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New to the Listening Loft

DONALD HAYES | Front Ground | Grindhouse Music

MIKAEL | Grooveology (Prelude) | MikaelMusix Group

DAVID PETROSYAN | Endless Love | DP

DARREN RAHN | Sonic Boom | Woodward Avenue Records

ROB SABADO | Spice of Life | Rob Sabado

R.L. WALKER | From Sunset To Sunrise | R.L. Walker


SmoothJazz.com Hot Picks

Global Force

3RD FORCE Global Force Baja/TSR Records

What a fantastic way to roll out 2016… the Force has truly awakened with the first recording from the compelling contemporary jazz project 3RD Force in more than ten years! Sonic architects, William Aura and Craig Dobbin return with a GLOBAL FORCE. Both artists have spent the past decade involved in musical and cultural endeavors, including global activism through organizations with the mission to bring peace and progress to the world through music. Their exciting and eloquent new release opens a dynamic, new chapter for the duo in a global music paradigm. There was a natural and organic approach taken on GLOBAL FORCE – The concept was to create an album for artistic reward rather than corporate expectations… and the result is extraordinary (amazing how that works). A rich and textured soundtrack for music fans who crave something a little more for their ears than conventional. In addition to juicy rhythms and seductive saxophone, you’ll hear delightful contributions from special guests Lawson Rollins, Brian Hughes and members from the popular Nepali supergroup Kutumba. Download now… and let the Force be with you!

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The Journey

JIM ADKINS The Journey Clear Image Records

Though he’s based in Central Virginia and has won numerous awards from V.O.C.A.L. (Virginia Organization of Composers and Lyricists), guitarist Jim Adkins’ picture perfect melodies, tight snappy pocket grooves and soulful blues and rock influences have been heard all over the world, from the U.S. to Europe to Indonesia and Australia. A popular independent recording artist since the late 1990s, Adkins continues to embrace THE JOURNEY on his infectious and dynamic sixth album, whose tracks include the lively, spirited acoustic-driven “Time With You”; the slick, funked-up electric title track; the whimsical old school R&B flavored “The Secret Place”; and a colorful, improvisation-rich venture “Into the Storm.” The Billboard Song Contest winner also includes a graceful cover of Sade’s “No Ordinary Love,” followed by a spirited blues jam that heralds “A New Horizon.” THE JOURNEY is a passionate, musical adventure you won’t want to miss out on!

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It's All About Love

SYLVIA BENNETT It's All About Love Out of Sight Music

Grammy-nominated jazz singer Sylvia Bennett continues in an exciting new direction with her latest single, "Letting Our Feelings Go." Compelling, contemporary, sensual new music from the Miami-based vocalist. Produced by Sylvia's long-time music partner, acclaimed producer and songwriter, Hal S. Batt, the new song is the follow-up to her 2015 Top 20 hit "Another Love Song," and will be featured on her highly-anticipated, upcoming full album release IT’S ALL ABOUT LOVE. "Letting Our Feelings Go" delivers smooth, night crawling beats that lay the foundation for the artist's desire-filled lyrics... A sweet, burning vocal dance between passionate words and an intoxicating guitar groove. Sylvia Bennett combines her excitement for song with her devotion to love and romance in a sexy sonic environment that hits the heart of Smooth Jazz! 

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Letting Our Feelings Go

SYLVIA BENNETT Letting Our Feelings Go Out of Sight Music

Grammy-nominated jazz singer Sylvia Bennett continues in an exciting new direction with her latest single, "Letting Our Feelings Go." Compelling, contemporary, sensual new music from the Miami-based vocalist. Produced by Sylvia's long-time music partner, acclaimed producer and songwriter, Hal S. Batt, the new song is the follow-up to her 2015 Top 20 hit "Another Love Song," and will be featured on her highly-anticipated, upcoming full album release IT’S ALL ABOUT LOVE. "Letting Our Feelings Go" delivers smooth, night crawling beats that lay the foundation for the artist's desire-filled lyrics... A sweet, burning vocal dance between passionate words and an intoxicating guitar groove. Sylvia Bennett combines her excitement for song with her devotion to love and romance in a sexy sonic environment that hits the heart of Smooth Jazz! 

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Nothin' But Groove

DAVE BRADSHAW JR. Nothin' But Groove MOKU Records

Fun, positive, smooth… “Nothing But Groove” is the latest jazzy single from Southern California keyboardist and composer, Dave Bradshaw Jr. This upbeat new hit follows on the heels of his recent summer smash, "Jumpstep," featuring chart-topping saxophonist Darren Rahn, and the title track to his forthcoming release! Bradshaw says of Rahn, “To be able to come out of the gate strong and work with someone of Darren’s caliber is like a dream come true.” The successful sideman, Dave Bradshaw Jr., confidently steps into the spotlight with his own signature sound as he wraps production on the full album, due out in early 2016! Be on the listen for "Nothing But Groove," it'll have you feeling good and moving to the groove in no time!

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Rhythms Of Rio

VANN BURCHFIELD Rhythms Of Rio Independent

Perhaps best known in the saxophone world for setting a new Guinness world record for circular breathing (besting former champ Kenny G), Birmingham based composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist Vann Burchfield launches his career as a solo instrumentalist with an intoxicating, rhythmically inviting and freewheeling exploration of the RHYTHMS OF RIO. The award winning saxophonist created the joyous, buoyant musical escape to Brazil – featuring eight seductive instrumentals and two lush vocals by his wife Teresa – to help overcome the temporary loss of his home due to a natural disaster. Likewise, Smooth Jazz fans going through a time of crisis, and even those just wanting to enjoy some fresh musical sunshine, should hop on down and explore the RHYTHMS OF RIO!

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This Is Where I Wanna Be

SHARON MARIE CLINE This Is Where I Wanna Be Independent

Celebrated and critically acclaimed L.A. based vocal stylist Sharon Marie Cline has released a live album and holiday project in the past, but those were simply prelude to her glorious emergence as a recording artist with this an exquisite and romantic collection that allows her to declare, on the dreamy and sensual, flute spiced title track, one of two lush originals among 10 well chosen interpretations of classics, that “This Is Where I Wanna Be.” Cline’s triumph lies in her effortless breezing from easy swinging (“Happy Talk,” an inspired choice from SOUTH PACIFIC) to Bossa (“Love Dance,” “Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars”) to blues (“You Don’t Know What Love Is”). When you listen, you too will declare, THIS IS WHERE I WANNA BE!

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Soul Searching

MITCHELL COLEMAN, JR. Soul Searching Soul Revelation Music

Emerging bassist Mitchell Coleman may be SOUL SEARCHING on his dynamic and driving debut, but he doesn’t take long to find some tasty, infectious urban jazz and funk grooves. Influenced by greats like Marcus Miller, Stanley Clarke and Larry Graham, the multi-talented musician and composer kicks off the 12 track, two interlude set by stamping a fun and fiery “Passport” to a place filled with buoyant R&B/jazz fusion. While establishing himself as a force to be reckoned with, he also pays homage to Earth, Wind & Fire (a dreamy “That’s The Way of the World” featuring Pam Vincent) and the late great Joe Sample with an eloquent take on “When Your Life Was Low” featuring Dionyza Sutton. There’s plenty of soul in SOUL SEARCHING!

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Back Home

DANCING FANTASY Back Home Dancing Fantasy Music

Back by Fan Demand... European Smooth Jazz and Chillout producers Chris W. Williams and Curtis McLaw have returned to center stage with their 10th album in their 25 year career! Dancing Fantasy started recording on the German electronic label IC Digit in 1990, had an overnight success with their debut album MIDNIGHT BLVD, landing on Billboard's NAC Top 10 Chart with songs like "Cry Nature“ and "Voodoo Jammin'" receiving heavy U.S. radio airplay! Their success continued with critically-acclaimed recordings, including a project for Higher Octave. Followers all over the world continue to support this band, luring them back to the studio recently, to complete this new musical chapter. Chris and Curtis have delivered an exciting, warm atmospheric album that includes irresistible chilled vibes and sexy smooth beats with catchy melodies featuring guitar, trumpet and saxophone. BACK HOME is where their heart is, let the Fantasy begin again!

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Connected

MARK ETHEREDGE Connected Vipaka Records

On CONNECTED, Mark Etheredge deals powerfully with his past issues of feeling disconnected from humanity. The result is a heartfelt, socially conscious collection that uses the joy of music to cut across traditional human barriers. With a deep sense of groove and a compelling mix of lighthearted and deeply emotional melodies, the multi-talented performer creates a lively, diverse and lushly soulful celebration of human connection with world class musicianship – including dynamic interactions with guitarists Chuck Loeb and Paul Brown (the project’s Grammy winning producer) and saxman Andy Suzuki. In addition to clearly reflecting his influences David Benoit and Joe Sample, the veteran sideman complements his contemporary jazz vibe with Latin and bluesy excursions. Start out the New Year by getting CONNECTED!

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Farmer's Vineyard

ETHAN (EBASSMAN) FARMER Farmer's Vineyard Ropeadope

World renowned Chicago bred, L.A. based bassist Ethan “eBassman” Farmer became a behind the scenes musical force touring, writing, producing and recording with Janet Jackson, Lionel Richie, Babyface, Patti Labelle, Christina Aguilera and Darius Rucker, among others. Emerging center stage, he invites jazz, funk, pop and rock fans to groove along on a deep, authentic, passionate journey through FARMER’S VINEYARD, where unexpected musical flavors capture and serenade the senses with each listen. While Prince-like in his big production values and Marcus Milleresque in his bass virtuosity, Farmer’s also focused on picture perfect melodies and just the right amount of smooth – including a taste of sultry romance featuring sax great Boney James. You’ll be harvesting this FARMER’S VINEYARD for a long time!

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Everlasting (feat. Terrence Richburg)

PHIL FRENCH Everlasting (feat. Terrence Richburg) RichEscape Music, LLC

Talk about a divine pairing! On the spiritually empowering, yet jazz-infused EVERLASTING, trailblazing jazz saxophonist Phil French - a former musical director for Grammy winning singer Yolanda Adams – joins forces with vocalist/multi-instrumentalist, producer/songwriter Terrence Richburg, known as the “Quincy Jones of Gospel” for his critically acclaimed solo albums and work with everyone from Richard Smallwood and Aretha Franklin to The Winans, Jennifer Holliday and Gerald Albright. Though their ultimate spiritual goal is a joy filled shout out to the Lord, audiences everywhere can sway and groove along just as easily to this alluring mix of high octane instrumental funk, smooth jazz melodies and dreamy ballads. There are also a handful of beautiful vocal tracks by Terrence and Kathy Richburg. You are sure to be touched by this inspiring collaboration... an EVERLASTING musical connection!

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Casa Groove

AL GOMEZ Casa Groove Shade Records

Smooth Jazz has a new star... check out the uplifting new release from the extremely versatile, Texas-based guitarist Al Gomez, CASA GROOVE on Shade Records featuring all kinds of feel good energy blended into his Smooth Jazz including R&B influences, Neo Soul, Funk, traces of Tejano and killer vocal harmonies, making for a spicy, fresh vibe! Think Santana meets Larry Carlton! The Pecos, Texas native studied music at West Texas State University, Sul Ross State University, and The Recording Workshop of Cincinnati, he also graduated from a two year Master Guitar Certificate Program from Berklee College of Music in Boston! One of the most exciting collections to hit our musical landscape, CASA GROOVE is filled with hooky, original compositions that sound like world-class hits including his latest singles, the infectious, soulful, vocal-infused "Devotion" and the glistening instrumental, "Erica." Al Gomez is in the casa!

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Front Ground

DONALD HAYES Front Ground Grindhouse Music

You've heard him for the past 25 years, as both a musician and an arranger for a proverbial “Who’s Who” in the R&B, Gospel and Pop worlds – including James Brown, Earth, Wind & Fire, Kirk Franklin, Beyonce, Babyface and on recent and current recordings and tours with Robin Thicke. At last, saxophonist Donald Hayes steps out into the FRONT GROUND on his debut album. Drawing on his Gospel and Blues roots, yet locked firmly in the grooving and melodic Urban Jazz pocket, his multi-faceted new album is smooth, melodic and straight from the heart, blending romance and sensuality with sweet funk. Along the way, his silky sax interacts with a list of heavyweight friends, including the late Wayman Tisdale, Marcus Miller and Eric Benet. Here in the FRONT GROUND, Donald Hayes delivers music that is an extension of his life and who he is as a person... a shining light through and through.

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In Too Deep

JAREZ In Too Deep Top Jazz Records LLC

Jarez offers the perfect combination of cool, contemporary and classic in his music. The charismatic saxophonist has a way with writing songs that are filled with emotionally charged verve, and freshly infused swagger; adding a hipness to Smooth Jazz that is appealing to core fans and attracting a youthful new audience! The Vegas-based recording artist and music entrepreneur, merges his jazz influences from legends, John Coltrane, Miles Davis and Charlie Parker, with today’s sound on IN TOO DEEP. The album is drenched with Sweet, sexy sax, along with urbane and urban grooves, compelling melodies and sophisticated runs. A hip hop heart and a jazz soul makes for a unique, commanding signature sound. This latest project is sure to place Jarez in the thick of things musically speaking…In deep, indeed! With more chart-topping hits and live performances guaranteed!

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More Serious Business

JAZZ FUNK SOUL More Serious Business Shanachie Records

After spending time on the road after the release of their self-titled debut Jazz Funk Soul, the superstar trio of Jeff Lorber, Chuck Loeb and Everette Harp booked more studio time, with the goal of capturing their dynamic onstage energy and flow on a follow-up release. The brilliant result may be called MORE SERIOUS BUSINESS, but these legends also have a blast, let loose and jam. Combine Harp’s soaring sax, Loeb’s brilliant inventive guitar and Lorber’s super funky piano, and the result is serious fun – percussive and punchy one minute, sweet and sensual the next. Combined, the three have amassed an incredible 50-plus #1 Smooth Jazz radio hits, including two from their debut as Jazz Funk Soul. There are sure to be a bunch more now that they’re getting down to MORE SERIOUS BUSINESS.

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My Own Skin

KENYA My Own Skin KenyaMJ Music

A fast growing jazz-kissed soul sensation who is artfully wooing a growing base of admirers around the world, Chicago vocalist and songwriter Kenya makes her U.S. debut with MY OWN SKIN – which, upon its early 2015 release in Europe, was a #1 smash on the UK Soul chart for four consecutive weeks. Kenya’s family life and successful career as a clinician and educator delayed her emergence as an artist, but now the multi-talented performer – who counts everyone from Stevie Wonder to Billie Holiday as influences - is quickly finding her niche as a sensual, emotional vocalist sharing what she calls the “many layers…and spaces within me.” Her deep 15 track debut finds her feeling mighty comfortable in MY OWN SKIN.

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Eruption

DANNY KUSZ Eruption Independent

If “Reanimation,” the energetic lead single from saxophonist Danny Kusz’s upcoming album ERUPTION, is any indication of how the rest of the album will stack up, Smooth Jazz fans are in for a wild ride. Featuring the electric guitar crackle of Nils, it’s a high octane blast of funk, sizzle and glorious horn fire – showcasing a fresh, youthful approach to urban jazz/funk. Named “one of the hippest cats in Minneapolis” by Minneapolis/St. Paul Magazine, Kusz – whose versatility has led him to perform with Eric Leeds, Joey DeFrancesco, Root City and Marcus Miller’s saxman Alex Han - creates an explosive hybrid of his major alto influence, David Sanborn and favorite funk-rocker, fellow Minneapolis native Prince. Now that we’ve kicked off the year with some “Reanimation,” Smooth Jazz better get ready for the big ERUPTION!

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Multi-Platinum, Multi-Grammy Nominated Saxophonist/Flautist

NAJEE Multi-Platinum, Multi-Grammy Nominated Saxophonist/Flautist Shanachie Entertainment

Multi-Platinum and Grammy nominated jazz saxophonist and flautist, Najee, celebrates his 30 year anniversary of his Grammy nominated and chart-topping album NAJEE’S THEME! The musical journey continues for the talented Smooth Jazz mainstay, with worldwide touring, performing and recording! Look for a brand new single due out in 2016 from his current release on Shanachie Entertainment, YOU, ME AND FOREVER. Classic, cool, contemporary jazz, Najee remains a fan favorite and our money is on him staying such for another 30 years!

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All In

PIECES OF A DREAM All In Shanachie Records

Already on a roll in 2015 with the release of his solo debut HERE WE GO, composer and pianist James Lloyd gears up to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Pieces of a Dream - the band he co-founded with drummer Curtis Harmon – with the release of the group’s latest Shanachie Entertainment release ALL IN. Discovered in high school and mentored by the late great Grover Washington, Jr., Pieces have been recording since the early 80s and once earned their hometown Philadelphia Inquirer’s praise as “Pioneers of Smooth Jazz.” Jamming with their longtime saxman Tony Watson, Jr., Lloyd and Harmon serve up yet another can’t miss spirited mix of fanciful funk, urban fired Smooth Jazz and gentle late night romance. As they gear up to enter their fifth decade together, the two are truly ALL IN!

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Infinite Chill - The Remix Sessions

LAWSON ROLLINS Infinite Chill - The Remix Sessions Baja/TSR Records

The only thing better than a new Lawson Rollins recording is a Lawson Rollins remix project featuring chilled out versions of his evocative songs, re-imagined for the electronica and downtempo sector of the music scene. Those of us who like to travel and gravitate towards vibey, sultry hangs and inspired concoctions will be all over INFINITE CHILL, a 10 song collection of the critically-acclaimed, world guitarist's most compelling material, fused with beats and moods befitting of an evening in Ibiza! This languid and loungey album features Shahin Shahida (Shahin & Sepehr) and delivers big on allure! INFINITE CHILL - The Remix Sessions promises to transform your listening experience from smooth to tranquil!

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Uptown Jazz

TONY SAUNDERS Uptown Jazz San Francisco Records

Inspired, soulful Bay Area bassist Tony Saunders returns with a sophisticated, jazzy new single, the title track from his forth-coming 3rd album release UPTOWN JAZZ on San Francisco Records. The upbeat, upscale new single puts you in an uptown mood... featuring on horns, Gabriel Mark Hasselbach, Mic Gillete (Tower of Power) and the debut of Paul Hardcastle Jr. The new album from the prolific composer and two-time Emmy award winner, will arrive on the heels of his critically-acclaimed, charting, 2014 release APPALOOSA. "Uptown Jazz" is getting down at radio this fall, prior to the release of his full album! Tony is living out his passion for music, romancing the bass... which is something that his world-famous father, keyboardist Merl Saunders (Jerry Garcia) always expected for him.

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Brighter Day

SHASHATY Brighter Day A.H.I. Records

Inspired by years of on-stage experience with the brightest of stars including Carlos Santana, The Mavericks, Kirk Whalum and Dave Koz. ShaShaty’s own 5-piece band opened for legends the likes of The Bee Gees, Peter Cetera, Gloria Estefan and George Benson! ShaShaty explodes on to the scene with this exciting, fresh sound that is truly original! His A.H.I. Records debut, BRIGHTER DAY is a soul-drenched, smash hit with high energy, sweet and pure saxophone performances with soaring melodies and genre-blending curves. The first single, “Dream Ride” is like a top-down, moonlit drive, while “Let’s Go!” and the title track are upbeat, mood enhancer’s with cool vocal accents and “Late On 91” will soulfully set your spirit free! It’s clear to see why ShaShaty has so many fans around the world… and tons more on the way!

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Overnight Sensation

JOEY SOMMERVILLE Overnight Sensation Jayvox, Inc.

Joey Sommerville is anything but an OVERNIGHT SENSATION! The spectacular jazz trumpeter has been paving a successful road with his distinctive blend of traditional and smooth jazz, hip hop, R&B, and Gospel. His credits include collaborations with a diverse artist and recording roster including the jam band Phish, Cirque du Soleil and Jazze Pha. While the title is a bit tongue-in-cheek, the album OVERNIGHT SENSATION is filled with tasty horn arrangements, feel good grooves, special guests and a handful of surprises including a couple of JS vocals! Guests include guitar legend, Earl Klugh, saxman Elan Trotman, cool trombonist Jeff Bradshaw and fellow Southern gentleman, guitarist Eric Essix on his latest single, "Rebecca Of Birmingham"! Music fans of all persuasions will enjoy discovering Joey Sommerville’s OVERNIGHT SENSATION… it’s loaded with class, elegance and good times!

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From Sunset To Sunrise

R.L. WALKER From Sunset To Sunrise R.L. Walker

With a title like FROM SUNSET TO SUNRISE, saxophonist R.L. Walker sets the tone for some sensual and romantic late night magic on his latest album. Creating easy, laid back grooves behind his passionate dreamy lead horn melodies, he creates the perfect Smooth Jazz chill album, opening doors into a dreamy, atmosphere rich realm full of lush, powerful moods and a relaxing flow. While many artists simply gather a bunch of their best tunes, Walker’s idea was to invite listeners into a deep, memorable experience. Over ten tantalizing tracks filled with sweet soul and passionate emotion, he allows listeners to experience a “Sexy-Saxy” musical escape... FROM SUNSET TO SUNRISE, you’ll have this one on repeat!

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Take Me Higher

AYSHA Take Me Higher Innervision Records

With years of performances on stages with the top artists in urban jazz and a popular radio show on Urban Soul Radio, sensual singer/songwriter Aysha’s career is definitely on the rise. Featuring a mix of soulful originals and lush covers, her latest release TAKE ME HIGHER, on Innervision Records, offers a dynamic showcase for a sexy vocal style she dubs “Smooth R&B with a Jazzy edge.” Joining her ascent to a higher plane in her artistry are Darren Rahn, Najee, Steve Oliver and Eric Darius. Even as you sing and sway along, TAKE ME HIGHER will elevate your soul!

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Legacy

TOM BROWNE Legacy Independent

35 years after trumpeter Tom Browne first electrified the contemporary jazz and soul worlds with his crossover R&B hits “Funkin’ For Jamaica (N.Y.)," and “Thighs High (Grip Your Hips and Move),” he’s still groovin’ it up. His stated goal with the alternately funky, sensual and exotic LEGACY is to impart his own legacy while defying a culture bent on glorifying youth at the expense of their musical predecessors. Fusing past and present, he also showcases two powerhouse emerging vocalists, Joyce San Mateo and Dee Alexander. Browne’s LEGACY is one to cherish!

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Mr. Bonejazz

BUFF DILLARD Mr. Bonejazz Independent

Continuing to glide contemporary jazz to a scintillating new edge, Charlotte, NC based trombonist Buff Dillard infuses his instantly compelling and dazzlingly diverse eighth solo recording MR. BONEJAZZ with deep grooves, soulful seduction and free flowing musical atmospheres. As a high school student, he played with Pieces of a Dream and the Count Basie Band – and his career since includes work with greats best in the pop, R&B, gospel and jazz worlds. He brings all those inspirations together on a set where he balances his ‘bone with violin, sax and organ. If you love your horns funky, you’ll dig MR. BONEJAZZ!

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City Nights

DAVE ERICKSON PROJECT City Nights Independent

Following his similarly cool, unique and soulfully urbane 2013 debut Pinnacle, Denver-based composer/guitarist Dave Erickson – recording with the Dave Erickson Project (DEP) – presents an exciting and colorful master class in musical diversity on the instantly infectious CITY NIGHTS. Alternating between sizzling rock/blues licks and laid back seduction via luminous melodic licks, Erickson keeps the set unpredictable as he leaps from jazz to Latin, R&B and even folk influences. It’s the perfect soundtrack to some fun and romantic CITY NIGHTS!

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Eric Essix's MOVE > Trio

ERIC ESSIX Eric Essix's MOVE > Trio Essential Recordings

Over 20 albums into his multi-faceted career, Birmingham, Alabama native Eric Essix and his alternately crackling and languid electric guitar continue to re-invent contemporary jazz via his soul, funk and down home Southern roots. Offering a mix of infectious covers and provocative originals, Essix stirs up deep grooves and cool moves with his explosive trio (three fifths of his previous band) featuring drummer James “PJ” Spraggins and electric bassist/keyboardist Kelvin Wooten, who is also a Grammy nominated producer. Whether they’re chillin’ or burning, this trio is always on the move!

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Silver

FOURPLAY Silver Heads Up International

There's a distinct sound with this foursome… deep and expansive… a driving energy that is ever present throughout their recordings. No matter the composition, this supergroup delivers a complex chemistry of subtle and organic nuances that has been titillating music enthusiasts for years. Four unique and established talents combine their musical skills to create a synergy that is greater than the sum of it’s parts, and these equal parts add up to an impressive sum! Nathan East, Bob James, Chuck Loeb and Harvey Mason, each acclaimed in their own right, celebrate their 25th Anniversary as an ensemble, with their most wide-ranging and gratifying album to date, SILVER. The bounty is great with 10 brand new tunes that shine brightly! The new collection features Fourplay alumni Lee Ritenour and Larry Carlton, as well as honorary “5th band member,” Kirk Whalum. With silver-themed titles, this new batch of tracks is lustrous from beginning to end! Comradery, fellowship, creativity and skill are the cornerstones of Fourplay… Here’s to the next 25 years!

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A Work In Progress

TOM HAMILTON A Work In Progress Hambone Records

Tom Hamilton may call his spirited and masterfully eclectic contemporary jazz debut A WORK IN PROGRESS, but the veteran world class saxophonist brings to his infectious mix decades of diverse experience. On large and small scales alike, the versatile composer/musician has done it all - from jazz/funk to salsa, blues and rock – and has performed with legends like Natalie Cole, The Temptations and Clark Terry. Now he brings the most cool, soulful, fiery elements of that resume to his masterful in the pocket originals. If this is A WORK IN PROGRESS, you’re gonna love the end result!

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From Here

DERRICK HARVIN From Here Groove Elation Records

Keyboardist/composer Derrick Harvin brings a dynamic resume as an engineer/producer for an all-star array of pop and R&B stars to his emergence as a solo artist with the ultra-melodic, smooth groove driven FROM HERE. He’s worked behind-the- boards magic for 50 Cent, Chaka Khan, Hilary Duff and Natasha Bedingfield. Now he brings that expertise – and his unique ability to interpret his visual inspirations in a deep, heartfelt musical way – to an infectious batch of tunes that ring with the sounds of emotion. SmoothJazz.com Global calls it “Smooth Jazz at it’s finest!” If you’re a fan of Brian Culbertson and Jeff Lorber, you’ll love what you hear on FROM HERE!

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Groove Maker

LOWELL HOPPER Groove Maker Get Jazzed Records

During his 20 year career in the U.S. Air Force, Lowell Hopper performed and recorded with jazz artists in Germany, the Panama Canal and U.S. Over the course of ten albums stretching back to 1993, including his latest release, the perfectly titled GROOVE MAKER, the multi-talented composer, producer and guitarist has built an enthusiastic audience in North Florida with his seductive sounds. He’s carved out a powerful indie niche via his colorful blend of crisp electric guitar, jubilant bass, haunting melodies and fresh beats. Smooth Jazz fans can thank Hopper for his service once more by checking out his smooth collection of soulful jazz and funky grooves, on GROOVE MAKER!

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Everyday People

iREEDMAN & MS. MONÉT Everyday People I Reed Records

The supremely soulful pairing of world-class saxophonist Joel Peskin (iReedMan) and accomplished singer Ms. Monet (featured vocalist with Boz Scaggs) brings together two powerhouse artists with all-star resumes loaded with everything from avant-garde jazz to iconic pop... from Frank Zappa and The Beach Boys to Celine Dion, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw. Their new EP EVERYDAY PEOPLE launches with a supercharged version of the Sly Stone classic – but its diverse slate of smooth R&B and lighthearted old school funk originals is equally dynamic and infectious, with a little sultry thrown in for good measure. This EP is for EVERYDAY PEOPLE who like some deep emotions as they groove!

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Irreconcilable

PAUL KNIGHT Irreconcilable Merchant Murango Records

Though Paul Knight began his musical journey playing sax and flute, one listen to the Toronto based vocalist and performer’s intensely soulful, easy grooving debut single “Irreconcilable” makes it clear that he made the right choice of lead “instrument.” In addition to appearing on three tracks of the R&B City Series 1 CD (featuring the popular Canadian smooth jazz hit “A Second Look”) Knight has provided backing vocals for Earth, Wind & Fire, Glenn Lewis, Devine Brown and Dione Taylor of Soular. “Irreconcilable” is irresistible!

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Still Bill

BILL MCGEE Still Bill 804Jazz

Throughout Bill McGee’s extraordinary, multi-decade musical career, he’s been a music teacher, released seven CDs as owner of 804 Music Group, scored two gold records, worked with Evelyn “Champagne” King, Lou Rawls, The O’Jays and Sugar Hill Gang. The international trumpet man, music producer and educator’s latest multi-faceted jam is a way to let the world know he’s STILL BILL, a soulful, spiritual, jazzy horn guy who still hangs with the top musicians in the business. This Smooth Jazz, cool funk, gospel and blues-infused set features seven infectious originals and four lush re-imaginings of classics by Herbie Hancock, The Stylistics, and Hugh Masekela. He’s STILL BILL and still making the musical magic!

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Grooveology (Prelude)

MIKAEL Grooveology (Prelude) MikaelMusix Group

As a member of the legendary Commodores from 1995-2005, Mikael got to share the stage with legendary R&B icons like Gladys Knight, Stevie Wonder, Isaac Hayes and The Temptations. He’s been moving to center stage in the urban jazz world ever since. The passionate guitarist and composer’s second album GROOVEOLOGY (PRELUDE) has been praised as “flawless” by SmoothJazz.com founder, Sandy Shore. It’s an extraordinary set of Smooth Jazz and R&B moods and grooves, a perfect showcase for the diverse musician’s crisp, funky and fluid electric lead lines and exciting interactions with sax, acoustic piano and dreamy female vocals. From start to finish, you’ll enjoy engaging in the study of GROOVEOLOGY!

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Ivory Soul

JOHN NOVELLO Ivory Soul 529 Music

At the heart of John Novello’s signature sound that’s imprinted on #1 hit songs worldwide is a classic sense of groove and sensuality perfectly captured in the title of his latest collection IVORY SOUL. The multi-faceted keyboardist, arranger and composer, draws on his deep old school jazz, soulful pop and R&B sensibilities for a set that finds him gliding and grooving on acoustic and electric piano, B3 organ, Korg synthesizers and even upright bass. Enhancing the cool, Novello jams with top saxmen Gerald Albright, Eric Marienthal and Tom Scott. Get Novello and get groovin’ with some potent IVORY SOUL!

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Love Divine

ROBERT E. PERSON Love Divine REP Music

In the glorious spirit of other renowned genre “apostles” like Jonathan Butler and Kirk Whalum, Robert E. Person majestically and soulfully blends his multitude of musical talents and deep faith on LOVE DIVINE. It’s a fresh, inspirational, gospel transcending collection that blends traditional, contemporary, urban inspirational and straight ahead jazz. For this empowering award winning vocalist – who has worked with everyone from Josh Groban to George Benson – this album is a natural and exciting extension of his longtime musical ministry. These 12 tracks we will make you believe in LOVE DIVINE!

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Endless Love

DAVID PETROSYAN Endless Love DP

On ENDLESS LOVE, the adventurous follow-up to his debut album GOOD MORNING LOVE, Armenian-born David Petrosyan continues to establish himself as a new front runner in contemporary saxophone jazz. Inspired by his father – who introduced him to the instrument at a young age - and his wife and baby son, Petrosyan complements his smooth, seductive and sleek tone with fresh electronic grooves, lush atmospheres and touches of tropical jazz and edgy jazz-rock fusion. We have fallen into ENDLESS LOVE with David Petrosyan's music and believe you will to!

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Sonic Boom

DARREN RAHN Sonic Boom Woodward Avenue Records

With over 25 #1 radio singles and multiple Grammy nominations as an artist, producer and mixing engineer, Darren Rahn has become Smooth Jazz’s premiere sonic architect. With his fifth solo release, he’s taking his powerhouse melodies, grooves and sax to the next level. Living up to the explosive promise of its title, SONIC BOOM – which the multi-talented musician calls his most “honest and heartfelt” work to date – blasts off with a perfect balance of high octane funk and emotional ballads. Always setting the perfect tone, Rahn surrounds his spirited tenor madness and freewheeling fun with amazing musical guests, including Rick Braun, Jonathan Fritzen, Julian Vaughn, and in addition to famed trombonist Robin Eubanks. Rahn also showcases his talents on piano, vocals, EWI, Hammond B-3 and Fender Rhodes. Your ears will be ringing joyously with this SONIC BOOM!

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City Ways

BERNARD ROSE City Ways Satin Sax Company

After establishing himself as an independent artist in contemporary jazz, gospel, and contemporary Christian music, versatile saxophonist Bernard Rose draws on an exciting mix of urban jazz, jazz fusion and R&B influences for his engaging, groove intensive new Smooth Jazz single, “City Ways.” An Indie Music Channel Award Winner for Best Jazz Recording, the track features a dynamic swirl of jazz, soul, dance and funk music, with a slight Avante Garde twist and spirited vocals describing exciting city scenes. You’ll have fun exploring these “City Ways”!

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Spice of Life

ROB SABADO Spice of Life Rob Sabado

Years ago at the Stanford Jazz Workshop, the legendary Stan Getz took notice of young saxophonist Rob Sabado and said he had “the best tone around.” Now, Sabado delivers big time on that promise with his soulful and gently exotic debut SPICE OF LIFE. Sabado surrounds his warm, intimate tones and flavorful grooves with balmy atmospheres fashioned by Grammy-winning producer Paul Brown, whose distinctive guitar energy plays off Sabado’s lead lines perfectly. Also on hand are bassists Roberto Vally and Daryl Williams, as well as keyboardist Marco Basci, who adds dynamic old school touches. Sabado’s kind of variety is truly the SPICE OF LIFE!

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Songs For Everyone

SLOW Songs For Everyone V Records

SONGS FOR EVERYONE is the latest cool collection from SLOW, the Polish Smooth Jazz duo featuring life long friends, guitarist Tomasz Kaczmarczyk and pianist Krzysztof Werminski. The jazz is fresh, the concept is innovative, and the vibe is smooth European. Thanks in part to this accomplished partnership, Poland is becoming a hub for contemporary jazz in central Europe, with growing interest in this lifestyle music format. SLOW met critical acclaim in 2011 with their debut ART OF SILENCE. Released through the boutique label, V-Records, the compelling 2nd album, SONGS FOR EVERYONE, indeed has a little something for all kinds of music lovers... Smooth Jazz, electronic flavors, even a chamber string quartet and gorgeous female vocals including Jagoda Jahga on the dreamy title track! At your leisure, but make it quick, check out SLOW!

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Musically Speaking

PAUL TUVMAN Musically Speaking Independent

Filled with gorgeously rendered, easy flowing compositions written by pianist Paul Tuvman over the past 30 years, MUSICALLY SPEAKING is more than just a dazzling debut by a thoughtful new Smooth Jazz artist. It also marks the resurrection of his musical dreams after he set them aside to become a successful airline pilot. This pilot’s amazing musical journey involved making some wonderful musical friends – including Rick Braun, who adds simmering horn section harmonies to “Rebecca” and “Inverted.” MUSICALLY SPEAKING, Tuvman’s blend of elegance and funk soars to the heavens!

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