Our April in studio guest, the sensational pianist and vocalist Sarah McKenzie's brand new album Secrets Of My Heart was featured recently in the American Jazziz Magazine. It received a five star rating in Germany’s HNA newspaper. Sarah’s manager recently emailed me to let me know that this album was very close to entering the JazzWeek radio charts in the United States.
One of the really great things that has happened by doing this program, has been the contacts that I have made. Listeners our much appreciated. A special shout out to some of our far away listeners, Anton in Russia and Chuck down in El Paso. As always I would love to hear from you at firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition to the fine folks at KKRN, there has been an increasing number of people in the music industry that have provided help and material. Some of this music has been a little out of the smooth jazz realm.
For the first part of this show I thought I might provide you with a little taste of some of this musical work before we reach our weekly look at the Billboard top three songs in smooth jazz. Please drop me a line and let me know if you want to hear more from these artists or if you would prefer that I stick only to smooth jazz.
My thanks to Amanda at Crossover Media for the first of these performers. Canadian pianist, composer, and band leader Ron Davis is the founder of SymphRONica, his name Ron is incorporated into that title. This is a creative project that combines jazz, world, groove, pop, and classical music into a mix that pushes boundaries and can be found nowhere else. Last October he released SymphRONica Upfront.
Next I owe thanks to The Sound Of LA for sending this one. French dance and pop music diva Aneessa recently teamed with Motown producer Michael B Sutton on a new version, a cover of Soul II Soul’s song Back To Life. This song is Aneessa’s American debut.
Thanks to Zachary over at Crossover Media for sending me a album just released April 19th. This is from actor, comedian, filmmaker, animator, and singer Seth MacFarlane. As a singer he has performed at Carnegie Hall, has been nominated for four Grammys, hosted the 2013 Academy Awards, and was nominated for best original song for Everybody Needs A Best Friend. His new album is titled Once In A While.
While I am on the subject of contacts, once again I thank Sarah McKenzie for doing that wonderful interview and providing so much terrific music. Also I give special thanks to Burkhard Hopper of B.H. Hopper Management. He manages the career of Sarah McKenzie as well as many other major stars. I had the pleasure of meeting him at the Sarah McKenzie interview. He recently acquainted me with the work of a 21 year old San Francisco up and coming performer Sasha Berliner. She just won the prestigious LetterOne Rising Stars Jazz Award over many stellar candidates. As part of this award she won spots to perform at ten jazz festivals this summer including at San Francisco, the Blue Note in New York and District Of Columbia, Rochester, Monterey, Iowa City, Vancouver, Montréal, and Ottawa. She will also release a new album in September. Burkhard is trying during her tour to fit in an interview with me at our Redding studio. I hope it works out. You will hear more about this young artist in future shows.
For our closing song, I have another classic among classics. This one goes clear back to 1975 for a song long considered to be part of the very origin of smooth jazz. Several artists played on this recording of saxophonist John Klemmer. Most notably we find the keys of Dave Grusin and the guitar of Larry Carleton. This classic among classics is the title track to the album Touch.
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