“Groove-O-Matic” glory for guitarist Blake Aaron‏

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“Groove-O-Matic” glory for guitarist Blake Aaron

 

No. 1 single will appear on the “Soul Stories” album coming this summer.

 

Aliso Viejo, Calif. (20 February 2014): Guitarist Blake Aaron is still tucked away in the recording studio tinkering on his forthcoming fifth album, “Soul Stories,” yet he’s already topped the charts with a single from the session. Aaron’s cool electric jazz guitar dances to a retro ‘70s disco groove aided by big vibrant horn blasts on “Groove-O-Matic,” which has spent the last nine weeks at No. 1 on the Groove Jazz Music chart and entered the Billboard Smooth Jazz Songs Top 5.

“Groove-O-Matic” is the second single to hit the charts from the album slated for release this summer on Innervision Records. Jazz crooner Spencer Day was featured on “You’re The One For Me,” which reigned in the Top 10 for 20 weeks. The first album Aaron has produced on his own, “Soul Stories” is a collection of soulful jazz, funk and Latin grooves and includes an appearance by urban jazz saxophone star Najee.

“’Soul Stories’ is literally the musical story of my soul. It’s been a long-time coming and spans the journey of my marriage and the birth of my two children. It’s my first CD that is entirely self-produced, my biggest radio and commercial success to date and has been nicknamed our ‘Third Child.’ I’m very proud of the record and look forward to performing it live,” said Aaron, who will perform tracks from the disc with his band and special guests this Saturday night at Spaghettini in Seal Beach, Calif.

Aaron headlines the San Antonio Summer Arts Jazz Festival on June 1and is presently lining up summer dates in support of “Soul Sessions.”

Hailed by the Los Angeles Times as “a genius on the guitar,” Aaron pours passion and precision into his fretwork. Emerging from the studio where he was an in-demand session player and stepping out of the shadows after being a long-time sideman, Aaron launched his solo career with 2001’s “With Every Touch” containing appearances by contemporary jazz stalwarts Eric Marienthal and David Benoit. Singles from the debut album as well as from subsequent releases – “Bringin’ It Back,” “Desire” and “A Romantic Christmas” – have always been favorably received at radio and charted well nationally. Since 2008, Aaron has hosted the internationally syndicated “The Blake Aaron Radio Show” that he describes as an “artist to artist show” on which he jams live on the weekly program with guests that have included Anita Baker, Kenny Loggins, Brian Culbertson, Boney James, Peter White, Rick Braun, Mindi Abair, Earl Klugh, Lee Ritenour, Nathan East, Paul Jackson Jr., Jackiem Joyner and Jessy J. His resume includes playing on and composing music and theme songs for films and popular television series such as “MAD TV,” “The Ben Stiller Show,” “Super Dave Osborne” and “The Jamie Kennedy Experiment.” Additional information is available at www.BlakeAaron.com.

“Soul Stories” contains the following songs:

“Groove-O-Matic”

“Encantadora”

“You’re The One For Me”

“Wes Side Story”

“You’re My Miracle”

“Sara Smile”

“Europa”

“Soul Stories”

THE INNOVATIVE NAJEE

Najee once again very poignantly delivers a collection of songs that we can all connect with on his latest album, “The Morning After.” It encompasses stories of love and journeys well traveled, and it debuted #1 Contemporary Jazz album on the Billboard charts. With a career that spans over several years, Najee continues to captivate audiences without fail. Over the years, he has collaborated with everyone from George Duke to Jeff Lorber to Phil Perry. Najee has the ability to create songs that everyone loves and that reach across multiple genres. As is displayed with the release of the single titled “In The Mood To Take It Slow,” featuring his long time friend Meli’sa Morgan, he does this by making music that is accessible and relevant. She was the perfect person for this sensual slow groove. Smooth Jazz radio stations as well as R & B stations have been giving the single a lot of airplay, and fans are starting to request it more. Najee will be on tour throughout the upcoming year, promoting “The Morning After” and continuing to share his new music.

Najee and I discuss it all via Skype.

Najee

Najee

Najee

Najee

The Beauty Behind The Sax… Jeanette Harris

She’s talented, confident, humble, and has a great sense of humor. As a child, she was intrigued by the photo on a Grover Washington, Jr. cassette tape. That fascination with the sax led Jeanette Harris to become a saxophone player. She has an undeniable sound that’s uniquely her own and shares reflections of herself in each song. On stage and off, Jeanette is dedicated to being the best at what she does. From exhilarating performances to incredible song writing, she has enhanced the world of Smooth Jazz. Her cd “Summer Rain” offers something for everyone. From the teasing “Take Me There” or up-tempo “The Ride,” to the Latin glazed “Muy Caliente,” you can feel the positive vibe she delivers.

Jeanette and I share conversation.

Jeanette Harris

Jeanette Harris

Jeanette Harris

Jeanette Harris

The Thrilling Elan Trotman

Elan Trotman is not only a brilliant recording artist, he’s a composer and performer. Coming from the beautiful island of Barbados, Elan knows how to infuse the sounds of calypso and reggae into his music. Yet, his music is also sexy and full of edgy melodies. He shows this side of himself on the “Love and Sax” CD. His collaboration with Brian Simpson on “Heaven In Your Eyes” climbed the charts, and quickly paved the way for all that was to come for Elan. His latest release “Tropicality” features Peter White among other jazz artists, and embodies his native Barbadian culture.

More from Elan himself.

Elan Trotman

Elan Trotman

Elan Trotman

Elan Trotman

The forecast is bright

Looking ahead a few months, jump starting the 5th Annual Carolina Jazz Concert Series hosted by the Jazz Diva in Charlotte, NC will be Najee and Alex Bugnon on August 3rd at the Halton Theater. The second concert in the series will be headlined by Take 6 on September 28th at the Halton Theater. The season will end with a “MUST SEE” concert featuring Johnathan Butler on November 2nd at the Halton Theater. Tickets can be purchased for these shows at http://tix.cpcc.edu/events/carolina_jazz_concert_series or by calling 704-330-6534. Tickets go on sale on February 15th.

Guitarist Jonathan Butler

Guitarist Jonathan Butler

There are many concerts to attend this year. However, I must admit that I’m so excited to end the year with one very special evening with Spyro Gyra and The Yellowjackets on December 14th at 8:00pm. The show will be held at The Knight Theater in Charlotte, NC.  Tickets can be purchased at www.carolinatix.org, or by calling the box office at 704-372-1000. They are 2 of my all time favorite jazz bands that I’ve loved and listened to for many years. It’s like the best Christmas gift I could have received.  Thanks to the Jazz Diva Tammy Greene for making this happen. You don’t want to miss this opportunity to see them perform live. I can personally attest to that.

Spyro Gyra and The Yellowjackets

Spyro Gyra and The Yellowjackets