Brian Culbertson delivers his Valentine with “Love”

 

Contemporary jazz-R&B funkster Brian Culbertson has had love on his mind essentially since last Valentine’s Day. Inspired by the occasion of his twentieth wedding anniversary last fall, the keyboardist began writing thirteen new songs about a year ago dedicated to his wife, Michelle, which make up his “Colors of Love” album that was released on Wednesday, Valentine’s Day, by BCM Entertainment. Substituting the live band instrumentation customary of his recordings, Culbertson crafted an intimate set of ardent acoustic piano melodies using sensual synth grooves and textures. With the title track of his eighteenth album that he wrote, arranged and produced already in the Billboard Top 5, his attention is fixed on creating the highly-theatrical production he’ll take on the road for nearly three months beginning March 30 across the bridge from Philadelphia in Collingswood, New Jersey and concluding in Seattle on June 17.

Culbertson showcases his proficiency as a multi-instrumentalist by playing virtually all the instruments heard on “Colors of Love” – piano, keyboards, Fender Rhodes, Wurlitzer, Hammond B3 organ, synth bass, drum programming, percussion and trumpet. The only supplementation came from guitarist Isaiah Sharkey along with an ethereal accordion passage from Peter White on the song “In A Dream.” Impassioned tracks like “I Want You,” “Love Transcended,” “Don’t Go,” “You’re Magic,” “Let’s Chill,” “Desire,” “In Your Embrace” and “The Look” employ caressing melodies and sultry rhythms to allure, soothe and seduce. Even more revealing and evocative is the ravishing piano poetry of “Through The Years,” “Michelle’s Theme” and “All My Heart,” poignant solo pieces that Culbertson uses effectively to tell wordless stories of romance and amorous contemplation.

As he lovingly conceived the cozy collection depicting the many different “colors” of romantic love, Culbertson envisioned mounting an elaborate concert presentation utilizing video and lighting to present the cherished material in an immersive multimedia experience.

“I’m in the midst of creating a stunning-looking show, working closely with my lighting director and visual designer. We’re using a Visualizer to play each track to design and run the lighting and videos as if it was a live show right there on our computer screens. It enables us to dial in every little nuance of the music so that each video and light is precisely timed to the music. The detail is really amazing. I am loving the process of creating the production for the tour,” said Culbertson, who will begin ten days of production rehearsals in Nashville with his band in mid-March.

Culbertson’s Colors of Love Tour has already announced 66 shows in 50 cities with more soon to be added to the itinerary. The nationwide trek includes a June 7 performance at Culbertson’s seventh annual Napa Valley Jazz Getaway, a five-day music, wine and lifestyle experience held in the heart of California Wine Country.

“The ‘Colors of Love’ show will be staged in three acts. The first and third acts will showcase the new album along with romance-themed selections from my catalogue. In fact, we’re going to be drawing heavily from my ‘It’s On Tonight’ album,” explained Culbertson. “We’re not planning to do any big horn section pieces during this tour like I’ve done in the past and did extensively during last year’s Funk! Tour, but the second act will be a slamming funk set guaranteed to get everyone up and dancing.”

Joining the keyboardist-pianist-trombone player on tour are drummer Chris Miskel, bassist Joewaun Scott, guitarist Tyrone Chase, keyboardist-vocalist Eddie Miller, and Marqueal Jordan on saxophones, vocals and percussion.

“I asked Marqueal to bring his soprano sax for this tour. The sound fits the intimate ambience of the music we’re going to perform. It’s the first time in over a decade that I’ve used soprano sax in my live show,” said Culbertson, who describes the “Colors of Love” album as “textural ear candy cinematic in nature.”

As Culbertson shares his anniversary and Valentine’s Day gift to his wife with the world on record and during the upcoming tour, expect the architect of 30 Billboard No. 1 singles as an artist, producer and/or songwriter to add to that stat.

For more information, including concert dates, please visit http://www.BrianCulbertson.com.

Source: Great Scott Productions

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Jazz Holdouts – Morning Breeze

 

From night until morning, Jazz Holdouts frontmen Alan Palanker and Lou Cortelezzi have been toiling away in the studio diligently conceiving ultramodern electronic soundscapes to pair with their enticing keyboard and saxophone melodies. Last summer, they came up with a sensual blend of throbbing house music, nocturnal chill nuances and steamy contemporary jazz harmonies on a cut titled “Summer Nights,” which went No. 1 on the Billboard and Mediabase charts. Going downtempo for a laidback oeuvre of sunrise seduction, the duo wrote and produced “Morning Breeze,” the follow-up single that began going for radio playlist adds on Monday.

“‘Morning Breeze’ refers to the urge we often have to make love when we awaken in the morning. It passes over us like a cool breeze on a hot summer day and we make of it what we will,” said Cortelezzi about the inspiration for the new cut. “Our goal is to create instrumental music that is, groove-oriented, atmospheric and contemporary. The more traditional elements that say ‘jazz’ – like improvisation – are secondary to the overall effect of the composition.”

The winning combo of keyboardist Palanker and saxman Cortelezzi have taken Jazz Holdouts in bold directions. The outfit initially formed as an adult R&B/singer-songwriter venture that dropped the debut disc, “Intuition,” in 2014. Scrapping the original concept and recruiting the hornman into the fold, the reimagined Jazz Holdouts premiered their reworked vision in 2016 with the Billboard Top 20 single “Simple Things,” a futuristic foray swirling exhilarating electronica experimentations, dancefloor dynamics and soothing sophisticated sax. All three singles will be on the ten-song album slated for release this summer.

Jazz Holdouts consists of a veteran core of accomplished musicians who have toured and recorded with many of the biggest names in pop, R&B and jazz over the past few decades. On “Morning Breeze,” Palanker and Cortelezzi are joined by guitar ace Michael Thompson, bassist John Siegler and percussionist Walfredo Reyes Jr. Fusion guitarist Jamie Glaser will appear on the album as well.

“Lou and I are the songwriters, but the Jazz Holdouts recording process is unique and technologically current, including valuable contributions from our highly-skilled audio mix engineer, Douglas Cooper Getschal, who is key to shaping our sound,” said Palanker.

After the album is complete, the Jazz Holdouts’ focus will shift to how to present the music live in a compelling multimedia production that stimulates the senses. Cortelezzi said, “We are excited about the possibility of adding extensive video content to our live shows. The combination should be very entertaining to our audience and interesting to us as musicians.”

For more information, please visit http://jazzholdouts.com.

Source: Great Scott P.R.oductions

JESSY J Live

JESSY J Live

Live at Yoshi’s – 10 Year Anniversary Special

 

The CD will be recorded live at Yoshi’s Jazz Club in Oakland, CA on Jan 28th, 2018. This is the celebration of the 10 year Anniversary of Tequila Moon. I’m excited to commemorate this experience with my fans, they have the opportunity to be heard and seen in the Live CD and Videotaping of this exclusive show.

The setlist will feature classics from my catalog over the past ten years including #1 hits Tequila Moon, Tropical Rain, Hot Sauce and brand new material.

Can’t wait for you to hear it soon, to be released Spring 2018

Support this project and visit this website.

Mariea Antoinette – Overture

The dramatic opening immediately commands attention. Emerging from the lab with a preview of her upcoming summer album, urban jazz alchemist Mariea Antoinette returns on January 29 with the jubilant “Overture,” the new single featuring her mystical harp pouring forth as a bubbly protagonist. The divine stringed instrument is cast amidst an intriguing orchestral proscenium both ancient and modern constructed by a nine-piece string section, three-piece horn section and an empowering rhythm track crafted by Emmy winner and two-time Grammy-nominated producer Allan Phillips, who co-authored the composition with Antoinette.

“Overture” is the first original recording from Antoinette since her Phillips-produced “Straight from the Harp,” which was a Billboard Top 5 smooth jazz album in 2015. The new cut demonstrates that her mission to shatter preconceived limitations, stretch and abolish musical borders and boundaries, and expand the possibilities for the harp as a lead instrument in R&B, jazz, funk, soul and rock remains unwavering.

“My goal has been to present the unexpected: to make the harp the lead instrument backed by bass, drums and percussion. I am continuously stretching and pushing the boundaries of the harp, making a clear statement that it possesses a funky and powerful place in contemporary music. The harp is unexpectedly expressive in its delivery, a forceful lead voice and soloist in the midst of it all,” said the San Diego-based Antoinette. Continue reading

Valeriy Stepanov – Happy People

Widely recognized within the genre as a Smooth Jazz highlight of 2017, ‘New Beginnings’ by multi-instrumentalist Valeriy Stepanov not only blasted a path to #1 on the Amazon US chart of best-selling Jazz albums but also proved to be a project that is entirely radio ready. Indeed having already delivered the captivating single ‘Tonight’, the next track headed to the airwaves is the high octane ‘Happy People’. It finds Stepanov really tearing it up on keys (& drums) while the addition of cello from Vsevolod Guzov, coupled with a delicious splash of synth horns, are production masterstrokes that serve as the icing on a very tasty cake.

Prior to ‘New Beginnings’ Stepanov was best known as a YouTube sensation who, to date, can boast over three and a half million Internet views. He enjoys such an online profile that musicians around the world are clamoring to both cover and rework his music. Not only that, he has been recognized as having the ability to traverse the entire spectrum of Jazz, from his Smooth Jazz sensibilities, that are very much the province of ‘New Beginnings’, through to his own brand of fusion that can accurately be described as Chick Corea meets Jeff Lorber.

The story of Valeriy Stepanov, who grew up in Irkutsk, Siberia, close to the Mongolian border, is very much a story of today. He is living proof that in today’s connected world an Internet presence combined with an abundance of talent can propel a performer from the most unlikely of locations into the global spotlight. In fact the original ‘Russian’ title of ‘Happy People’ is  Irkutskrasnoyarsk’, the blending of the names of the two cities where Valeriy and Vsevolod grew up as childhood friends.

What makes Valeriy stand out from the crowd is the superb formula he has for rhythm and melody, his unbounded energy and a technique that is solidly grounded in music theory. ‘New Beginnings’ is a magnificent showcase for his artistry, writing skills, and production know-how, an inspired body of work and an important step on his journey to musical stardom. ‘Happy People’ will be Going for Adds on 01/29/2018

Darryl Williams – Do You Remember

 

It took ten years for urban-jazz bass player Darryl Williams to write, record and release “Here to Stay,” his Billboard top 10 single and the title track to his second album. This week’s release of the follow-up single, “Do You Remember,” proves that he doesn’t plan to go away anytime soon. Plucking rubbery basslines on piccolo and electric basses on the slick jazz-funk energizer that he wrote and produced, Williams is joined on the dancefloor filler by chart-toppers Michael Lington (saxophone) and Adam Hawley (guitarist).

Williams’ return to center stage as a frontman with the “Here to Stay” set resulted in a 2017 Best

New Artist nomination from the Smooth Jazz Network. The first-call bassman calls the collection that he produced with sax powerhouse Euge Groove “a labor of love,” featuring eight of his hand-penned originals along with a pair of remakes that have personal meaning to the San Diego native who currently resides in Temecula. A stellar list of his regular employers were quick to return the favor by making guest appearances on “Here to Stay,” including Groove, who ignites a pair of tunes including the title cut, two-time Grammy-winning guitarist and producer Paul Brown, jazz-funk keyboard pioneer Jeff Lorber, saxmen Marcus Anderson and Elan Trotman, and keyboardists Jonathan Fritzen, Greg Manning and Scott Wilkie. The disc’s lone vocal number, a faithful rendering of The Emotions’ “Don’t Ask My Neighbors,” is soul kissed by R&B crooner Ashling Cole. Williams remembers his late mentor, Carl Evans Jr., by revamping the former Fattburger leader’s sweetly redolent “The Doctor,” which is graced by Michael Paolo’s caressing soprano sax.

“While to some people, ‘labor of love’ is an overused cliché, it certainly applies to ‘Here to Stay.’ I began writing songs for the collection in 2007 before moving my family to Temecula from Las Vegas. The compositions were inspired by different experiences we went through in our journey throughout that period. It was an important and formative time in my career as well. That’s when I first started playing in Euge’s (Groove) band and did a tour with Jeff (Lorber) a couple years later. In between is when my very good friend and mentor Carl (Evans Jr.) passed, which was devastating. ‘Do You Remember’ was one of the last songs I wrote for the record and it was inspired by reflecting on how far I’ve come from growing up as a kid in Los Angeles and San Diego to playing in a funk band with my brother as a teenager. It took me ten years to finish this album and while it takes me back in time, the reaction from fans, radio and reviewers has me looking forward with excitement. I couldn’t be more proud of this album,” said Williams.

Williams was a teenager when he opened for R&B acts Lakeside and Al Green along with gospel legend Shirley Caesar. After studying jazz at San Diego State University, Williams went from regular gigs backing many of San Diego’s most prominent homegrown talent to the neon lights of the Las Vegas strip where he accompanied such nationally-renowned headliners as Clint Holmes, Angela Bofill, Tevin Campbell, Howard Hewett and Keith Washington, and did a road stint with Chaka Khan. After moving back to California in 2008, Williams dropped his debut album, “That Was Then,” garnering praise from JazzTimes and national airplay on SiriusXM. He has become a fixture on the smooth/contemporary jazz scene where he has shared the stage with the genre’s heavy hitters: Richard Elliot, Peter White, Gerald Albright, Mindi Abair, Brenda Russell, Darren Rahn, Jessy J, Everette Harp and Jeff Kashiwa. He has also recorded with Jackiem Joyner, Blake Aaron, Nils Jiptner, U-Nam and Kay-Ta Matsuno.

Source: Great Scott Productions

Dreaming in Colour – Morning Star

A wonderful work of passion: Dreaming in Colour presents their new single Morning Star featuring guest musicians Jeff Lorber and late Chuck Loeb.

Dreaming In Colour is Kevin Ellis (bass), Chris Noonan (drums), Michael Scherer (keyboards) and Steve Wunder (sax). The song was written by Jeff Lorber and Michael Scherer. The single will be released December 26, 2017. The single will be played on Smooth Jazz Buzz, the premium station for exquisite hand-selected smooth jazz pieces.