HIT-MAKERS PIECES OF A DREAM CONTINUE INSPIRED JOURNEY WITH NEW RECORDING ON ANOTHER NOTE TO BE RELEASED ON SHANACHIE MAY 24, 2019

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Dubbed the “Steely Dan of smooth jazz” by All About Jazz and praised by JazzTimes Magazine for their “consistently winning contemporary jazz,” Pieces Of A Dream has been churning out chart-topping hits for four consecutive decades. Even the iconic Count Basie declared Pieces Of A Dream “A tough act to follow!” Hailing from The City of Brotherly Love, the celebrated band has joined the ranks of some of Philadelphia’s most revered music-makers including Grover Washington, Jr., Patti LaBelle, The Roots, Jill Scott, John Coltrane and Stanley Clarke. Throughout their illustrious career, childhood friends, pianist James Lloyd and drummer Curtis Harmon, have managed to stay true to their mission. “I don’t feel the vision for Pieces has changed at all,” explains Lloyd. “It’s a very simple one, to spread peace through our gift of music.” Curtis Harmon adds, “The band has changed a lot from 1976 to now. I mean just think about it – when we started we were only 3, now we’re 7!” Pieces Of A Dream, whose name is inspired by Pittsburgh tenor titan Stanley Turrentine’s song “Pieces Of Dreams,” remains one of the architects of contemporary jazz and has no plans of slowing down. “Our fans keep us alive and kicking,” declares Harmon. May 24, 2019 Shanachie Entertainment will release On Another Note, Pieces Of A Dream’s 24th recording. “We’re back folks with one more to add to your collection,” says James Lloyd. “I hope the new music shows the passion we put into the performances on this project and our constant drive to improve on everything we deliver to our fans.”
Pieces Of A Dream has toured the world, sold over one million albums, and scored both Smooth Jazz and R&B radio hits along the way. Curtis Harmon reflects, “So far our fans and the DJs seem cool with what we have been doing so I say if the recipe works, keep cookin’ with it!” Crowned “Pioneers of Smooth Jazz” by The Philadelphia Inquirer, Pieces Of A Dream’s longevity is a testament to the brotherhood shared between James Lloyd and Curtis Harmon. On Another Note was truly a labor of love. Lloyd shares, “These songs very much reflect both of our hearts and vibes. I believe we are all products of our environment and if one creates music from the heart it contains all of their emotions.”
On Another Note finds Pieces Of A Dream doing what they do best – serving up their irresistible signature fusion of Jazz, R&B, Funk, Pop, Blues and beyond. There is something for everyone and for every mood. “This CD should play like the set list of life,” says Lloyd. “It is for moments of joy, melancholy, high activity, retrospection, party-mode, pain, hopefulness, and sometimes just plain fun.” The CDs first single and title track is a sweet and soulful groove showcasing the tenor of Tony Watson Jr. The sultry and R&B laced “Floating” follows and features the fluid and enchanting guitar of Chris Harris. Lloyd and Harmon provide the right vibe with their high-octane groove “Kickin’ & Screamin’.” The spirited anthem joins the duo with both Chris Harris and co-writer Tony Watson Jr. Together the ensemble kicks it up a notch for a funk showdown. “This song is my favorite track,” shares Harmon. I just think that this song is a true funk instrumental that’s going to be a whole lot of fun for our audience to hear and for us to perform. Tony and I had a lot of fun writing it.”
Pieces Of A Dream shifts gears with the gorgeous ballad “Take Me There,” which provides the right showcase for James Lloyd to demonstrate just how he makes the keys sing. The spirited and jubilant “A Pieces Fiesta,” is a Latin-tinged affair and cause for celebration showcasing the multi-dimensional range of Pieces Of A Dream. The explosive track features the percussive wonder of Curtis Harmon along with Elec Simon. The tranquil and graceful “Images of Peace,” which James Lloyd cites as his track favorite, offers a sublime meditative oasis from the rushed pace of our daily lives, while “Rolling Along” is a bluesy anthem with a kick and groove that is sure to elevate your mood.
On Another Note also features the sweet bounce of “Smooth Dreams” and the uplifting “Real To Me.” The album comes to a rousing finale with the swinger and stepper-esque groove of “Last Call.” But don’t worry it ain’t over ‘til it’s over. James Lloyd says, “Here’s the game plan folks; create and release music to try to touch people, perform live and try to touch people there and along the way, teach others what we’ve learned along our way and repeat it until we expire.” So let the music play!
Not many groups manage to stay together for 42 years and amass a catalogue of 24 recordings. The story of Pieces Of A Dream is remarkable considering James Lloyd and Curtis Harmon were 16 and 18 respectively when they released their first recording in 1981. Not long after that they hit the road performing in Grover Washington Jr.’s rhythm section and opening for him as Pieces Of A Dream. “Mr. Magic” himself took Lloyd and Harmon under his wings and signed the band as the first group with his brand new production company. Danny Harmon, Curtis’ father and a jazz musician himself, became their manager and had the guys listening to the Modern Jazz Quartet, Ahmad Jamal and Oscar Peterson as they developed their unique sound, blending their jazz roots with R&B, soul and funk. Pieces released three albums in quick succession, firmly establishing its place in the world of smooth jazz with the CDs Pieces of a Dream (1981), We Are One (1982) and Imagine This (1983). Those albums include some of their biggest early hits, including “Warm Weather,” “Mount Airy Groove” and “Fo Fi Fo.” Pieces Of A Dream recorded their Shanachie debut, In The Moment, in 2013, followed by 2015’s All In and Just Funkin’ Around in 2017.
“Hopefully On Another Note will take our fans on a joyride like no other ‘Pieces’ album or CD ever has. The range of influences on this one are broad, from Funk to Latin ballads. You can’t help but feel a wide range of emotion. We just want everyone to enjoy the entire journey,” concludes Curtis Harmon. James Lloyd adds, “We’re looking forward to Pieces Of A Dream’s Golden Anniversary. We’ve already been blessed with so much but that is an incredible milestone that few are able to reach…fingers crossed!”

ERIC ROBERSON ON “THE BOX”

When you hear an artist who woos you with their velvety voice and multidimensional music, you know you’re listening to someone special. When you see that artist perform live, you’re given a glimpse into just how good they are. Eric Roberson–unbeknownst to some–is a singer, songwriter, producer, and Grammy Award Nominee. He has worked with artists such as Jill Scott, Dwele, and Kim Waters. Growing up in a home surrounded by music, ironically, it wasn’t until Eric’s early twenties that he realized music was going to be his life. He takes the diversity of a myriad of genres along with inspiration from those he’s worked with to create music that infuses everything from hip hop to R&B to rock. There are so many facets to Roberson–not to mention his riveting live performances. The chemistry between him and his band is incredible to witness. It is as if they are all sharing the same mind and thoughts simultaneously. His performances can be viewed as theatrical in a sense. With the ability to improvise and make up songs with suggestions from the crowd, he adds another entire dimension for the viewers. Eric’s uncanny ability to engage the fans by pulling them into his performances enhances the experience exponentially. With the highly anticipated release of his tenth album, The Box, being released on August 12th, Roberson is thrilled to share new music with his fans.

Eric and I discuss his career and The Box in a live interview:

 

Eric Roberson "The Box"

Eric Roberson “The Box

SAXOPHONIST AND VOCALIST MARQUEAL JORDAN

Marqueal Jordan is a double threat in the world of music. The extraordinary musician is a gifted saxophone player and an amazing vocalist. He’s thankful for his vocal talent and has mastered how to use it. However, it’s the saxophone that compels him to push beyond the boundaries. Marqueal has been on the music scene for a long time. Early on, he showcased his talents with the funk unit “Fat Time.” Along the way, he had several opportunities to weave his way through genres such as R & B, Blues, and Jazz. Fortunately for him, in the long run, those experiences would have served him immensely. When he was asked by Brian Culbertson to join his band and go on tour with him, he did not hesitate. This was the moment for which he’d been preparing for many years. Since that time, Marqueal has collaborated with some of the very best artists in multiple genres of music. His skills and talents make him the perfect asset. Although he has spent much of his career as a sideman, Marqueal recently decided to step into the spotlight and embark upon a solo career. That decision has proven to be the right move for Jordan. His debut album is titled “Catalyst” and is full of songs that Marqueal says are “the best representation of himself.” His quest was to create a project that was a cross between Grover Washington and Maxwell. Ultimately, his work with friends and fellow musicians Brian Culbertson, DJ INC, Chris “Big Dog” Davis, and Frank McComb has led to this body of music that is nothing short of incredible. All of his hard work paved the way for such a time as this.

Marqueal and I had a great time talking about “Catalyst.”

Marqueal Jordan

Marqueal Jordan

Marqueal Jordan

Marqueal Jordan