The lovely, sultry siren is already a jazzy, soulful sensation! She is the 2011 winner of 2 Black Music Awards, “Best Neo-Soul Artist” and “Best Urban Soul Artist.” She’s also the 2011 Los Angeles Music Awards winner, and Producer’s Choice for “Jazz Album of The Year”. (Previous Producer’s Choice winners include No Doubt, The Black Eyed Peas, System of A Down and Sugar Ray).
It was once said that, “only passions, great passions can elevate the soul to great things.” This is reflected in the mind, body, soul, and music of Jacnique Harris-Love; known to her fans simply as Jacnique. She is an avid songwriter, pristine vocalist, sensational performer, a runway renaissance woman and a rising star!
For info on EURweb’s Jazzy In July email: [email protected]
The group is comprised of five talented musicians whose melodic compositions produce extraordinary and compelling music.
Currently members of ZOE’ include sax man Reggie Harris, keyboardist Cleveland Belin Jr., drummer David Ferebee, bassist H. Marice Fonville and percussionist/trumpeter Boliver “Chico” Guadalupe. ZOE’s recent project “Let’s Fly” features the late Ron Segers, a gifted guitarist and guiding force for the jazzy quintet.
ZOÉ has performed with or opened for Mindi Abair, Keb Mo, Phil Perry, Jeff Kashiwa, jazz flautist Sherry Winston and numerous notable, inspirational speakers.
ZOÉ has captivated audiences beyond the Philadephia/South Jersey area with their infectious rhythms that roll from smokin’ funk to supremely sensual.
For more info visit www.zoejazz.com.
Experience more of our Jazzy in July series HERE.
*Vivian Male is a jazz vocalist whose debut recording was on the collaborative CD “Boston Sings Out.” Next came Vivian’s first solo CD titled “Our Day Will Come.”
Her exhilarating renditions demonstrate a musical versatility that appeals to audiences of all ages. Over the years Vivian has had the delightful pleasure of working with Walter Beasley, Bill Pierce, Andre Ward and producer/composer Rollins Ross.
New England Patriot fans may recognize Vivian as the frequent chanteuse of the National Anthem at local games.
Vivian’s favorite venue is Sculler’s Jazz Club in Boston. When away from the mic, Ms. Male is a highly recognized governmental official whose specialty is public policy.
Among her numerous affiliations are: the Governor’s Advisory Committee on Women’s Issues, the Middlesex County Chapter of Links, Inc., the Coalition of 100 Black Women of Boston, the Museum of African American History’s Legacy Society and the Berklee College of Music (Vice Chair Emerita), where she co-founded the Sarah Vaughan Endowed Scholarship Fund.
Vivian is the proud mother of a 15-year-old son and a glowing ray of sunshine in the world of jazz.
For info on EURweb’s Jazzy In July email: [email protected]
*Caesar Jazz Balladeer delivers exquisite renditions in four languages that have left audiences around the world in a trance. He has often been compared to the great Nat “King” Cole.
Last month Caesar completed his anticipated debut album, A Tribute to Nat “King” Cole at Capitol Studios in Studio A, using the same microphone and Steinway piano that Nat “King” Cole and Frank Sinatra used in the 1950’s.
Caesar recorded with two of the best engineers in the world, 30 year Capitol vet and 3 time Grammy winner Charlie Paakkari, and Al Schmitt who has won 21 Grammy Awards, and has served as Producer/Engineer on over 150 Gold and Platinum albums including Natalie Cole’s Unforgettable album featuring Nat “King” Cole. Yes, Caesar is in good company!
Currently Caesar is seeking the public’s support to help complete the mastering of the project in time for Grammy consideration. Fans can donate via Kickstarter and assist Caesar in adding his spin on the legacy of the late Mr. Cole, whose widow (Maria Cole) has now also passed away as of July 11, 2012. Caesar extends love to the entire Nat Cole family and wishes to honor his memory and make history of his own with a classic, all star album featuring Peter White, Eric Bloom, John Anter and more. Caesar’s deadline is August 5th.
Click to make a pledge, read Caesar’s story, listen to his music and see pictures of his recording session at Capitol Studios in Studio A http://kck.st/KYRwis
*(New York, NY) – The Essence Festival, now among the largest consumer live events in the nation hosting more than 550,000 annually, is thrilled to announce the all-star, night-by-night lineup of performers from July 2-5 in New Orleans, LA.
In addition, stay tuned next week for a special announcement of a New Orleans fan favorite making a triumphant return to close out Friday night’s tribute to the city with an epic performance on July 3.
The A-list nighttime concerts featuring more than 40 acts will take place across five stages in the Superdome throughout the weekend—on the Festival’s renowned Mainstage and within the intimate Superlounges.
The 2015 Essence Festival night-by-night musical lineup is as follows:
- Thursday, July 2nd – What now? Tour featuring Kevin Hart. Other Mainstage Performances by: Trey Songz and Lecrae.
- Friday, July 3rd – Mainstage: Charlie Wilson, India.Arie, Kem, plus a soon-to-be announced return of New Orleans’ finest. Superlounges:Adrian Marcel, Avery*Sunshine, Doug E. Fresh, Goapele, Kelly Price, Kindred The Family Soul, Luenell, Nico & Vinz and Slick Rick.
- Saturday, July 4th – Mainstage: Usher, Missy Elliott, Erykah Badu, Common, Beenie Man & The Zagga Zow Band. Superlounges:Bilal, Elle Varner, Esperanza Spalding Presents: Emily’s D+Evolution, Kool Moe Dee, Mali Music, Mystikal, Raheem DeVaughn, Sevyn Streeter, Tank and The Bangas and Tonya Boyd-Cannon.
- Sunday, July 5th – Mainstage: Kendrick Lamar, Mary J. Blige, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Floetry. Superlounges: Andra Day, Dee-1, Dumpstaphunk, Eric Roberson, Jeff Bradshaw, Lianne La Havas, Mase, Robert Glasper, SZA, Teedra Moses and Tweet.
- Nephew Tommy from “The Steve Harvey Morning Show” will return as the Mainstage host, with special DJ appearances by Doug E. Fresh, and more surprise guest performances. In addition, special tribute moments will occur throughout the weekend in recognition of the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.
New Orleans Essence Festival Itinerary with Wendell Pierce
Single day tickets go on sale today and are priced starting at $50 per person per night. For more information about ticket sales, accommodations and the latest news about the Essence Festival , visit Essence Festival www.essencefestival.com, join the Festival community: follow us on Twitter @essencefest #EssenceFest and become a fan of 2015 Essence Festival on Facebook.
Sponsors of the 2015 Essence Festival include presenting sponsor Coca-Cola and major sponsors Ford, My Black Is Beautiful, StateFarm, and Verizon; and official media partner MSNBC. Superlounge sponsors include Coca-Cola, Ford and Verizon.
The 2015 Essence Festival™ is executive produced by Essence Festival LLC, a division of Essence Communications Inc. (ECI), and produced by Solomon Group. GeChar is the executive producer of the 2015 Essence Empowerment Experience and Empower U.
*Frank McComb, the former MoJazz and Columbia Records singer who is now among the most successful independent artists in Urban Adult/Contemporary Jazz, is on a hot streak in 2015 with SRO performances in Europe, South Africa and Australia all the way to New York’s legendary The Bitter End Club and Studio City in California where he just played for the first time at Sheila Escovedo’s new club, “The E Spot.”
As McComb continues to prepare new material for “Soulmate: Another Love Story“ – his fall-slated first studio album in five years – he will be showcasing his latest 4-song teaser EP, Soulmate, by bringing his unique hybrid of soul to Rams Head on Stage in Annapolis, Maryland on Sunday, July 19th at 8:30PM.
He will next take part in a benefit concert for Cancer Research Institute at the Howard Theatre in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday July 21st at 8PM.
“The list is long of great musicians that have played Rams Head,” McComb says of the 18 year-old club established in 1997. “Fans have been asking me to play there for years as it is one of their favorite places to experience live music.
And I am honored to play the Howard Theatre to lend hope and support to so many battling cancer, and with the dedicated intention of eradicating this terrible disease.”
The Howard concert will be McComb’s first visit to the venue since being invited by the late, great George Duke to perform for the theatre’s grand reopening event on April 10, 2012.
Joining Frank on both shows will be Crystal Aikin who is enjoying a surge in popularity thanks to being the top prize winner in Season One of BET’s gospel music program ‘Sunday Best’ blessing all with her song, “Even Me.” She will be doing her own set and, though she’s never met Frank before, plans to prepare one duet to make both nights extra special.
Also on the bill at Rams Head is veteran pianist /singer and songwriter Aziza Miller whose single, “The Subway,” is a delightful New York-themed music video. Aziza (who under her married name Linda Williams (maiden name Miller) composed her former employer Natalie Cole’s bossa soul classic, “La Costa” – Natalie wrote the lyrics) brings a zesty presentation under the guise of her new moniker as a leader.
In other Frank McComb news, he just contributed his composition “Signature” to the upcoming CD – You, Me and Forever by contemporary jazz master saxophonist Najee, playing every instrument except sax (of course) and guitar. Come experience the multi-faceted magic of McComb – up close and personal – at Rams Head (July 19) and the Howard Theatre (July 21).
*Since the launch of Playboy magazine in 1953, two elements have been remarkably consistent: the first is the celebration of the world’s most beautiful & desirable women and the second is its involvement with music. The Playboy experience was never just about sex—it was about lifestyle. And music—particularly the finest jazz, a personal passion of Hefner’s—has always been an essential component of that lifestyle.
While many books have been written about the Playboy organization and the ultimate playboy himself, Hugh Hefner, no book—until this one—has focused specifically on Playboy and the music scene, its impact on popular entertainment (and vice versa), and the fabulous cadre of performers who took to the stages of the mythic Playboy Clubs and Jazz Festivals. Patty Farmer’s “Playboy Swings“ is a groundbreaking look at Playboy through a new lens: music.
In addition to its renowned coverage of music in the magazine, Playboy began to sponsor a series of historic jazz festivals, starting with the groundbreaking 1959 Playboy Jazz Festival in Chicago celebrating the magazine’s 5th Anniversary.
Twenty years later in 1979, Hef enlisted George Wein, the world’s most famous jazz impresario, to help him revive the Playboy Jazz Festival at perhaps the most famous music venue in the world: The Hollywood Bowl. This annual event continues to this day, attracting legendary stars, tens of thousands of ticket-buyers and employing the talents of thousands of musicians.
It was the success of that inaugural jazz festival that gave birth to the idea of the Playboy Club which opened its first doors in Chicago on February 29, 1960. And once the clubs took hold, it was only natural that they would offer live performances featuring the sort of music the magazine endorsed. As much as anything—including the clubs’ iconic Bunnies—the music presented at the clubs set the tone of the organization and kept patrons coming back for more.
From the first issue of the magazine, music enjoyed pride of place, and by 1957, Playboy had launched its “All Star Poll,” in which readers were invited to vote for their favorite musicians and acts. This led to what was, at the time, a rather bold step for the young company: Playboy began to produce records. Now, Playboy was doing more than discussing or reviewing music; it was actually presenting it.
Two months after that first Jazz Festival in October 1959, Hefner launched his first TV project, Playboy’s Penthouse, and all the top-notch performers and musicians dropped by. Comics made the scene as well, including the legendary Lenny Bruce on the very first show. A later foray into television, Playboy After Dark (1968), was no less welcoming to the artists of the day. This time, traditional pop singers such as Vic Damone and Johnny Mathis shared the bill with the likes of Ike and Tina Turner and Sonny & Cher.
At its peak, Playboy was the largest employer of talent in the country.
The Playboy Clubs reached their apogee in the mid-to-late 1960s, and nothing like the wide-ranging Playboy “circuit” for entertainers had been seen since the Golden Age of VaudevilleBy the time the clubs began losing momentum in the late ‘70s, Playboy had spent several decades shaping American musical taste and cultural values.
While music may not be the first thing you think of when you hear the word Playboy, it should certainly be in the top two—and “Playboy Swings” is meant insure that. Compiled with the cooperation of hundreds of people
who were on the scene throughout Playboy’s rise, fall, and renaissance, “Playboy Swings” carries readers on a seductive journey through the history of the empire—all the while focusing on the entertainment that made it unique.
Featuring candid, in-depth interviews with a multitude of musicians and singers, as well as those involved behind the scenes, the book moves from the inception of the Playboy Empire through the 1959 jazz festival, to the opening of club after club. Throughout the book, it is the artists who do most of the talking—and they have a lot to say about the golden era of
Playboy entertainment. The result is a fresh take on one of the great social and cultural institutions of our time, as well as a unique first-person history of American popular performance in the second half of the 20th century.
“Playboy, (Hef), has been a good friend to music in general, but especially jazz. We need him again!”—Al Jarreau
“You weren’t taken seriously if you didn’t have a Playboy key!” “Hugh Hefner didn’t care if you were black, white or purple, only if you were funny or could sing.”—Dick Gregory
“God Bless the Playboy Clubs and Hugh Hefner, they made Gregory, Dad and myself stars!”—Maurice Hines
Now, in the 21st century, the clubs are starting to come back to life. There’s a new second-generation London Club, which opened in 2011, that is packing them in nightly and a new generation is discovering the magic and legend of the Playboy mystique.
*(New York, NY) Miles Davis’ 20-year association as an artist at impresario George Wein’s renowned Newport Jazz Festival is a thriving tradition that will be celebrated with the release of Miles Davis at NewPort Debut with Musical Tributes, Workshops and more.
Newport Jazz Festival to be held July 31-August 2 celebrates the Iconic Trumpeter’s Relationship with the Legendary Newport Jazz Festival and Its revered founder-impresario George Wein, Commemorating the 60thAnniversary Of Miles’Newport Debut With Musical Tributes, Workshops and more.
Miles Davis at Newport 1955-1975: The Bootleg Series Vol. 4. 296-minute program includes nearly four hours of previously unreleased material.
The four-CD box set, comprised of live performances by Miles’ stellar band lineups in 1955, 1958, 1966, 1967, 1969, 1971, 1973, and 1975, in Newport, Rhode Island, New York City, Berlin, and Switzerland, will be the lynchpin for a 60th anniversary commemorative weekend of events at this summer’s annual Newport Jazz Festival (July 31, August 1 & 2).
Ahead of the festival, Miles Davis at Newport1955-1975: will be available everywhere on Friday, July 17 — 60 years to the date since Davis’ breakthrough performance at Newport in 1955 — through Columbia/Legacy Recordings, a division of Sony Music Entertainment.
An interview with Newport Jazz Festival founder-impresario, George Wein, discussing his relationship with Miles Davis, can be viewed below:
George Wein discusses Miles Davis and the Newport Festival
Fans are now able to pre-order the 4-CD set bundled with a poster exclusively from MilesDavis.com (http://smarturl.it/miles_newport_d2c ). The set is also available for pre-order on Amazon (http://smarturl.it/miles_newport_amzn).
The newest entry in Columbia/Legacy Recordings’ critically-acclaimed Miles Davis Bootleg Series, Newport 1955-1975 clocks in at 296 minutes, nearly four hours of which is previously unreleased.
From Miles’ debut performance at NJF in 1955 (a hastily arranged jam session featuring Thelonious Monk and Gerry Mulligan, that immediately led to the trumpeter’s Columbia signing), to his final public performance of the ’70s in 1975 (at Lincoln Center during NJF-NY, the singular “Mtume” named for Miles’ favored percussionist of that decade), the box set traces the ascendance of Miles’ music as the ne plus ultra of jazz.
The full-length concert performances alone of Miles’ famed “Kind Of Blue” Sextet (with Cannonball Adderley, John Coltrane, Bill Evans, Paul Chambers, and Jimmy Cobb), and ‘second great quintet in ’66 and ’67 (with Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, and Tony Williams) represent templates that reverberate in jazz and popular music to this day.
In that spirit, George Wein, who at age 89 still guides the Newport Jazz Festival, will preside over this summer’s Miles-centric gathering, July 31, August 1 & 2.
The lineup includes a cadre of bands led by trumpet stars Ambrose Akinmusire, Chris Botti, Peter Evans, Jon Faddis, Tom Harrell, Arturo Sandoval, and Bria Skonberg.
In a rare, historic tribute, Botti, Evans, Faddis, Harrell, Sandoval and Skonberg will perform one Miles Davis number during their sets.
The festival weekend will feature a number of exciting panel discussions focusing on Miles Davis, created in conjunction with the Miles Davis Estate and curated by Grammy Award®-winning music historian Ashley Kahn.
Highlights include an interview with George Wein conducted byNew York Times critic Nate Chinen (co-author of Wein’s autobiography Myself Among Others: A Life In Music); a celebration of Miles and the St. Louis trumpet tradition with excerpts from the Clark Terry documentary Keep On Keepin’ On (produced by Quincy Jones); and a discussion of Miles’s romance with electric guitars.
There will also be a playback of music from the new Columbia/Legacy Recordings box set Miles Davis Bootleg Series, Newport 1955-1975 with co-producer of the collection—Grammy Award®-winning producer Steve Berkowitz and consultant Nell Mulderry.
Kahn penned the liner notes to this set, noting how Miles’s historic performances at the Newport Jazz Festival never failed to “show the trumpeter repeatedly rising to the occasion, delivering groundbreaking music every time he hit the Newport stage.”
In this symbiosis, George Wein employed Miles to make Newport great, and Miles obliged by bringing some of the post-modern jazz era’s paramount musicians to the festival stage in his bands.
The Newport Jazz Festival (and starting in 1959, Wein’s Newport Folk Festival) enabled audiences of 10,000 to dig the music in a surprisingly intimate setting, where you really could hear a pin drop. “When Miles played his solo on ‘Round Midnight’,” Wein remembers of that breakout 1955 jam, “he put his horn right up to the microphone, which trumpet players didn’t do.
Normally they like to get some air and play a little bit away from the mic but he put the bell of his horn right up against it, and it came through clear as a bell.”
In that moment, with that simple move, Wein states, “That’s when he became the star of the festival and later [Columbia Records A&R man] George Avakian went up and signed him.”
With his “ecumenical” music mix in these five- and six-hour programs – from traditional to bop, hard bop, and re-bop, from cool, modern and post-modern to jazz-rock, rock-jazz, blues and R&B – the contemporary music festival was sired by George Wein.
As Kahn affirms, Wein “swayed generations of festival producers and impresarios – from groundbreaking one-offs like the Monterey International Pop Festival in 1967 and Woodstock in 1969, all the way up to today’s genre-blending annuals like Coachella and Bonnaroo, [and in Europe] Glastonbury and Montreux.”
Intrinsically and inextricably linked at the hip were Miles Davis and George Wein, from the first conversation Wein recalls with the trumpeter in 1952, at a little club in New Haven, “when [Miles] was playing with a band that Symphony Sid had put together with Percy Heath and Milt Jackson,” Wein clearly recalls.
Twenty years or so later, he memorably amped up the 1969 NJF program with Led Zeppelin, the Mothers of Invention, Jeff Beck, Sly and the Family Stone, and others.
Miles was just six weeks away from recording the principal sessions for his all-time game-changing “Bitches Brew,”and his live band had replaced Hancock, Carter and Williams with Chick Corea, Dave Holland, and Jack DeJohnette.
With more electronic instrumentation, and broader drum patterns, Miles was quickly moving beyond the very jazz styles he had helped to create and popularize.
Into the ’70s, rock and R&B-rooted musicians like guitarists Pete Cosey and Reggie Lucas, electric bassist Michael Henderson, Mtume on percussion, plus jazz drummer Al Foster and a rotating cast of saxophonists came aboard. As Miles’ scope expanded, Wein’s festival became a week-long affair in Manhattan, then across Europe.
But to eyewitnesses, Newport Jazz Festival 1969 was ground zero, the big bang that informed “Bitches Brew.” “I remember that Miles always came to Newport and left as fast as he could,” Wein told Kahn.
“In ’66, he came up in a boat and got to the stage in time to play, and was back on the boat and got the hell out of there. In ’69, he stayed from the first day to the last, standing right by my shoulder… He watched every group and watched the response of the audience, who got the most applause, what music they were playing. He was studying. And that affected all the last years of his career.”
Miles Davis at Newport 1955-1975: The Bootleg Series Vol. 4. was produced for release by the multiple Grammy Award®-winning trio of Richard Seidel and Michael Cuscuna; with co-producer Steve Berkowitz. Executive producers for the Miles Davis Estate were Cheryl Davis, Erin Davis and Vince Wilburn, Jr. The music was mastered by Mark Wilder and Maria Triana at Battery Studios in New York City. All original concerts were produced by George Wein.
Miles Davis at Newport 1955-1975: The Bootleg Series Vol. 4. (Columbia/Legacy Recordings 88875081952)(All tracks previously unreleased, except where otherwise indicated)
CD 1: (July 17, 1955: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 1. Spoken Introductions by Duke Ellington and Gerry Mulligan • 2. Hackensack • 3. ’Round Midnight (previously released) • 4. Now’s The Time •
(All-Star Jam Session: Miles Davis, trumpet; Zoot Sims, tenor saxophone; Gerry Mulligan, baritone saxophone; Thelonious Monk, piano; Percy Heath, bass; Connie Kay, drums.)
(July 3, 1958: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 5. Spoken Introduction by Willis Conover (previously released) • 6. Ah-Leu-Cha (previously released) • 7. Straight, No Chaser (previously released) • 8. Fran-Dance (previously released) • 9. Two Bass Hit (previously released) • 10. Bye Bye Blackbird (previously released) • 11. The Theme (previously released) .
(Miles Davis, trumpet; Cannonball Adderley, alto saxophone; John Coltrane, tenor saxophone; Bill Evans, piano; Paul Chambers, bass; Jimmy Cobb, drums.)
CD 2: (July 4, 1966: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 1. Gingerbread Boy • 2. All Blues • 3. Stella By Starlight • 4. R.J. • 5. Seven Steps To Heaven • 6. The Theme / Closing Announcement by Leonard Feather.
(July 2, 1967: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 7. Spoken Introduction by Del Shields • 8. Gingerbread Boy • 9. Footprints • 10. ’Round Midnight • 11. So What • 12. The Theme/Closing Announcement by Del Shields
(1966 & 1967: Miles Davis, trumpet; Wayne Shorter, tenor saxophone; Herbie Hancock, piano; Ron Carter, bass; Tony Williams, drums.)
CD 3: (July 5, 1969: Newport Jazz Festival, Newport, RI)
Selections: 1. Miles Runs The Voodoo Down (previously released) • 2. Sanctuary (previously released) • 3. It’s About That Time / The Theme (previously released) .
(Miles Davis, trumpet; Chick Corea, electric piano; Dave Holland, bass; Jack DeJohnette, drums.)
(November 1, 1973: Newport Jazz Festival In Europe, Berlin)
Selections: 4. Spoken Introduction by Ronnie Scott/Band Warming Up • 5. Turnaroundphrase • 6. Tune In 5 • 7. Ife • 8. Untitled Original • 9. Tune In 5/Closing Announcement by Ronnie Scott
(Miles Davis, trumpet, organ; Dave Liebman, soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone, flute; Pete Cosey, guitar, percussion; Reggie Lucas, guitar; Michael Henderson, electric bass; Al Foster, drums; James Mtume Forman, percussion.)
(July 1, 1975: Newport Jazz Festival – NY, Avery Fisher Hall)
Selection: 10. Mtume.
(Miles Davis, trumpet, organ; Sam Morrison, tenor saxophone; Pete Cosey, guitar, percussion; Reggie Lucas, guitar; Michael Henderson, electric bass; Al Foster, drums; James Mtume Forman, percussion.)
CD 4: (October 22, 1971 : Newport Jazz Festival In Europe, Neue Stadthalle, Dietikon, Switzerland)
Selections: 1. Directions • 2. What I Say • 3. Sanctuary • 4. It’s About That Time • 5. Bitches Brew • 6. Funky Tonk • 7. Sanctuary.
(Miles Davis, trumpet; Gary Bartz, soprano saxophone, alto saxophone; Keith Jarrett, electric piano, organ; Michael Henderson, electric bass; Ndugu Leon Chancler, drums; Don Alias, percussion; James Mtume Forman, percussion.)
*For this holiday single Kenya had the honor of working with an amazing young and emerging producer named Estuardo Galeno Stapleton based in Nashville, TN.
The musicians on the song include Dre Williams on bass guitar, Justin Abraham on drums, and Estuardo on keys. Sit back and enjoy the sounds of Kenya’s re-definition of the popular / classic ballad “Little Drummer Boy.”
About Little Drummer Boy
“I’ve always enjoyed “Little Drummer Boy” and think the lyrics are quite profound…basically the song is saying in the eyes of a higher power, we are enough. Our gifts may seem simple, but they are enough and uniquely designed as ours to give.” – Kenya
The holiday season is a time where connection to family, friends, self and spirit are truly honored and celebrated.
Catch Kenya, in Europe touring as a part of the “Soul City Tour” performing in Amsterdam, Paris, and various cities in the UK during the Thanksgiving holiday through early December (more info at www.kenyamjmusic.com/shows-appearances).
Miles Ahead – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack will be available Friday, April 1. A cinematic exploration of the life and music of Miles Davis, the movie feature “Miles Ahead” marks the directorial debut of Don Cheadle, who co-wrote the screenplay (with Steven Baigelman) and stars as the legendary musician in the film.
Miles – OriginalMotion Picture Soundtrack is available now for digital pre-orders via iTunes – http://smarturl.it/Miles_Ahead_iTunes.
Everything’s Beautiful reimagined interpretations of Miles Davis’ music produced by Grammy Award winner Robert Glasper (who also served as coproducer of the Miles Ahead soundtrack) with musical guest artists including Bilal, Illa J, Erykah Badu, Phonte, Hiatus Kaiyote, Laura Mvula, KING, Georgia Ann Muldrow, John Scofield and Ledisi, and Stevie Wonder.
A visionary exploration of the music of Miles Davis, Everything’s Beautiful incorporates Davis’ original recordings into new collaborative soundscapes and will be available Friday, May 27 (the day after Miles’ 90th birthday).
The Miles Davis track featuring Bilal “Ghetto Walkin”, from the upcoming release Everything’s Beautiful , premieres today for the first time during Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 show on Apple Music.
Everything’s Beautiful is also available now for digital pre-orders via iTunes – http://smarturl.it/Davis_Glasper_iTunes.
Both releases are also available for pre-order at the official Miles Davis store on milesdavis.com.
Miles Ahead – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack explores the breadth and depth of Miles Davis’ musical innovations, combining 11 highlights from the legendary trumpeter/composer/bandleader’s Prestige and Columbia Records catalogs with original new compositions written and performed by Grammy Award-winning jazz/hip-hop artist Robert Glasper.
Select new tracks on the soundtrack album include guest appearances by Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, rapper Pharoahe Monch and more. Both the CD and LP packages for Miles Ahead – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack feature revelatory new liner notes penned by Don Cheadle.
“We culled the library for every style Miles touched…looking for cues to bridge key moments, bring others into focus. The stuff a good score is supposed to do. Miles made it easier. His music is multi-faceted and score friendly,” wrote Cheadle in his notes.
For new and future fans, Miles Ahead – Original Motion Soundtrack provides an ideal introduction to the music of Miles Davis. For seasoned aficionados of the influential 20th century musical pioneer, the album and film provide fresh perspectives and new insights into Miles’ transformative musical and cultural genius.
Miles Ahead- Original Motion Soundtrack features 11 essential tracks spanning 1956 to 1981, select dialogue from the film featuring Cheadle in character, and five original compositions written, co-written, produced or performed exclusively for Miles Ahead by Robert Glasper.
These include “What’s Wrong with That?” (a jam that closes the movie imagining Cheadle as Miles playing in the present day with guest performers Glasper, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Gary Clark, Jr. and Esperanza Spalding and Antonio Sanchez) and “Gone 2015,” an end-credits song featuring guest verses from rapper Pharoahe Monch.
The 2016 SXSW Festival in Austin, TX will premiere the long-awaited, critically acclaimed feature film “MILES AHEAD” on Wednesday, March 16th at 8:00pm at The Paramount Theatre.
A special “Miles Ahead” panel led by Don Cheadle, with NPR’s Felix Contreras onboard as Moderator, will discuss the making of the film, along with the music, with intimate behind-the-scenes anecdotes provided by Erin Davis (son of Miles) and Vince Wilburn, Jr. (nephew of Miles).
Additional panelists include Robert Glasper, who scored the film’s soundtrack; Oscar-winning supervising sound editor, re-recording mixer and sound designer Skip Lievsay; and Keyon Harrold, a sought out trumpeter/producer/arranger/songwriter who performs with Grammy-winning group D’Angelo and The Vanguard, and is featured as the trumpet sound of Don Cheadle playing Miles Davis.
The panel will take place on Thursday, March 17 at 12:30pm in ACC Room 18ABC, and will be open to Music, Film, Platinum and Gold badges, as well as Showcasing Artist wristbands.
Miles Ahead Film Trailer
Everything’s Beautiful is beautifully crafted collection produced by Robert Glasper, blending a diverse group of master takes and outtakes from across the incomparable Miles Davis Columbia catalog with an impressive lineup of contemporary artists and musicians to create original interpretations.
“I didn’t want to do just a remix record,” Glasper noted when discussing the 11-song set. “My idea was to show how Miles inspired people to make new art.”
Realizing that “Miles didn’t have one audience,” Glasper recruited a legion of diverse guest artists to add to the magic of the project including familiar collaborators like R&B musicians Erykah Badu, Ledisi, Bilal and King.
They are joined by British soul singer-songwriter Laura Mvula; hip-hop producer Rashad Smith; Grammy-nominated Australian neo-soul quartet Hiatus Kaiyote, rapper/singer Phonte, rapper/producer Illa J; jazz guitarist John Scofield, who was in Miles Davis’ band; and the legendary Stevie Wonder.
“I am living in the spirit of Miles when I am doing what I’m doing because I am documenting my time period. I’m documenting what’s around me. I’m documenting who I am now, where music is now,” notes Glasper.
“That’s what this project is about. I wanted to do something where we can take some of Miles’ ideas, shake them up, and try to show the influence of Miles and make new things. And that’s the beauty of this whole album.
The whole project is based on Miles, but it is based on Miles’ vision, it’s based on Miles’ trumpet, it’s based on Miles’ voice, it’s based on Miles’ composition, it’s based on Miles’ influence, it’s based on Miles’ swag.”
Miles Davis is a rarity: a pioneering superstar who was constantly voyaging into new directions and genres with an ever changing cast of collaborators.
Throughout his discography, sweeping change and innovation could happen based on who was in the studio and what they brought to his stunning musical vision.
Few American artists have impacted popular music and culture in as broad and long-lasting a way as he did.
By similar design, pianist/producer Robert Glasper has built a career out of a vibrant fusion of R&B, jazz and hip-hop. As the leader of the acoustic Robert Glasper Trio and the electronic Robert Glasper Experiment, he’s pushed the boundaries of each genre he works in to their breaking point.
This is the artist whose album, In My Element (2007), featured mashups of Herbie Hancock and Radiohead and tributes to rapper/producer J Dilla.
2013’s acclaimed Black Radio featured collaborations with Erykah Badu, Ledisi, Lupe Fiasco, Yasiin Bey and other artists. Black Radio was also capped by a sprawling cover of Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and won a Grammy Award for Best R&B Album.
Most recently, Glasper scored for Miles Ahead, the Miles Davis film directed by and starring Don Cheadle.
is unlike any other in Davis’ discography. From the familiar (riffs and passages within the catalog) to the obscure (samples of Miles’ in-studio instructions spoken after false starts), Glasper has built something unique but still unquestionably Miles.
The cover art was created by Francine Turk and integrates elements of Miles Davis’ artwork. With the cover, Turk creates a visual that is similar to the idea of Robert Glasper taking fragments of Miles music and reinterpreting in a unique and modern way.
About Miles Davis
Born Miles Dewey Davis III on May 26, 1926 in Alton, Illinois, Miles grew up in East St. Louis, first learning trumpet at age 13. Graduating high school, he moved to New York in 1944 to study at the Juilliard School of Music, developing chops in technique and music theory before leaving Juilliard to become a full-time player on the New York jazz circuit, cutting his first records in 1945.
One of the most revolutionary and influential musicians and recording artists of the 20th century, Miles Davis was in the vanguard of virtually every phase of the evolution of post-WWII American jazz, from be-bop to cool jazz to hard-bop to modal to the radical rock-funk-fusion which got him inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006.
Miles Davis died on September 28, 1991, leaving the world an extensive catalog of unprecedented music that’s forever timeless and groundbreaking.
Trumpeter, bandleader and composer Miles Davis fronted some of the most formidable and adroit ensembles in musical history.
Miles was the rarest of artists: an uncompromising avant-garde visionary, and transformative cultural icon (with a larger-than-life persona), who achieved both critical and commercial success.
In 2008, Davis’s 1959 masterpiece, Kind of Blue, was certified 4x platinum, solidifying its position as the top-selling jazz album of all-time. In December 2009, the United States House of Representatives passed a resolution on Kind of Blue’s 50th anniversary “honoring the masterpiece and reaffirming jazz as a national treasure.”
Since 1960, the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) has honored Miles Davis with eight Grammy Awards, a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, and three Grammy Hall of Fame Awards.
Over the past twenty years, Miles and his music have been commemorated on a variety of critically-acclaimed box sets released through Columbia/Legacy, many of them winning Grammy Awards, charting in the Top 4 of the Billboard Jazz Album charts, and earning Jazz Reissue of the Year and other accolades in Down Beat magazine’s Critics and Readers polls, among other accolades.
In September 2011, Columbia/Legacy launched the Miles Davis Bootleg Series with the release of Live In Europe 1967: The Bootleg Series Vol. 1. Miles Davis At Newport 1955-1975: The Bootleg Series Vol. 4 won JazzTimes’ Readers Poll for 2015 Best Historical/Vault/Reissue, the fourth time that a box set in the critically-acclaimed, best-selling Bootleg Series topped the JazzTimes Readers Poll in this category.
The set won the 2016 NAACP Image Award in the Outstanding Jazz Album category.
Each of the first three releases in the Bootleg Series–Miles Davis Quintet – Live In Europe 1967: The Bootleg Series Vol. 1, Miles Davis Quintet – Live In Europe 1969: The Bootleg Series Vol. 2, and Miles At The Fillmore – Miles Davis 1970: The Bootleg Series Vol. 3–took home Best Historical/Vault/Reissue from JazzTimes readers.
Miles Davis At Newport 1955-1975 was honored as the Reissues/Archive Album of the Year by the 2015 Jazzwise Albums of the Year Critics Poll. In previous years, the Miles Davis Bootleg Series Vol. 2 and Vol. 3 have won in this category.
Miles Ahead – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
- Miles Ahead
- Dialogue: “It takes a long time
3. So What
- Taylor Made – Taylor Eigisti
- Dialogue: “Listen, you talk too goddam much
- Solea (excerpt)
- Seven Steps To Heaven (edit)
- Dialogue: “If you gonna tell a story
- Nefertiti (edit)
- Frelon Brun
- Dialogue: “Sometimes you have these thoughts
- Duran (take 6) (edit)
- Dialogue: “You own my music
- Go Ahead John (part two C)
- Black Satin (edit)
- Dialogue: “Be musical about this shit
- Prelude #II
- Dialogue: “Y’all listening to them
- Junior’s Jam – Robert Glasper, Keyon Harrold, Marcus Strickland
- Francessence – Robert Glasper, Keyon Harrold, Elena Pinderhughes
- Back Seat Betty (excerpt)
- Dialogue: “I don’t like the word jazz
- What’s Wrong With That? – Don Cheadle, Robert Glasper, Gary Clark, Jr., Herbie Hancock, Keyon Harrold, Antonio Sanchez,Esperanza Spaulding,Wayne Shorter
- Gone 2015 – Robert Glasper, Keyon Harrold, Pharoahe Monch
(*) from the soundtrack of the film, Don Cheadle as Miles Davis
All other tracks performed by Miles Davis, except where noted
Soundtrack album produced by
Don Cheadle, Steve Berkowitz, Ed Gerrard & Robert Glasper
Soundtrack Executive Producers:
Don Cheadle, Erin Davis, Darryl Porter &, Vince Wilburn
- “Talking Shit”
- “Ghetto Walkin” featuring Bilal
- “They Can’t Hold Me Down” featuring Illa J
- “Maiysha (So Long)” featuring Erykah Badu
- “Violets” featuring Phonte
- “Little Church” featuring Hiatus Kaiyote
- “Silence Is The Way” featuring Laura Mvula
- “Song For Selim” featuring KING
- “Milestones” featuring Georgia Ann Muldrow
- “I’m Leaving You” featuring John Scofield and Ledisi
- “Right On Brotha” featuring Stevie Wonder
* Music Festival – QLZ Productions, LLP will provide tickets and accommodations for the annual, Cincinnati Music Festival (www.qlzproductions.com), to be held on Friday, July 22nd and Saturday, July 23rd, 2016 at Paul Brown Stadium in the heart of downtown Cincinnati, Ohio.
The Cincinnati Music Festival is one of the nation’s most highly-anticipated two-day R&B music festivals, attracting local and regional guests from across the Midwest.
Each year, the festival draws a wonderful mix of Old School and the hottest contemporary R & B music performers to its stage.
The first day of the festival begins at 7:30 p.m., on Friday, July 22nd with the following line-up:
2016 Music Festival Line-Up (Day 1)
* New Edition – The hit making teen pop group that evolved into a mature R&B vocal act.
* Babyface – GRAMMY® Award winning R&B singer, songwriter, record producer,
* Fantasia – American Idol winner, R&B soul singer
* The Whispers – One of the world’s most gifted, one-of-a-kind premier vocal groups.
* Judith Hill – GRAMMY® Award winning singer and songwriter
The 2nd day of the festival begins at 7:30 p.m., on Saturday, July 23rd with the following line-up:
2016 Music Festival Line-Up (Day 2)
* Charlie Wilson – Grammy-nominated R&B singer-songwriter
* Maze f/ Frankie Beverly – an American soul / quiet storm band,
* Ledisi – an American R&B and jazz recording artist, songwriter and actress
* Leela James – American R&B and soul singer-songwriter
* The Deele – an American band from Cincinnati, Ohio
Ticket prices range from $55 and up. For updates and/or to purchase tickets, visit www.qlzproductions.com or email:[email protected]com
The Festival History
The Cincinnati Kool Jazz Festival is referred to as the granddaddy of them all. It is one of the oldest running music festivals in North America.
The festival began in 1962 at Carthage Fairgrounds, with a pure jazz format. The early years of the Festival was met with international acclaim. It featured such greats as master trumpeter, Miles Davis, Al Jarreau, Grover Washington, Jr., George Benson, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and The Spinners.
The festival soared in popularity, and the public demanded more. The event promoters, Dino & Joe Santangelo of Cincinnati, and their partner J. Lee Freidman of Atlanta, decided to meet the public appetite for quality live entertainment, and give them more. Along with the sponsorship and financial support of the Brown & Williamson Tobacco Co, the festival catapulted into a multi-city event.
In June 1981, The Atlanta Kool Jazz Festival was held at the former Atlanta Fulton County Stadium. The big name headliners included The Isley Brothers, The Spinners, Johnny Taylor, The Manhattans, Aretha Franklin, Peabo Bryson, Cameo, and The Jones Girls. The Kool Festival was held that same year at the Superdome in New Orleans.
The festival played later that same summer at its birthplace, Cincinnati’s Riverfront Stadium. The Cincinnati line-up continued to maintain its original jazz genre, by featuring such jazz greats as Jimmy Smith, Herbie Mann, Nate Adderly, Eddie”Lockjaw” Davis, and Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers. The Kool Jazz Festival played in July 1980, for a 4 year run at Milwaukee’s County Stadium.
Over the years as a result of a number of factors, the event has evolved from that of a musical genre of pure jazz, to one predicated by a musical genre of rhythm & blues.
The Cincinnati Music Festival, now held at the all-new Paul Brown Stadium (home of the Cincinnati Bengal’s), is a state of the art facility.
Outside of the performers on stage, it is an event for those who are dedicated people watchers. It is an event to see, and to be seen. It is an event to meet and greet, mix and mingle. When in Cincinnati, be sure to take in the new Underground Railroad Freedom Museum. It is a journey through American history, for the struggle for freedom for African-Americans.
*Incognito ~ It has long been noted that the role of a true artist is to use their art as a vehicle for change and to shed light on the times.
Nina Simone stated that the artist’s responsibility was to “reflect the times” and James Baldwin eloquently noted that their role was to “illuminate darkness and blaze roads” so that the artist would not “lose sight of its purpose, which is, after all, to make the world a more human dwelling place.”
Marvin Gaye asked “What’s Going On” and Stevie Wonder urged us to get on “Higher Ground.” The prolific and pioneering UK singer, guitarist and producer, Jean-Paul “Bluey” Maunick, has been asking the questions and singing the songs for decades.
In Search Of Better Days and his music remains his weapon. While he continues to raise us to our feet with his downright funky and insatiable grooves, he also elevates our consciousness with his poignant visions and dreams.
“We are living in troubled times and I see the plight of the young in my neighborhood, the refugee crisis in London and all over Europe. Corruption. Child abuse. There is political, religious and financial misguided ideology all around the globe,” expresses Bluey, the mastermind behind Incognito.
“My trade is music and social awareness, and as such, I am fully aware of those In Search Of Better Days, including myself!”
Incognito’s anticipated 17th studio album is steeped in deep, rich history, bridging the classic sounds of the past and the tonal and sonic languages of the present and future.
The songs on In Search Of Better Days are songs of love and awareness, that question and challenge and that deliver optimism, joy, and hope. Incognito plans to tour the US in the Fall but until then you have the soundtrack to put you on the road to better days.
The creative force behind Incognito, the preeminent funk/jazz/soul/dance outfit in the world, Bluey, pioneered the ‘acid jazz’ movement and laid down the blueprint for the neo-soul scene to follow.
At a time when drum machines and sampling dominated the airwaves, Bluey and Incognito reminded us of the sheer beauty of the human soul and instrumental virtuosity.
As a producer, songwriter and musician, Bluey has collaborated with a who’s who list in music including James Brown, Stevie Wonder, George Benson, Chaka Khan, R. Kelly, Leon Ware, George Duke, Phillip Bailey, Steve Gadd, Maxi Priest and countless others.
You would think that a 37-year-old band would rest on its laurels…right? No, not Incognito! The band is as creative and full of fire as it was at its conception in 1979. A rare feat in these days and times.
The sound of Bluey’s London for over three and a half decades weaves its way throughout In Search Of Better Days and gives it flesh, with splashes of Drum & Bass and Broken Beats, Rare Groove, Deep Soulful House, and even influences from the Rock and Blues that were at the heart of the UK scene in the late ’60s and early ’70s.
From the driving bass of featured guest Stuart Zender (original Jamiroquai bass player) on the opening track, you know that this album is upping the ante and it’s going to be one hell of a good ride!
Imaani, Vanessa Haynes, Tony Momrelle, Katie Leone, Vula Malinga – the UK’s finest and most soulful voices hit you relentlessly one after the other with songs that will remain with you from the first hearing.
And as if that was not enough to make this one of Incognito’s best albums, in comes American chanteuse extraordinaire – Maysa- aka “the voice of Incognito” – to seal the deal!
Listen to Incognito feat Maysa – All I Ever Wanted (Lyric Video)
Highlights on In Search Of Better Days include such message oriented compositions and real stories of love, loss and revelation as “Love’s Revival,” “Moving On Up,” “I See The Light,” “Echoes of Utopia,” “All I Ever Wanted” and “Everyday Grind,” Bluey’s favorite.
He shares, “Everyday Grind’ is the freshest thing I’ve done in years. Sonically it’s the sound of the London I know in combination with my favorite voice on the planet -Maysa.
It’s about a break up in a relationship that both Maysa and I could identify with and thus tell the tale convincingly because we both lived it!’ Incognito also takes us on a burnin’ and unforgettable instrumental journey on “Bridges of Fire.”
In Search Of Better Days features numerous special guests includingsinger/pianist Avery*Sunshine who plays piano on “I See The Light.”
Bluey shares, “She popped in for a brief couple of hours in my studio and joined in the backing vocal section for a song and sat at my piano and left me a beautiful piano track and said, ‘See if you can do something with this!’
I was instantly inspired to not only write, but to sing. She is an amazing talent!” Also highlighted on the CD is drummer Richard Spaven, cosmic percussionist Jody Linscott, and Japanese guitar legend Tomoyasu Hotei of Kill Bill fame.
Grounding the entire album are the usual suspects: Matt Cooper and Ski Oakenfull (keyboards); Francis Hylton (bass); Francesco Mendolia (drums); João Caetano (percussion); Francisco Sales (lead guitar); Sid Gauld (trumpet); Trevor Mires and Alistair White (trombone); Paul Booth, Jim Hunt, and Andy Ross (sax and flute); and Richard Bull (everything).
These fine artists combine to take the band to a new and higher high! The whole thing is beautifully catalogued, blended, and sonically gift-wrapped by sound engineer Mo Hausler.
As Bluey continues blazing his own trail with his ever-expanding community of all-star artists, fueled by a passion for storytelling and creating unity through the Groove, Incognito’s In Search Of Better Days surely takes us there.
This album is . . . Truth! The musical wizard concludes, “When you are lucky enough to be doing what you love for a living, that alone should be enough to make you want to carry on, add to that the friendships, the wonderful journeys around the world, the possibility to communicate and stimulate change for the better… The thrill just keeps getting stronger!”