“If you want to go faster, go alone. If you want to go further, go together.”
What do you get when you release an album enriched with songs–some of which were written over a decade ago? You get Joey Sommerville’s latest album, “Overnight Sensation.” With over 20 years of experience, Joey is still motivated to pour his heart and soul into every song because he is keenly aware that he has a gift that is meant to be shared through music. Although the industry has changed significantly over the years, Sommerville remains comfortable in his skin and true to his craft. Joey brings his music to life when performing, fueled by energy from the crowd. It helps that he is not a shy kind of guy. He shares the sentiment of most musicians that music is meant to be felt. From start to finish, “Overnight Sensation” is a powerhouse of music that can be overwhelmingly felt. Each song, leading with the title track and first single, “Overnight Sensation” sends the listener on a whimsical journey amassed with emotional twists and turns. The album was produced by Joey along with Jeff Lorber on a couple of songs–definitely a match made in heaven. Also lending their talents to the album are Earl Klugh, Jeff Bradshaw, Elan Trotman, and Eric Essix. Each collaboration enhances the treasure trove of songs in Joey’s vault. You will be spell bound after listening to “Overnight Sensation” and taking the heartfelt musical journey led by Joey.
I had an awesome interview with Joey:
The year of 2014 is off to a great start for Eric Essix. He is enjoying a multitude of success from his latest release “Evolution” and planning an event with a purpose. The Eric Essix Jazz Escape will be held in Birmingham, Alabama on August 29-31 this year. This will be the first year of the Escape that Essix plans to have annually–very appropriately named an Escape versus a festival because that is what Eric intends the experience to feel like. The Jazz Escape will be held at the Renaissance Birmingham Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa. The line-up for the three day event will include Brian Culbertson, Rick Braun, and Essix’s own band just to name a few. All the proceeds from the Jazz Escape will go directly to Eric’s non-profit foundation, The Eric Essix Foundation for the Arts and Education.
Eric talks with me about his vision and plans for Jazz Escape.
Melvin Miller is a talented trumpet player with the ability to engage and entertain audiences in a style like no other. Having been influenced by legendary musicians such as Miles Davis, Louis Armstrong, and Dizzy Gillespie, Miller has crafted his own sound. Being versatile is one attribute that makes Melvin so appealing. He can play everything from Jazz to R&B to Pop. His career in music is vast and worldwide. Melvin is the composer of the fanfare for The Trumpet Awards, has performed with the UniverSoul Circus, and has served as the musical director for Gloria Gaynor. It is no surprise that he has also shared the stage with dynamic artists such as Alex Bugnon, Eric Essix, James Brown, and Wynton Marsalis just to name a few. Residing in Atlanta has opened the door for Miller to become the fifth man of the group Five Men On A Stool–an experience he shares with fellow talented musicians. In the midst of all that he’s a part of, Melvin still creates great music. To his loving mother, he is the “young man with a horn.” And this title has followed him throughout his life. As a tribute to his mother, he wrote his latest album, “I Hope You Dance.” Each song has a distinct meaning and direct connection to his mother whom he lost a few years ago. Through the pain and with the help of friends and family, he masterfully created a musical gem. The album has an array of songs ranging from up-tempo, funky grooves to smooth heartfelt tunes. I haven’t experienced another album quite like it.
Melvin talks to me about his career and opens up about the making of “I Hope You Dance.”
There are so many words to describe the multi-talented Kelvin Wooten. In fact, there are so many, that it’s challenging to limit my perspective to just a few. Growing up, music was always a part of his life, whether it was at home or in church. In middle school, when he decided to actually pick an instrument to play in the school band, he chose the Baritone. That was only the beginning of what Kelvin was going to accomplish in his future. After his freshman year at Alabama A&M University, his life was forever changed. As some would say, he was in the right place at the right time. He was doing what he loved to do when unbeknownst to him, someone heard him playing the guitar in the background and asked to speak with him. That someone was the one and only Raphael Saadiq. Kelvin was asked to fly to LA, and that was the beginning of his illustrious career. He’s a multi-instrumentalist, writer, arranger, and producer. He’s worked with some of the best in the business. This year, he received a Grammy nomination with Anthony Hamilton for Best R&B Album. He’s produced music that has sold more than 10 million albums, yet he also makes the time to give back and be a part of his community in Alabama. I could honestly go on and on about Kelvin and what he’s accomplished. However, I’ll let his work speak for itself.
Listen to what he has to say.
There’s no questioning the talent of guitarist Eric Essix. Straight from his southern roots, and true to who he is, Eric brings his music to life. It’s full of soul, funk, gospel, and blues. He doesn’t limit himself to just being a guitarist. He’s a musician that’s not afraid to take chances, and reach for the stars. His talent knows no boundaries, and his music is timeless. Eric is enjoying the success of his current self titled CD “Eric Essix”, while also working on a project with the group Southern Gentlemen.
Eric and I discuss his incredible career.
Choose the way you fly!
Hands On, Headpones On, and Figuring the Rest Out As I Go
Exploring the Vinyl Universe
We all relate to the healing power of music.
Chant Your Mantra
Mundane musings from a collector of the quotidian
Legendary Guitar Licks and Original Songs
everything is a story
Old editors never die, they just revert to type
Art and Ideas of Juan Navarro
Photos of the Great Lakes State
Real Estate Matters with Realtor Freeman Burns
the Story within the Story