The Slim Man Band LIVE at Vicky’s

A double LIVE CD of mostly Slim Man songs, some Bona Fide tunes, and a few cool covers.

Slim Man just won Best Jazz Vocalist at the 2019 Coachella Music Awards. Fourth year in a row. He wants to put out a double LIVE CD. He knows it sounds a little crazy and a bit ambitious but let him tell you the story…

“I’m from Baltimore, Maryland. I moved to Palm Springs, California, a few years ago. Last October, I was asked to do a residency at a listening club outside of Palm Springs, a place called Vicky’s.

I put together a band, and we played every Wednesday night for 3 ½ hours, week after week, month after month. Some magic started happening on stage. We kept improving, learning new songs, crafting the catalog, honing the arrangements.

We’d play on a Wednesday night and then every Thursday I’d send the band my show notes, ideas on how to improve. We started getting better and better. We were hitting our stride.

After 8 months, and 32 shows, I decided to do a live recording of Our Big Finale, the last show of the season. Wednesday, June 5th, 2019. Vicky’s was packed. We played for 4 hours and 18 minutes.

When we went into the studio a couple days later to listen to the recording, I was apprehensive. Live CDs are tough to make. That’s why there are very few of them these days, and even fewer good ones. So we sat down in the studio and listened…

What came out of the speakers sounded really good. Song after song, the music was stellar. The performances were excellent. The 9-foot grand piano sounded glorious. The music had some sizzle. There was definitely some pep in the pepperoni.

We  started out as a group of musicians, and over time became a band. And most important, the band is having fun. You can hear it on this recording.

I tried to create a set list that has peaks and valleys, a list that has highs and lows and in-betweens. I varied the tempos…some songs are slow, some are fast, and some are half-fast! We did lots of Slim Man songs, some Bona Fide songs,  and a couple cool covers. It’s a wonderful mix of music.

We want to finish this project. And to get that done, we need some funding. And that’s where you Slim People come in. We need a minimum of $6,000 to get these songs mixed and mastered. And then there’s promotion. We want to hire the proper people to spread the word, to give it the best chance of success.

The more money we raise, the better chance for success.

I’ve done 2 LIVE CDs already. I’ve got a feel for this stuff. And I’ve run 4 successful Kickstarter campaigns. I haven’t had any complaints yet!

We’ve put together some very cool rewards. Kickstarter’s a great platform to find funding for creative projects you’re passionate about. And I’m passionate about this. I wouldn’t be putting this CD up on Kickstarter if I didn’t feel really good about this music.

So make a pledge, get cool stuff.

Thank you for listening. And thanks for the support.

Couldn’t do it without you Slim People.

Who loves ya?

 

Uncle Slimmy ”

To support the project visit

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/slimman/the-slim-man-band-live-at-vickys/description.

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Dave Bradshaw Jr. – Latina Love

 

The story behind Dave Bradshaw’s development as a contemporary urban jazz artist after years as a renowned, very versatile sideman in Southern California is as poignant as “Jumpstep” is uplifting. For 13 years, he was a member of the Al Williams Jazz Society, a popular, multi-faceted ensemble led by the popular jazz drummer and jazz promoter, known for their regular gigs at Spaghettini in Seal Beach and rousing annual performances at the Long Beach Jazz Festival. The keyboardist had the pleasure of opening for genre greats like Kenny G and Brian Culbertson; he was often inspired by their success and felt like he had the potential to become an artist and performer in his own right. But at some point, while continuing at the top of his game technically, he started feeling like he was losing his passion for music.

The passing of Bradshaw’s father in 2010 changed everything, making him realize like never before that time was quickly passing by and if he wanted to pursue deeper dreams, this was the time. Composing became a necessary catharsis, and he began putting all of his intense emotions over his dad’s loss into music. Excited by what he was writing, he invested in DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) software and started making his own beats and tracks. He was encouraged by many of his musical cohorts to do a recording. He started off very DIY, printing his own CDs with graphics he created himself.

His first album was Set Me Free (2016), followed by Flipside (2018). From his new album comes Latina Love featuring the Earth, Wind & Fire Horns.

Listen to Latina Love on Smooth Jazz Buzz (Playlist 8/4).

Adam Hawley – Shuffle

Los Angeles based guitarist Adam Hawley has already worked as sideman for stars like Jennifer Lopez, Monica, Kenny Latimore, Rick Braun, Dave Koz, Richard Elliot, Michael McDonald, Brian Culbertson and many more.

More important is his solo career, which he started with his aptly titled album Just The Beginning in 2016. His friend and band mate Greg Manning helped him to get a contract with the label Kalimba music. Now Adam returns on the same label with his second album Double Vision in 2018.

He is joined on the new album by an incredible huge cast of musicians such as Dave Koz, Keith McKelley, Darren Rahn (saxophone), Carnell Harrell (organ), Nathaniel Kearney Jr. (key bass), Eric Valentine, Gary Novak (drums), Ramon Yslas (percussion), Jeff Lorber(Rhodes, piano, Clav), David Mann (horns and arrangement), Mel Brown, Julian Vaughn, Ian Martin(bass), Marcus Anderson (sax, flute), Demonte Posey (Rhodes), Carnell Harrell (synth), Greg Manning (keys), Kat Hawley (vocals) and Trevor Neumann (trumpet).

From his new album comes his single Shuffle. Shuffle featuring Darren Rahn develops from a routine piece of music into a uniquely personal style of a guitarist who knows his crafts.

Listen to Shuffle on Smooth Jazz Buzz (Playlist 11/3).

Ragan Whiteside – Jam It

 

The sizzling summer heat. A backyard barbecue filled with food, family and friends. A tune comes on the radio that instantly sets bodies in motion. As people start moving and grooving, someone exclaims, “That’s my jam!” This scene is what soul-jazz flutist Ragan Whiteside envisioned when creating her latest single, “Jam It.” The hot track became her fourth consecutive Billboard Top 10 single when it hit the ninth spot on the chart for the week of August 3. At No. 9 with a bullet, it’s still rising like the mercury.

Whiteside wrote “Jam It” with seminal urban-jazz artist Bob Baldwin, who produced the joint with Dennis Johnson (Marion Meadows, Freddie Jackson, Phil Perry, Melba Moore). The cut previews Whiteside’s forthcoming fifth album, “Five Up Top,” slated to drop this fall from Randis Music, an indie label run by Whiteside and Johnson.

“Your favorite party song comes on the radio and someone claims it as their jam. I wanted ‘Jam It’ to give you that feeling and get people dancing – whether you’re at a backyard barbecue or just driving to work. Wherever you’re listening, you should turn up your speakers and JAM IT!” said the Atlanta-based Whiteside.

Whiteside’s hit streak began when her 2017 “Treblemaker” album sent all three singles into the Billboard Top 10. Another collaboration with Baldwin, “Early Arrival” featuring saxophonist Kim Waters, got things started when it checked in at No. 7. She scored her first Billboard No. 1 hit with “Corey’s Bop,” a clubby trek she wrote with Johnson and Baldwin. Her own boisterous party starter, “See You at the Get Down” celebrated at No. 5.

Whiteside’s vibrant and velvety flute leaping amidst jazzy rhythms and funky beats is ushering her instrument back into the centerstage spotlight. She takes pride in being a completely independent artist who is flourishing while releasing her own recordings. A classically trained flautist and vocalist who grew up in Mount Vernon, New York, Whiteside took up the flute after first learning piano, violin and drums as a child. While studying classical music, she discovered her passion for songwriting and arranging. When Whiteside first became a jazz, funk and R&B mixologist, she won the Capital Jazz New Artist competition. She began collaborating with Baldwin and Johnson for her debut disc, “Class Axe” (2007), pouring splashes of classical into intoxicating jazz, funk and R&B cocktails. Whiteside incorporated fusion into the branded brew on subsequent sets: 2012’s “Evolve,” 2014’s “Quantum Drive” and “Treblemaker.” Among her honors, Whiteside was named Flutist of the Year at the Black Women in Jazz & Fine Arts Awards.

Either on her recordings or as a guest artist, Whiteside has flanked urban/contemporary jazz cohorts Earl Klugh, Kirk Whalum, Rick Braun, Marion Meadows, Walter Beasley, Patrice Rushen, Chieli Minucci, Frank McComb, Eric Darius, Baldwin and Waters. Her spirited stage performances have made her a popular draw at festivals and cruises such as the Seabreeze Jazz Festival, Mallorca Smooth Jazz Festival and the Capital Jazz SuperCruise. Catch Whiteside in the coming weeks at the Derby City Jazz Festival in Louisville, KY on August 10; Fourth Avenue Jazz Festival in Birmingham, AL on August 24; and at the Gulf Coast Jazz Summer Fest in Pensacola, FL on September 1. For more information, please visit http://www.raganwhiteside.com.

Source: Great Scott Productions

Listen to Jam It on Smooth Jazz Buzz (Playlist 5/4).

Reggie Codrington – Sunny Skies

 

When the burden of caring for aging and ailing parents is added to the daily stresses and strains, sometimes simply seeing sunny skies is enough to help get through the day. That scenario is what inspired urban-jazz saxophonist Reggie Codrington’s new single, “Sunny Skies,” which he wrote with bassist-producer Darryl Williams. The hopeful mid-tempo R&B groove, mixed by hitmaker Euge Groove and going for playlist adds on August 12, features Codrington’s soulful soprano sax expressions and trumpet play from his 82-year-old father who is battling Alzheimer’s.

Afflicted with Ataxic Cerebral Palsy that required nine major surgeries even before he became a teenager, Codrington is returning the loving care he received from his parents, Joyce and Ray Codrington. The grind is a challenge physically and mentally, but the optimistic artist awakens each day seeking beauty and blessings in his life that put a smile on his face.

“The song (‘Sunny Skies’) makes me feel happy. I find beauty all around me, even in the rain. But seeing sunny skies makes me feel especially peaceful and happy. Blue skies make me feel close to nature. I’m a pretty simple guy. Life is complicated enough and so are all the things going on in life. Sunny skies keep me moving forward,” said Codrington.

After an intro from Codrington’s label, M.A.N.D.A.T.E Records, Codrington and Williams hooked up a few years ago at a jam session. Williams sent a track to the saxman who then wrote the buoyant melodies for “Sunny Skies.” With Williams programming the drum tracks, playing piccolo and synth basses and keyboards, Codrington emotes smilingly on a special curved horn designed to overcome his physical limitations. Guitarist Darrell Crooks, who has recorded with Grammy winners Eric Clapton, Boyz II Men, Ledisi, Gregory Porter and Kirk Whalum, adds rhythmic licks while Rymand Entezari contributes electric piano touches. Codrington gets emotional when talking about his father, who has played with Little Richard, Gladys Knight and Jackie Wilson, making a guest appearance on the single.

“Yeah, man, he’s an inspiration for me. It means a lot (to me) to have him on the record with all that he’s going through with Alzheimer’s. There’s great beauty in that as well as inspiration for me. Taking care of my parents as their health fails, I try to find the bright spots in each day to keep from feeling down. Everyone has got to find their own ways to get through the day. It could be as simple as looking up in the skies. Just seeing beautiful blue skies makes me feel like I can take on the world,” said the Fayetteville, North Carolina-based Codrington who studied music at Howard University.

Last year, Codrington dropped a single, “Cherry Sweet,” a song that sprang from helping his mother feel better by giving her cherries. It appeared on his “Against The Odds” disc, titled for the improbable story of how he overcome a rare disability and found a home in music. Ataxic Cerebral Palsy is the least common form of the disorder and is a chronic condition that affects movement and muscle coordination, sparking tremors and walking difficulties. Muscles were cut and transferred from his elbow, wrist and triceps to improve the functionality of his fingers. To make walking easier and enhance mobility, muscles were sliced from his legs. The curved sax enables him to play comfortably. Codrington has performed for President Barak Obama, recorded with Jeff Lorber, Paul Jackson Jr. and Nils, and opened for Ramsey Lewis, Charlie Wilson, Frankie Beverly & Maze, Peabo Bryson, Kenny Latimore, Kim Waters and Kevin Toney. He’s too modest to know what an inspiration he himself is for others.

For more information, please visit https://www.ReggieCodrington.com.

Source: Great Scott Productions

Willie Bradley – Over The Horizon

 

Trumpeter Willie Bradley’s new single “Over The Horizon” is killer! It’s the second single from Willie’s forthcoming new album, It’s My Time.

“Over The Horizon” ft. Julian Vaughn
Written by Willie Bradley (BMI)
Produced/co-written by Jeff Canady (BMI)
Mixed by Greg Manning

Trumpet/flugelhorn – Willie Bradley
Lead bass guitar – Julian Vaughn
Keyboards – Demetrius Nabors
Bass guitar – Robert Skinner
Lead guitar – Gary Johnson
Drums – Jeff Canady

Listen to Over The Horizon on Smooth Jazz Buzz (Playlist 8/4).

Dave Koz and Friends – Before I Let Go

Overcoming massive scheduling problems, saxophonist and entertainer Dave Koz has again managed to win some of the best musicians for his Summer Horns project. His new dream team consists of trumpet player Rick Braun, saxophonists Gerald Albright and Richard Elliot as well as trombonist and singer Aubrey Logan, a featured artist for Postmodern Jukebox.

Greg Adams, Tom Scott and Gordon Goodwin, who also arranged the previous album, are on this recordings again. Featured artists are singer Kenny Lattimore and Sheléa Frazier, Jonathan Butler and Gloria Estefan. The press release also mentions a rhythm arrangement by Chris “Big Dog” Davis.

Summer Horns II From A To Z is based on the same principle as the previous album. Selected songs that have passed the test of time and yet remain in lasting memory. The common denominator of all songs is a horn arrangement that qualified the piece for inclusion on the album. Cross-genre, dynamic and with a certain pep.

From this album the group releases Before I Let Go. This new single featured in the original Frankie Beverly and the group Maze. The song is completely transcribed to a horn arrangement featuring the formation in Toto and as soloists.

Listen to Before I Let Go on Smooth Jazz Buzz (Playlist 8/4).