suite from Il Sogno.

Cape Town International Jazz Festival - 2006
The 7th annual Cape Town International Jazz Festival, affectionately known as 'Africa's Grandest Gathering' and acknowledged as the biggest Jazz event on the African continent, will take place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre on Friday 31 March and Saturday 1 April 2006. Artists scheduled to perform include Manu DiBango & Soul Makossa Gang, the Chucho Valdés Quartet featuring Mayra Caridad Valdés, Latin Grammy Award winner Nestor Torres, Tina Schouw and Friends, Freddy Cole, Louie Vega's "Elements of Life" 12-piece project, featuring vocalists Blaze, Anane and Luisito Quintero on percussion, Terence Blanchard, Miriam Makeba, Sipho 'Hotstix' Mabuse, and Mario Canonge Trio featuring Horacio El Negro Hernandez.

Patti Labelle and Jill Scott are teaming up to record the single What About Love? from the Broadway musical version of "The Color Purple." The duet will be released as a bonus track on a cast album due Jan 24 via Angel Records.The cast recording is being produced by Jay D. Saks, while the single is produced by James Poyser.


Concert of Live Show in Stores This Week; PBS Great Performances Telecast Scheduled to Air in December

International singing star Michael Bublé has finally been caught in the act -- a true cause for celebration. He was caught performing a stunning concert, filmed and recorded at LA's famed Wiltern Theatre earlier this year. The deluxe DVD package, which includes a bonus CD of additional tracks, is scheduled to be in stores this week. The entire show of Caught In The Act is scheduled to air on Thirteen/WNET New York's Great Performances series Wednesday, December 7 at 8 p.m. (ET) on PBS, and later throughout the month (check local PBS listings).

Bublé, who has been performing around the world for rabid fans of all ages, has critics raving about his talent. "He had 'em dancing in the aisles... a natural showman... belted out standards like a master," raved the Toronto Star about his recent performance. "Backed by a 12-piece band playing arrangements that would make Nelson Riddle smile, Bublé can sing and swing. He moves easily between ballads and up-tempo numbers. Michael Bublé has arrived and in fine style," echoed Robert Nesti of the Boston Herald.

Caught In The Act includes guest performances by trumpet virtuoso Chris Botti, an exquisite duet of the standard, You'll Never Find with sensational Italian diva Laura Pausini and a hilarious surprise visit by Josh Groban. Whether performing a reeling version of the Nina Simone classic Feelin' Good, Van Morrison's Moondance, the Bublé penned No. 1 single Home or the show-stopping version of Save the Last Dance for Me, the DVD clearly shows this phenomenal artist at the peek of his talent. With fresh versions of How Sweet It Is and Try A Little Tenderness, he's equally at home with ballads such as You Don't Know Me and That's All. The Vancouver native's love for the music and entertaining is clear throughout the show. The DVD also includes exclusive behind the scenes footage of Michael and his band backstage at the Wiltern.

The Las Vegas Hilton has signed Bublé for an exclusive Valentine's Weekend performance that has the singer playing February 10, 11, 12 and 14. Contest winners from all over the globe will be flying to celebrate Valentine's Day with their favorite singer.

This past year alone, Bublé has circled the globe no less than a dozen times performing sold-out shows throughout the U.S., Europe and Australia. His current platinum CD, It's Time which included the No. 1 Bublé penned smash single Home, along with his self-titled debut have sold over 7 million CDs worldwide.

Caught In The Act, a co-production of Thirteen/WNET New York and Reprise Records, was directed by David Horn. "Michael may be influenced by his predecessors -- Sinatra, Bobby Darin, et al, but the effect is no simple impersonation. He loves these singers and he loves their songs but there's no question his sound and musical instincts are all his own," echoed Horn. "And, best of all, he's really funny, a natural showman. He plays with the style, as much as he honors it," commented Horn.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005


We've got the new dates for you and they are hot off the press:

July 11th Salzburg Arena, Austria
August 18th Freiburg Brauereihof, Germany
August 19th Bonn Museumsplatz, Germany
August 22nd Hannover Parkbuhne, Germany
August 23rd Gelsenkirchen Ampitheater, Germany
August 25th Losheim/Saar Strandbad, Germany
August 26th Heilbronn Wertwiesenpark, Germany
August 27th Coburg Schlossplatz, Germany


If you are a fan of Dave Koz, then you need to take note that this weekend your local smooth jazz radio station will feature a special edition of The Dave Koz Radio Show! You can join Dave as he celebrates this Thanksgiving weekend by bringing you back, by popular demand- -an encore presentation of the show with Kenny G! Also on The Dave Koz Radio Show, guitarist George Benson digs into the listener mailbag to answer a question....saxophonist Steve Cole shares his “must-have” CD's...plus Dave willl jump back into time to relive a Smooth Jazz classic.

The Ninth Annual Dave Koz and Friends: A Smooth Jazz Christmas tour is well under way, their first stop Lake Tahoe. It is still not too late to claim your seat to this must-see Christmas show! Joining Dave this year, vocalist Patti Austin, composer and pianist David Benoit and guitarist and vocalist Jonathan Butler.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


Bassist and composer Charlie Haden appears at Yoshi’s in San Francisco December 6th through the 11th along with his group – the Liberation Music Orchestra. Haden and his band have just released their new Verve CD, Not In Our Name. The Liberation Music Orchestra includes Haden, Alan Broadbent (piano), Tony Malaby & Chris Cheek (tenor sax), Miguel Zenon (alto sax), Michael Rodrigues & Seneca Black (trumpet), Curtis Fowlkes (trombone), Joe Daley (tuba), Steve Cardenas (guitar), and Matt Wilson (drums).

MTV Networks launched the Tempo cable channel (on November 21) across the Caribbean (and in the U.S. in 2006) as it targets all people with a passion for the Caribbean lifestyle. The channel provides a mix of original and acquired programming that is vibrant, relevant to its audience and true to the spirit of the Caribbean and its culture. Tempo joins MTV Network's roster of popular and highly-targeted cable networks which includes VH1, MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, BET and SpikeTV. Among the many programs broadcast will be the two and a half hour concert series "Tempo Live and Direct." Bringing the power of music to the people, the series will showcase five groundbreaking events taking place on various islands in the Caribbean. The concerts will feature an array of artists including Beres Hammond, Doug E. Fresh, Elephant Man, The Game, Jimmy Cliff, Krosfyah, Lady Saw, Luciano Machel Montano, Rihanna, Rupee, Toots and the Maytals, Wyclef Jean and many more! At launch, systems covering 20 Caribbean countries, including Anguilla, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman, Curacao, Dominica, the Dominican Republic, Grenada, Jamaica, Montserrat, Nevis, St. Maarten, St. Kitts, St. Lucia, Trinidad & Tobago, Turks & Caicos and the U.S. Virgin Islands will carry Tempo on an expanded basic level of service to more than 300,000 homes.

Pop music legend Carly Simon meets legendary ocean liner Queen Mary 2 during the much anticipated broadcast of Carly Simon: A Moonlight Serenade on the Queen Mary 2, airing nationwide on more than 100 PBS stations starting December 1. Simon's historic performance was recorded in QM2's Queens Room, the largest ballroom at sea, and marks the first time that a television special was taped during a transatlantic crossing. The 90-minute program showcases Simon's inspired renditions of romantic standards from her chart-topping album, Moonlight Serenade, as well as some of her most-loved greatest hits, and includes behind-the-scenes footage of the renowned singer exploring the elegant surroundings of the grandest passenger liner ever built. The full concert DVD on Columbia Records went on sale November 22 and was directed by veteran concert filmographer Jim Gable who has worked with other such music icons as Sting, the Rolling Stones and Cyndi Lauper.

Jamie Cullum and Leela James join the lineup of featured performers on VH1’s broadcast of "The Second Annual UK Music Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony" airing on November 26t. The second annual "UK Music Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony" took place at the famed Alexandra Palace in London on November 16th and premieres on VH1 as a two-hour live extravaganza on Saturday November 26th 9:00 PM ET. VH1 Classic will air the entire, unexpurgated ceremony on Sunday, November 27th at 8:00 PM ET/5:00 PM PT and again at 11:00 PM ET/8:00 PM PT.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...