Tony Exum, Jr.
This National Recording Artist’s saxophone style brings to mind the sultriness of Grover Washington, Jr., the soulfulness of David Sanborn, the silky smoothness of George Howard, and the tender passion of Ronnie Laws.
Thomas “Tony” Exum, Jr. was born in Colorado Springs, CO. He spent much of his childhood travelling from Germany, to Mississippi, to New Orleans, and back, due to his military upbringing. As a child, as early as age 3, Tony’s interest in “grown up” music was extensive. For Christmas, at the age of 6, Tony received Parliament-Funkadelic albums and by then, he was already a fan of Slave, the Jacksons, S.O.S. Band, RUN DMC, LL COOL J, and New Edition. He could recite the words to his favorite tunes and also identify any instrument!
At the age of 11, Tony picked up a saxophone given to him by his uncle Larry, a U.S. Army musician at Fort Carson, for the first time and soon developed a love for it. He later developed a passion for the sounds he could create with the saxophone, even being asthmatic; and this is where his journey began. “I knew I would be a musician of some sort. The saxophone intrigued me and quickly became the way my heart wanted to express itself musically.”
Tony Exum, Jr. attended the highly acclaimed Lamont School of Music, University of Denver, where his career began. In his developing years, heutilized his gifting by performing in stage plays, and as a sideman across the state of Colorado. He became a sought after musician performing live over 150 times a year. Tony credits the success he gained in the early years to the “greats” he shared the stage with The Temptations, The Four Tops, Nelson Rangell, Chi-lites, and War.
In 2008, Tony began his solo career, traveled extensively with local bands and became a fixture in Denver’s famed jazz venue, Jazz@ Jacks where he still performs regularly. In 2010, he released his first album, “Finally.” Tony marks this release as one that catapulted him into the National scene. The next few years grounded Tony & molded/shaped his professional career. He began performing nationally at jazz venues like Blues Alley, Sedona Jazz on the Rocks Festival, JW Marriot Jazz Festival , Yoshi’s and many others. This lead to the coveted award voted by over 10,000 listeners, the 2011 International Breakout Star Award by the Los Angeles based coffeetalkjazzradio.com.
In 2012, Tony released his sophomore album, “The One.” where he describes these rhythmic tunes as a classy mix of “Urban contemporary jazz funk & R&B. As Ronald Jackson, of thesmoothejazzride.com, says, “The One,” contains much of the vibe and groove that brought his fans to his side in the first place: A combination of danceable jams, sensuously slow and appealing R&B’ish seductions, and an even punchier delivery on other tracks” After this release, he began sharing stages with, Aysha, Nick Collionne, Gerald Albright, Eric Darius, and Dave Koz.
As a live performer, Exum’s smile and sense of humor connected him with his audience. He exudes the chemistry of seductive soul, flirtatious solos reminiscent of old school R&B, all while bringing his audience to their feet teasing them with (instrumental) battles with fellow band members. He commands the stage while remaining humble and willing to share it with other performers.
Tony Exum, Jr. was in the stage play, "God Loves You Too" in the spring of 2015. Also, look forward to Mr. Exum's 3rd CD release entitled "5" in Spring 2016 with the 1st single "She's Bad" in June 2015. Current albums Finally (2010) and The One (2012) are available via his website, www.tonyexumjr.com, Amazon.com, cdbaby.com and iTunes or wherever digital music is sold.
Exum is now a proud member of the San Francisco Chapter of NARAS as voting member for the 2015 Grammys.
As of November 1st 2014, Tony has joined the Sax Dakota family as an endorsing artist. Tony’s Alto Saxophone, SDA-1000 Matte Silver finish is from the famed Sax Dakota Co. which he plays exclusively.
You can contact Tony at: www.tonyexumjr.com
In 1997, Lucas got his start as a musician playing as a sideman in a local band, Between 9 & 7. The band recorded a CD, which was a moderate regional hit. Although he got performances, both rhythm and solos, Lucas felt it was time to develop his own by ensemble to demand more challenges within himself as both a musician and entrepreneur. So, on New Year's Eve of 1999, Lucas formed his own contemporary jazz trio, "Xpressions". They produced and recorded a CD titled "Footprints", which gained notoriety in regional markets. The record contained the classic hit "People Make the World Go Round". All of the compositions were produced and arranged by friend and keyboardist Karey Davis and assisted by Mr Lucas himself.
An acclaimed wizard on the soprano sax, national recording artist Dee Lucas has been steadily growing his brand and base beginning with "Remembrance" in 2004, a tribute to the late legend George Howard. Continuing steady showcase of style and technique with his sophomore release "Something to Ride 2", 2010's "Standing Room Only", and the 2012's compilation of the "Rebirth of the Smooth". He released "The Smooth Factor" in 2014 which was a refreshing interjection into the competitive genre of smooth jazz. Now with his brand new CD "Going Deeper", the journey continues.
As a runner-up in the 2007 Capital Jazz Festival Competition, Dee Lucas has opened for a plethora of artists such as Boney James, Norman Brown, Ronnie Laws, Nneena Freelon, Hugh Masakela, Greg Karukas, Peter White, Nick Colionne, and Michael Franks. He has performed at several jazz festivals such as The Arizona Jazz Festival, The Jacksonville Jazz Festival, The Savannah Jazz Festival, and The Atlanta Jazz Festival.
In 2004, Dee Lucas's entrepreneurial skills had surfaced, and his newly-formed record label, Mo Better Recordings, was conceived. His debut solo CD, Remembrance, was released and independently distributed in 2005.
Adding consistency to his young but surprising start, Dee released his sophomore CD, "Something to Ride 2", in 2007, which peaked at #10 on the Smoothjazz.com Top 50 Indie Charts. With this record, this saxman wanted to further develop his own distinctive sound as a solo artist. His style, from a horn perspective, is different from that of many traditional smooth jazz artists in terms of melodic phrasing. Lucas mentioned, "I like taking off on an uncharted path in music and Something to Ride 2 is a representation of the journey that I take each time I pick up the sax."
In 2010, Dee Lucas released "Standing Room Only": which was composed and produced by several talented producers including Grammy winner Phil Davis. The CD peaked at #26 on the Smoothjazz.com Top 50 Indie Charts and #29 on the Billboard jazz charts. In 2012, "Rebirth of the Smooth" was released as a compilation of Dee's first 3 solo recordings to celebrate what he has accomplished in his steadily rising career, as well as his direction in contemporary jazz. It offers a wide array of styles coming from various producers pushing the envelope in this already competitive genre of jazz.
In 2014, "The Smooth Factor", Lucas continued to season his contemporary jazz with R&B, and featured the work of such producing heavyweights as LA-based Lew Laing, Jr., and Atlanta-based and Grammy-Award winning Phil Davis.
The journey continues in 2016 with "Going Deeper", as the new CD has hit Billboard Smooth Jazz charts...debuting at #30 and steadily climbing.
Dee Lucas performs exclusively on his Sax Dakota Soprano sax; SDSS-XG-707
Contact Mr. Lucas at: email@example.com
LeiLani Vidal began classical piano lessons at age seven, the same year she underwent successful
open-heat surgery for a rare congenital condition. Soon after the delicate surgery, LeiLani’s
parents, Cam and Dolly Vidal, both professional musicians, decided that the flute would provide
excellent therapy during her long recovery. Playing the flute proved to be very helpful not only
in strengthening her heart muscles and lungs, but helped instill a passion for music and
determination to succeed that has lasted a lifetime. LeiLani’s heart and heart for music are as
strong as ever.
By age eleven LeiLani was playing her flute on stage with Cam Vidal and the Blue Notes, her father’s popular pop, jazz and swing band, and quickly became a genuine crowd pleaser. Recognizing a good thing when he saw it, her father added alto sax, tenor sax and electric guitar to his list of demands on the young artist. From age eleven to twenty LeiLani performed with mom (vocals), father (trumpet & keyboards) and sisters Camella (drums) and Kim (bass guitar) at hundreds of gigs all over Southern California, sometimes doing four weddings, parties, special occasions and military events each weekend. They were a working band!
While the band played jazz, swing, R&B and pop music of the day, LeiLani’s true inspiration came mostly from the jazz era and, like her father Cam, she gravitated towards the great standards whenever the opportunity arose. Today, while LeiLani can hold her own at a blues jam, solo in a quartet, and is highly valued for her exceptional sight-reading skills with the big bands, her heart remains in the world of jazz.
At twenty-one, LeiLani left her father’s band and home (and steady income) to begin her education at Southern California College of Chiropractic in Los Angeles, CA. Completely on her own for the first time, and needing to make tuition and rent payments, LeiLani turned to what she knew and loved best – playing on stage. Along with the demands of classes and study, she survived by playing lead sax in an all-female house band in nearby Long Beach.
LeiLani’s diligence and determination to complete what she started earned her a Bachelor’s degree in Human Biology and finally, her Doctorate in Chiropractic. After the long struggle of putting herself through school, she returned to San Diego and opened up her own private practice. That was 20 years ago. Now LeiLani (Doc) is raising three beautiful young musicians of her own. Gino (12) plays trumpet and bass, Dominic (14) plays sax, bass and drums, and daughter Alexa (17) is first chair piano in her high school senior jazz band. Without a doubt, LeiLani has not only encouraged her children and given them the opportunity to explore their musical talents, but also provided a great example of what it takes to accomplish things in life. Most of all, she shared her love and passed on a heart for music.
After purchasing a Dakota tenor saxophone from brother-in-law and fellow Dakota artist Richard Elliot, LeiLani was instantly inspired and became determined to take her saxophone playing to another level. She joined a quartet, formed a quartet of her own, played with a number of San Diego’s premier big bands and popular house bands, and lately joined The Fabulous Mar Dels, one of San Diego best-known and long standing commercial bands.
LeiLani recently performed on Smooth Jazz guitarist Will Sumner’s CD and you can look forward to her acting debut in the upcoming documentary film “The Boys of Immigrants” in which she portrays a saxophone-wailing street performer. Currently, LeiLani is working on her first album due to be released in January 2013. We know that whatever we find LeiLani doing, she’ll be putting her heart into it.
Leilani exclusively plays and endorses Dakota Saxophone models: SDSS-XG 707 SOPRANO and SDT-XG 606 TENOR at all venues and live performances
For more information please visit her website www.leilanividal.com
JASON PARFAIT was born in Houma, Louisiana. As a saxophone player, Jason Parfait was always surrounded by musicians in his family. Both parents were vocalists and his father was an avid guitar player. During his school age years, Jason was always involved with the school band and then at age 17 began his professional career, with his step-father, in the Bourre’ Band. This beginning led to his participation and recordings with Treater, Don Rich, Foret Tradition, and his involvement and contributions with over 60 albums.
With Jason’s passion for the saxophone, his influences included Junior Walker, King Curtis, Jon Smith (Edgar Winter’s White Trash, Toto, and Doobie Brothers), Johnny Colla (Huey Lewis and the News), Lenny Pickett (Tower of Power), Richard Elliot, Dave Koz, Gerald Albright. With such a wide range of musical interests and with this variety of exposure, Jason has the talent and ability to play any style of music.
Some of his accomplishments include his performance at the Miss USA pageant with Marc Broussard, and his featuring at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival for 3 years. One of the highlights of his career was performing with Percy Sledge and appearing in two movies, The Badge and Happy, Here and Now. With an extensive list of contributions to known talent, Jason has worked with musicians such as TK Hulin, GG Shin, Johnnie Allan, Jivin’ Gene, Joe Barry, Tommy Mclain, Jerry LaCroix, Warren Storm, Willie Tee, The Fabulous Boogie Kings, Wayne Toups, and T Graham Brown.
Jason is a father of four children who are also inclined to the arts: Jason Michael Parfait (saxophone), Nate Parfait (sings), Kerrie Parfait (saxophone), and Kaylee Parfait (sings and dances). Much to be proud of!
Currently, Jason averages 150 performances per year with a continued list of seasoned bands and musicians. Recently, he has begun his long time goal of completing his first solo album. Because of his respected position among saxophone artists, he has endorsement roles with Sax Dakota Saxophones, JH Audio Earbuds, and Pfantom Sound Mouthpieces.
Jason performs exclusively on his Dakota SDT-XR 92 Raw Brass Tenor Sax.
Jason can be contacted via his website: www.jasonparfait.com, his email: https://www.youtube.com/user/lasaxman, or through Facebook: www.facebook.com/jparfaitmusic.
His videos can be viewed on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/user/lasaxman.
SHANE PHILEN, Sax Dakota artist, is known for his musical diversity and passion for education.
A GRAMMY® nominated and DOVE® award winning performer, Shane has devoted his skills and experience as a performer, arranger, composer, producer, clinician and adjudicator since 1992.
Shane is active in the recording industry as a session artist, producer, and arranger for LiveHorns.com, a recording company that has allowed artists, songwriters, producers, and record companies to include a real, “live” horn section to any recording project since 2005.
He is also the Assistant Director of Bands at Theodore High School, and coordinator of the Mobile County High School Jazz Honor Band.
Shane has been featured with Louis Bellson, Big Daddy Weave, The Coasters, Travis Cottrell, Geron Davis, Darrell Evans, 4Him, Group 1 Crew, Karen Fairchild (Little Big Town), Dan McMillion Jazz Orchestra, Mandisa, Frank Mantooth, the Moscow Sax Quintet, The Temptations, Truth, Veggie Tales, and Ayiesha Woods.
He has also served as musical director for the Distinguished Young Women Program (formerly America’s Junior Miss) and has performed with numerous ensembles, theatre productions, society events, cruise lines, and festivals such as Bayfest, Gulf Coast Ethnic and Heritage Jazz Festival, Halifax Jazz Festival, Pensacola Jazz Fest, and Arts Alive.
Mr Philen plays and endorsers exclusively his SAX DAKOTA TENOR SAX MODEL SDT-XG 505 at all live and recording venues and events.
#CausewayMusic #CausewayJazz #LiveHorns
Hayan Charlston is a woodwind specialist , performer, song writer, contractor, and educator. Holding a B.M. and M.M. degree in music performance, she is CEO and founder of her company HCwinds which provides entertainment services for various events. Because of her versatility, she performed in various different musical settings and groups playing many styles of music in live performances and recording sessions.
HC has worked with and contracted for some of the current popular Persian artists. She played at countless local and out of town venues/places, from The Greek Amphitheater, Gibson Amphitheater and many local 5-star resorts/theaters in CA to exotic countries like Dubai.
HC's performances has been reviewed by LAweekly, Examiner, Glendale News Press, Musicals in LA, StagesceneLA, and appeared in Jazztimes magazine as Dakota Sax artist (June and September 2012 issues). Smooth jazz single "Shoreline Sunrise" performed by Hayan Charlston aired on the Smooth Jazz Show 98.9 WOWE Jamz in 2012 in Michigan.
She can also be seen in some TV shows and independent films like CSI Miami, Teen Wolf, Two Broke Girls, ER, What About Brian, Without a Trace, United States of Tara and Sweet 16. Ms. Charlston's teaching experience includes directing community bands, chamber groups, private instructions at music studios in CA.. Her Master Class and woodwind clinic experience includes holding Master Class concerts and woodwinds demonstrations to schools in the Orange County district supported by The Philharmonic Society of Local 47, Master Class for Tom Kubis' intro to music appreciation class at Golden West College, woodwind clinic concert at the YULA Jewish high school in Beverly Hills and also taught at many elementary schools in the downtown Los Angeles district through USC Outreach program.
She is still currently active with master classes and private and group instructions. HC is always working on many different projects at HCwinds Entertainment, which offers various entertainment services and packages for all occasions and shows like Groovin Touch, Illustrious Sound, Emerald*Horns) while collaborating with other creative artists, bands, DJs, and entertainment companies.
98.9 WOWE Jamz Smooth Jazz Shows, Michigan (smooth jazz single "Shoreline Sunrise" on air 2012)
Dakota Saxophones, PJLA MUSIC SALES & MARKETING
Hayan performs exclusively and endorses Sax Dakota model Saxophones: SDA-XG-404 & SDT-XG-606
JazzTimes (issues June 2012, September 2012)
StageScene LA, April, 2012
Musicals in LA, Dec 2010
Examiner, Dec 2010
Glendale Newspress, Dec, 2010
StageScene LA, Dec 2010
LA Weekly, Dec 2010
Channel ABC, Dec 2010
Sessions and Shows:
Abstract Ensemble albums (2012) |"It's A SpongeBob Christmas" Album (released Nov. 2012) | WGTE public media commercial tracks (2012)| Will Farrell’s Funny or Die Comedy | Illustrious Sound album singles| Joe Gallant film project | Mehrshad (Iranian pop artist's new single in 2013)| Kazem Alemi, Persian producer (woodwind track) | Mansour, Persian pop artist (Vegas show tracks) | Michael Ziegfield’s Comedy shows| The First Joel- Billy Joel comedy (at Garry Marshall’s theatre) |The Mystic Orchestra classic rock (national tour)| American Music Abroad (Europe tour) | The Sit Down (Independent film) weSparks Cancer Benefit | WYNGS fashion show
(Ionescopade, A New Brain, Legally Blonde, The Wedding Singer, Sound of Music, Grease, Christmas Carol, Chicago, Aida, West Side Story, Into the Woods, Secret Garden, Oliver, Scarlett Pimpernell, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Guys and Dolls, Throughly Modern Millie, Roaring of Greasepaint, The Chorus Line, Carousal, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Man of La Mancha, Boyfriend, Anything Goes, Flower Drum Song, Sweeny Todd, Beauty and the Beast, Ragtime, Wizard of Oz, Suessical the Musical, Pippin, Big River, You are a Good Man Charlie Brown, Urinetown, Oklahoma!, A Funny Thing on the Way Happened to Forum, Kiss Me Kate, Cabaret, Fiodello, Reefer Madness, Mac and Mabel, The Music Man, Silver Stockings, Five Guys Named Moe, Nutcracker, Joseph and the amazing technicolor dream coat, Company, Babes in Arms, Curtains, City of Angels, White Christimas, 1940's Radio Hour, Evita, 25th Annual Spelling Bee, Damn Yankees, No No Nannett, Frog and Toad, Bye Bye Birdie, Ave Q, Drowsy Chaperone, etc..)
Odyssey Theatre Ensemble | The Troubadour Co. | Musical Theatre West | Pacific Light Opera | Downey Civic Light Opera | Brea Civic Light Opera | Fullerton Civic Light Opera
Venues in Southern CA:
Armstrong Torrence Civic Theatre
Baltimore Hotel Downtown LA
Bellflower Civic Center
Thousand Oaks Philharmonic Recital Hall
Universal Hilton at Universal Studios
Universal Sheraton at Universal Studios
Warner Grand Theatre San Pedro
Westin (Downtown San Diego)
Wilshire Theatre, Beverly Hills
Zipper Hall downtown LA
Out of Town Venues:
Dubai- Aviation Club for International Boxing Championship
Ft. Lauderdale/Sunrise, FL - Bank Atlantic Center
Jacksonville, FL- Veterans Mem Arena
Las Vegas- (Planet Hollywood, Mandalay Bay, Hyde at Bellagio, Paris)
Mobile, AL- Civic Center
Orlando, FL- Amway Arena
Savannah, GA- Savannah Civic Center
Tampa St. Pete, FL- Times Forum
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Where do you go from #1?
If you are veteran saxophonist Richard Elliot, long known as the "James Brown of Contemporary Jazz" for the intense soul inspirations of his recordings, a relentless tour schedule and joyfully exhausting onstage performances, you dig deep into your R&B/jazz roots.
With a bestselling discography of over 15 recordings since 1986's Initial Approach, thousands of live dates spanning over two decades and one of the largest and most loyal fan bases in contemporary urban jazz, its incredible to hear Elliot declare: "What I'm doing now, enjoying this upward trend in my career, is seriously the most fun I have ever had."
In the past, Elliot has never been big on starting off a new recording project with an overriding concept in mind, preferring to let each one develop more organically—but he came up with a unique starting point for "Rock Steady", calling upon his roots and influences in R&B to create an overall vibe that had a retro feel while incorporating contemporary flavors.
"I see all of my solo albums as if they're vocal albums and using my sax as the voice and offering the latest step of my evolution. When formulas work in the past, many artists have a tendency to do the same thing again and again. But it's more exciting to forge ahead and try new ideas that fit into my natural growth as an artist."
Elliot called on his deep all-star soul-jazz rolodex to find the perfect combination of players to help him realize his evolving "old school" meets "new school" vision. Beyond working with his longtime core touring band members Ron Reinhardt (keyboards), Dwight Sills (guitar), Nate Phillips (bass) and Ricky Lawson (drums), he ensembles with Braun, who is also the album's co-producer.
Also of note are drummer Luis Conte, keyboardist Jeff Lorber, saxophonist Gerald Albright and trombonist Nick Lane. Lorber adds his clever keyboard flair to "Straight Up". "Rock Steady" marks the first time these two powerhouse saxmen have recorded together.
The Scotland born, L.A. raised Elliot found his musical voice on tenor as a teenager and landed his first professional gig touring with Natalie Cole and The Pointer Sisters while he was still in high school. Before joining Tower of Power—which began a stretch that he calls the most influential period of my early career—he played in the adventurous fusion band "Kittyhawk", "The Four Tops" and "The Temptations". He later performed with Melissa Manchester and the Yellowjackets.
Embarking upon one of instrumental music's most dynamic and multi-faceted career, Elliot's sound played a huge part in pioneering the genre and radio format that became today's contemporary urban jazz. Over the years, he has scored four #1 albums, "On The Town", "Soul Embrace", "After Dark" and "Jumpin Off".
In addition to his participation in the current decade's all-star tours, in the mid-90's he helped launch the Guitars & Saxes tours, which he continues to participate in. At his peak, Elliot was annually doing over 100 tour dates.
"I think calling this new album, Rock Steady. was an obvious and inspired choice for many reasons," Elliot says. "The music that inspired the CD has an enduring quality and is part of our American musical heritage. Beyond that, its the perfect metaphor for the good fortune doing what I love to do for so many years. I took a risk leaving Tower of Power for a solo career and never dreamed at the time that I would still have these wonderful opportunities to record and tour over 20 years later. I don't gauge my career based on sales, popularity and money. What matters most is my personal and artistic growth plus those opportunities that reveal themselves as I evolve."
Richard Elliot performs exclusively on and endorses DAKOTA TENOR SAX MODEL SDTXG-606 and STRAIGHT TENOR SAX MODEL SDTS-1022.
CLICK HERE to see Richard Elliot in the Summer Horns - WAVE Exclusive Interview
Jonathan Kilgore realized the potential of his musical talent at the young age of 12. His love for the Creator, coupled with the desire to share his heart through song that encourages the hearts and souls of all people, has propelled Jonathan to become a saxophonist extraordinaire! Jonathan exhibits this passion and unique gift by way of jazzy saxophone performances without compromising the message. He believes that “music has a way of helping, healing and delivering broken hearts and weary souls.”
With his extensive musical experience spanning over two decades, this young, astonishing musician’s prowess has helped Jonathan to cultivate relationships with both gospel and jazz renowned artists across THIS COUNTRY and THE GLOBE. He has appeared in across Georgia, North & South Carolina, Tennessee, Florida, Mississippi, Alabama, Kentucky, Ohio, Chicago, California, New York, Mexico, Kenya Africa, and traveled to Cape Town South Africa this summer for a series of seminars and live performances.
He has appeared frequently on local and national television shows as well as many national conferences, festivals, and events including “Good Day Atlanta”, the 1996 Olympic Games held in Atlanta GA, The Montreaux Music Festival and The National Black Arts Festival.
Along with all of Jonathan’s National & International appearances, he passionately performs at local churches, local schools, nursing homes, retirement facilities, prisons, substance rehabilitation centers, and community events. Through his music, Jonathan hopes to ignite the passion that is inside others and encourages them to live their life to the fullest and become passionate about what they are on earth to do & become!
Jonathan endorses and plays his Dakota Saxophone model SDA-XG 303 Alto exclusively at all venues and performances.
For further info, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
A Chicago-born beauty, saxophonist, pianist and gifted songwriter who
leads her own dynamic band.
As the youngest of seven, D-Erania grew up listening to her siblings play music by artists like Earth, Wind & Fire, Stevie Wonder and George Clinton. Yet, her earliest influence is her mother, who is a traditional gospel vocalist and musician. "I have very fond memories of my Mother playing the piano or organ, and singing gospel songs to me as a child", she says. "I've been singing and playing piano by ear since the age of three."
Later, her brother's abandoned alto-saxophone became her next musical interest. "I remember hearing Wayne Shorter for the first time. I was seventeen and it was at that moment I decided that I wanted to also play saxophone. After a few years of 'tinkering around' on the sax, I started going out to jazz clubs, to sit-in with bands doing open mics."
In the late 90's, D-Erania began gigging and traveling with various Jazz and R&B bands. She's performed in Asia, Australia, Europe, Canada and Mexico. When she wasn’t traveling, she could be found in church playing the organ.
Still, D-Erania longed to have her own band and to put her songwriting skills to work. "After touring I just wanted to come back to Chicago to focus on creating and performing my own original music." In Spring of 2000, D-Erania put together her own band performing live in and around Chicago, quickly becoming one of Chicago's premier Independent Artists. In 2005 she recorded her first CD, titled "D-Erania’s Offerings of Love", which has received outstanding reviews and includes guest appearances from notable Chicago heavyweights, trumpeter, Orbert Davis and guitarist, Fareed Haque.
"Smooth, sensual saxophone soaring over a bed of warm keyboards and honey-dipped strings, deep-pocketed percussion, and a funky groove", says Bob Davis, CEO of Soul-Patrol.com, to describe D-Erania's style. Since 2012, D-Erania has been the featured artist & musical host for Chicago-land’s premier Soul-Food Restaurant, Chicago’s Home of Chicken & Waffles located in Oak Park Il; and most recently for their newest Evanston location. Her popular Jazz Set, "D-Erania & Friends" features D-Erania with a different band every weekend. Musicians are hand-selected by her and consist of the most talented, world-class and established musicians from Chicago. You will also find D-Erania currently working on her most recent musical project entitled, "Native Beauty", which is an engaging tour-de-force of Jazz, Brazilian and soulful rhythms and free flowing melodies.
Fans call D-Erania the "goddess of sound" because she not only plays saxophone, piano and sings, but her music captivates audiences to the point of being nearly hypnotized. She can grab your attention and then take you someplace with her unique, soulful jazz. Heartfelt and imaginative, D-Erania's music celebrates the richness of Black music; firmly rooted in the R&B tradition of the 70's, her music is romantic and timeless, reflecting the spontaneity of jazz and the distinct vibe of today.
"I have been exclusively playing on my Sax Dakota Straight Alto, and I'm literally in love with it's warm, honest & organic sound. I feel that it has truly become my signature sound."
For more information about D-Erania, visit www.d-erania.com or the D-Erania FaceBook Fan Page. Her CD can be purchased on amazon.com & cdbaby.com.
D-Erania has been recognized as an affluent multi-instrumentalist, performer & song-writer, and has been endorsed by Sax Dakota USA as their first "Chicago Lady of Dakota".
Contact D-Erania at: email@example.com
Sam Morrison is a Jazz Saxophone and flute player/composer/artist whose credits include being a key member of the Miles Davis Band. His performance with Miles at the Newport Jazz Festival & Avery Fisher Hall, were very favorably reviewed in the NY Times and the concert recording was released on the Jazz Masters CD label. “Bootleg” tapes of numerous concert and club performances of the band which included Sam, continue to be sold by many collectors on the internet.
Sam’s recording, "Dune" from that period on Inner City/East Wind records, won critical acclaim in Jazz circles as a ground breaking fusion album. His next album, "Natural Layers" on Chiaroscuro Records, utilized the talents of the extraordinary drummer/producer Narada Michael Walden and incorporated worldwide ’beats in a tapestry of funk, fusion and jazz.
Mr. Morrison has played with many legendary jazz greats like Gil Evans, Al Foster, Buster Williams, Woody Shaw, and Billy Hart. Sam also toured Europe playing at large jazz festivals in Vienna, Nice, Paris, and Stockholm with Pucco and the Latin Soul Brothers. Sam is currently a member of The Children on the Corner band, the electric Miles reunion band featuring bass legend Michael Henderson and Jazz Tabla pioneer Badal Roy. His recent concerts in the last few years include Miles from India in Budapest and a week at Ronnie Scott's in London, Milan, and NYC with Michael Henderson's Electric Miles. He is also featured on Thurman Barker's latest release, "Rediscovered".
Sam studied music at Columbia University in NYC where he performed and sat in regularly at jazz clubs like Slugs, The Village Vanguard and Fillmore East where he spent time with all the legendary rock bands. These influences can all be heard in his latest release, "Miles Away" on Brown Bag Records which features Mark Egan on bass , Joel Rosenblatt on drums, and Mike Wolf on keys. Mr. Morrison's next release Dark Matter is an all sax and flute computer generated electronic music project that has just been released on the HDTT website for 24/96 downloads.
Sam currently resides privately in New York State near Newburg and is currently playing and endorsing a Sax Dakota Straight Soprano Sax: SDSS-1024 exclusively.
With over 20 years of experience, Yancyy is a proven entertainer
for music enthusiasts from many generations. His signature fluid sounds and interpretive mastery are the mélange of refined raw talent, diligent and continued study, with intense passion for music and the listener. Yancyy's impeccable styling and artistic charisma are not confined to genre distinction, enchanting the jazz-heads, serenading classical aficionados, inspiring the ecclesiastics and electrifying pop, rock, funk and hip-hop fans. A native of Detroit, Michigan, Yancyy recalls hearing a saxophone solo in church at the age of 13, and was gripped by its impact on the congregation, captivated by its penetration of the heart and mind. Dawning as a devout humanitarian, he envisioned himself orchestrating this melodious emanation of healing and deliverance, and knew that becoming “one” with this instrument would bring peace and delight to all who listened.
Yancyy’s ambition was so undeniable that his father surprised him with an Alto Sax, and he blossomed overnight as a self-taught prodigy. He joined his high school band, and within two years, renowned classical saxophonist Donald Sinta sponsored Yancyy’s attendance at the prestigious Interlochen Fine Arts Academy. He continued his pursuit of artistic excellence, earning his B.F.A. in performance at the University of Michigan’s acclaimed School of Music. He still remains a faithful academic, amassing a collector’s dream of instruments, equipment and a respectable library of instructive materials. As an accomplished saxophonist, Yancyy often favors audiences with his panache on clarinet, flute and piano. He is also a gifted composer and arranger, contributing keyboards and vocals on his first solo release. He is currently collaborating with a number of talented composers for his second project.
Yancyy has been nominated for GenArt & Hearst Magazine’s Cultural Icon Award and a few of his performance highlights include The Kennedy Center (Washington, D.C.), Voodoo Lounge (Las Vegas, Nevada), Ronnie Scott’s (London, England), Lionel Hampton Jazz Club (Paris, France), Anthology (San diego, California), The Fox Theatre (Detroit, Michigan), Chene Park (Detroit, Michigan) and The High Museum (Atlanta, Georgia) where he was Artist in Residence for two years. Yancyy has been the opening act for scores of contemporary music giants, including Stevie Wonder, Average White Band, Temptations, Neville Brothers, Jean Luc Ponty, George Benson, Four Tops, Yellowjackets, Pieces of A Dream, Earl Klugh, Gerald Levert, Jeffrey Osborne, Atlantic Star, Ohio Players, Kem, as well as peers, Kirk Whalum, Gerald Albright and George Howard.
He is an indelible addition to any act, and has added his captivating sounds to such greats as George Clinton, Will Downing, Howard Hewitt, Marvin Winans, Maysa, Chico DeBarge, Freddie Jackson, Jean Carne, Ray Parker Jr., Calloway Brothers, Billy Paul, Tony Rich, Contours, Adina Howard, Michael Henderson, Gene Dunlap, Marion Meadows, Najee, Ramsey Lewis, Straight Ahead, and many others. Yancyy is also a dynamic motivational speaker, lecturing for Detroit’s Center for Creative Studies, as well as Ford Motor Company’s UAW Adult Education Series. He partners with community, youth and other charitable organizations, and currently sits as Board President of Little Scholars Performing Arts Program. His constitution remains: “I believe music is a spiritual art form that denotes the life and times of our culture. I use music as a medicinal tool for the listener’s soul. From an early age, I knew I was called to create rhythmic vibrations of joy and melodic inspiration. Over the years, I have witnessed music's ability to uplift, motivate, transcend and penetrate the hearts of humanity.”
“Armed with my horn, I will continue to knock down barriers; awaken the spirit and serenade the heart.”
Yancyy endorses and performs exclusively on SAX DAKOTA Straight Alto Sax model:
SDAS-1020 at all venues and performances. He plans to add the Tenor Sax model: SDT-XG-606 to his arsenal
of professional Saxophones.
He can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Along with numerous radio, film, and television credits, PAUL NAVIDAD has dozens of other recording projects under his belt as an award-winning saxophonist, composer, and arranger in California, his native state.
Paul Navidad maintains a busy schedule and performs with a diverse list of musicians from Al Jarreau to Paul Williams to Tennessee Ernie Ford. He has opened for such comedians as Jay Leno, Rich Little, and Jamie Foxx, and has been featured on several soundtracks of films and television shows, including most notably, NBC's Emmy-nominated sitcom "Friends."
He has recorded with Lou Rawls, Deborah Harry, Lisa Loeb, and Isaac Hayes, as well as a special recording with actors George Wendt and Gary Oldman on the Buena Vista Records children's album "A World of Happiness." He was also heavily featured on Lou Rawls final album "Lou Rawls Christmas," on the Time-Life label. He is currently in heavy demand as a performer and writer working worldwide.
Locally, Paul can be seen performing at a number of Southern California Jazz clubs with notable artists Wilton Felder, Jeff Kashiwa, Eric Marienthal, & Rob Mullins. His skills as an improviser have earned him the praises of such Jazz greats as Alan Broadbent, Buddy Collette, Dewey Erney, Kim Richmond, Bud Shank, and Bill Watrous.
This high level profile has earned him the recognition of the International Association of Jazz Education as an Outstanding Soloist along with becoming a member of the faculty of Orange Coast College in the Fall of 2000. He currently oversees Jazz and Commercial Music Studies as well as Music Theory. Paul is also working on his first solo saxophone CD, and a recently released first single as a vocalist entitled "I Won't Let You Down," available on iTunes and Amazon.com.
For more information on Paul, please visit his website at www.paulnavidad.com or can be reached at email: email@example.com. Orange Coast College as Associate Professor of Jazz Music Studies.
Paul Navidad currently plays and endorses the Sax Dakota Straight Alto Saxophone model SDAS-1020 on all recordings and live venues.
Atlanta based saxophonist/vocalist/multi-instrumentalist/producer; Zdany Chisholm is a native of Tampa, Florida. He began his melodic life as a tot beating on pot and pans in his mother's kitchen. Inspired by his musical family, he played his way from the kitchen floor, to churches, all the way to Europe. Every show was an opportunity to exploit his musical talents and further the development of his passion.
Zdany is a graduate of Florida A&M University and a former member of the Marching 100. While residing in Tallahassee, he performed for the mayor, other dignitaries, and the capital city residents with many great musicians, including his own band, Minor7even. Zdany has performed at many weddings, parties, and charity events, like the Big Bend Back to School Community Experience, the Lincoln Center Health Awareness Block Party, MusicFest: Sounds of Hope – sponsored by the Refuge House for Victims of Domestic Violence, Jazz for Justice, a celebratory gala for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and a 2008 Inauguration Gala for President Obama.
He has received numerous awards, nominations and accolades for his outstanding leadership, dedication and superior musicianship of his craft. He was a recipient of the much acclaimed John Phillip Sousa Award and the Gospel Music Workshop of America Award for Musicianship to name a couple. "Only what you do for Christ will last," the humble man quotes his mother.
Zdany’s musical influences are great in number and are not genre specific. He believes that everyone from the “greats” to the “not-so greats” have a voice and something can be learned. However, he does have his list of inspirational favorites.
Zdany is currently the Solo Saxophonist for Cody Chestnutt, whose music blends elements of rock, funk, soul, blues, and hip hop. Zdany recently performed at the legendary 2011 Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, sharing the stage with Larry Graham with Graham Central Station, and Bootsy Collins.
In addition to being featured on several CD projects, he has just released his debut album, Genesis, which highlights his diverse musical and producing interest. The album offers a little something for everyone and will keep you moving and grooving at the same time. The album can be found on his website, Cdbaby, iTunes & Amazon.
Zdany can also be seen performing at numerous local venues in Atlanta, Georgia.
Mr Chisholm plays/endorses Sax Dakota Soprano Sax model SDSS-1024 exclusively.
You can find out more about Zdany at his web site: www.zdanychisholm.com
Phil Ciancio is a true "journeyman" as a multi talented musician performing on Saxophones as well as Flute. His warm/engaging personality makes him a hit with his loyal fans at all venues.
Phil has gone through a real career revitalization since leaving his previous business life as a manufacturing facility owner in favor of a performing artist career with his Saxophones and other woodwinds.
His week is usually made up of teaching, recording, performing and writing compositions for his live performances in the Chicago area. His passionate interest in live performance has made him an “in-demand” player throughout North East Illinois.
His home in Crystal Lake, Illinois has afforded him the advantage of working closely with Sax Dakota personnel as their "In House" clinician for local dealers, schools and churches. Phil has been very successful reaching out to many aspiring Saxophonists by assisting them with their selection of the instrument best suited for their use.
Phil performs exclusively on Dakota models: Soprano Sax SDSS-XG 707 and his favorite Tenor: SDT-1200 in Satin Silver.
You can find out more about Phil on his website: www.movingyoumusically.com
Organizers of the annual Buffalo Music Awards may want to consider renaming its Saxophonist of the Year award the Jack Prybylski Award – in December 2012, Prybylski (pronounced Purr-bill-ski) took home the top honor for the 12th time. “Even though it’s on a regional scale, it’s very flattering to be nominated by your peers,” Prybylski says. And alt-hough musicians nominated artists, the general public selected winners. “It’s equally as flattering that general public thinks enough of you to vote,” Prybylski adds.
It’s not just western New York state that’s hip to Prybylski’s charms on the sax. Thanks to his solo CD, Out of the Box (Innervision), the contemporary jazz world worldwide perked up, too. The CD was Prybylski’s third and strongest CD yet, and was produced by the award-winning team of Rob DeBoer and Tony Grace of the groundbreaking jazz-chill duo Four80East.
“Contemporary jazz is getting kind of mundane with the same artists putting out same overall sound, so I thought I’d break the mold a bit,” Prybylski says. “As a new guy on the block, I also needed to do something to stand out. I’m attracted to Rob and Tony’s music. It’s fresh, innovative, a little edgy – not the polyester pants, white loafer type of sound.” The result is a CD that spotlights Prybylski’s rock and soul background, a little grit meshing with infectious melodies with a touch of European dance vibe.
Although Prybylski wrote most of the music on his first two CDs, he let DeBoer and Grace write or co-write five of Out of the Box’s 10 tracks, enabling him to do what he does best: just play his sax. Those five songs include two that have received plenty of airplay, “Ice Cream” and “Down to It.” Some adventurous radio stations have even picked up Prybylski’s versions of Duran Duran’s “Save a Prayer” and Rod Stewart’s seminal “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy.”
“Everybody does Motown covers, which I love, but I just wanted to be a little different with my rock covers,” Prybylski says. “The Rod Stewart song started as a joke at a show in Reno. Two kids came up to me and asked if I was Rod Stewart (Prybylski’s blond-streaked hair is shaggy and spiky). They wanted my autograph. They said, ‘Do we know any of your songs,’ ha ha.” Inspired by the boys – hey, why not? – Prybylski started playing “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy” live and enjoyed it so much he put his dance-oriented version on Out of the Box.
The Out of the Box CD was well-received by the press and fans. The “Down to It” single hit #1 twice in the weekly and #2 in the year-end Groove Jazz chart. Lynn Briggs, radio veteran and owner of LynnBriggsUnplugged.com declared, "Three words describe saxman Jack Prybylski's latest single … smooth, sexy and sophisticated … a stellar musician, who never disappoints!"
Prybylski’s music story starts in second grade in a Buffalo suburb when his parents, who didn’t particularly want loud drums in the house, urged him to try something else. Prybylski picked the sax because – true story – it had the letter “X” in it. “My dad was an aerospace engineer and I saw a lot of terms with ‘X’ in it, like formulas. So I thought the sax was cool.” Prybylski took to the alto (he now plays four types of sax) and would play saxophone through high school while taking music lessons and performing in local bar bands. “They all had horn sections, and I grew up with Chica-go, Earth, Wind and Fire, and Blood, Sweat and Tears.” Prybylski’s father, meanwhile, also exposed him to jazz and big-band music while Prybylski discovered his jazz-saxophone idols: David Sanborn, Tom Scott and Joe Farrell and Grover Washington Jr. “They were my spiritual leaders and advisors,” he says. “I was one step away from having their pictures on my walls with candles surrounding them.”
Prybylski attended the University of Buffalo (SUNY-Buffalo), earning a bachelor’s degree in music performance and bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music education. He studied with renowned jazz players David Leibman, Tim Price, David Schaivone and Buffalo Philharmonic bass clarinetist/saxophonist Edward Yadzinski. After college, Prybylski began teaching music in public schools, something he’s done ever since. He’s currently an Assistant Director for the University of Buffalo Athletic Bands.
Before beginning his solo career, Prybylski recorded seven albums with a local Buffalo institution, Them Jazzbeards. The eclectic band still plays on the East Coast and is known in some movie-cult circles for its work on the 1995 flick Shadow Creature. “There’s bad acting all over the place, but it’s kind of neat to say I’m on a movie soundtrack,” he says. “I hear the movie’s a cult hit in the Orient.” In addition to providing great music for bad movies, Them Jazzbeards – which plays mostly original material – compelled Prybylski to embark on his solo career. “I saw everyone enjoying the band’s music, and I had mine which is 180 degrees from Them Jazzbeards. I just wanted to put my music out there and see what happened.”
Prybylski’s 2001 debut, Soho Strut, produced the Internet radio single “Mandalay Bay.” Smoothjazz.com President Sandy Shore hailed the CD as "Filling in the cracks between modern jazz and smooth jazz ... Soho Strut is packed full with great compositions, sophisticated arrangements, creative improvisation and stellar musicianship.
"Window Shopping”, released in 2006, employed the talents of acclaimed contemporary jazz guitarist and producer Ken Navarro. Smooth Jazz News magazine named it one of the Top 10 CDs of the year, and Window Shopping would also find favor on several other year-end lists.
Today, Prybylski has his sights on a holiday CD – which he says might incorporate songs from his Polish/Russian background. “I absolutely love playing live,” he says. “I love interacting with the crowd and feeding off their energy. I go into the audience and may end up on a table, who knows? If I can touch somebody in a positive way, I’m happy being a musician and entertainer. That’s what it’s all about.”
Jack exclusively plays and endorses Sax Dakota models: SDA-XG 404 (Alto) and SDA-XG 606 (Tenor) at all venues and recording sessions.
Jack can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit his web site: www.jackprybylski.com
LaDarrel Saxappeal Johnson
LaDarrel Johnson's stated mission is to rekindle the flame between people and music, which is unfortunately, flickering dim. His hopes are to touch people through his music in ways they've yet to experience. With disciplined focus, determination, positive energy, love, and a passion deeper than he can explain, he uses his horn to tell stories, state his opinions, and celebrate the gift of music through love.
SAXAPPEAL: This name, unto itself, brings a new image to the music arena. This young saxophonist, born and raised in Detroit, has been playing since the age of 7. In fact, this young talent, barely able to stand on his own two feet, let alone fly solo, was pushed out of the nest (musically speaking), after a mere 6 months of playing his horn. Now, this extraordinary 27-year-old musician brings joy, love, pain, passion and many more sensations to the stage during his dazzling performances. Comfortably known as 'Sax', he has scoped out his soaring territory while setting new & higher sights.
Now, a noted Grammy nominated recording artist, and a 2013 Crain's Detroit Business "20 in their 20's" Award recipient, this ambitious young artist has traveled from coast to coast, performing from intimate venues in Detroit, to large scale events in Los Angeles, Atlanta, New York, and Europe.
His first venue in New York was to perform at the legendary Carnegie Hall at the age of 17. Saxappeal has also been performing with Koch Records' recording artist, Dwele (a Detroit native musician) since 2005. Saxappeal is currently touring with R & B artist, K'Jon, and Grammy nominated Indie-Soul artist, Eric Roberson.
He also has solid endorsement agreements with, Sax Dakota, NovaBrown accessories (www.NovaBrown.com) Cintron Energy Drink (www.cintronbeveragegroup.com), Harry Hartmann's Fiberreed (www.Fiberreed.com) & Drake Mouthpieces. (www.drakemouthpieces.com) In efforts to form his own style and promote his performing artistry through these major music industry companies.
LaDarrel's 'SaxSoul' music is diverse with a blend of jazz, hip-hop, soul, and R & B. This young artist has truly been humbled and challenged by these opportunities and eagerly awaits more.
LaDarrel performs exclusively on Dakota Sax Models SDT-XG 505 Tenor Sax & SDA-1000 Alto Sax in Gray Onyx finish.
You can contact "SAXAPPEAL" at: email@example.com
Getting to know Saxappeal: https://vimeo.com/59457740 Saxappeal performing "It's You" Live: https://vimeo.com/66345844
Washington, DC's own saxophone phenomenon Brian Lenair is the latest edition to the Sax Dakota family. He is a musically gifted sax player who treats the saxophone as an extension of himself. His love of music began at the age of eight with his most profound influence, his Dad, who is also a talented saxophonist. His first music instructor encouraged his passion for music and thus began the career of "SAXYB"!
Brian formed his first band called "41/2 Hours" and after four years with the group, he joined "Spur of the Moment", a popular Washington, DC-based band. As the front man for over 15 years, he astounded audiences with his showmanship and pure talent performing on his saxophone. During that time, the band recorded two CDs, which prominently featured Brian's talent as a saxophonist and composer. Despite the growing success of "Spur of the Moment", he moved forward to pursue a solo career. In 2004, he produced his first CD entitled "The Journey". Creating this CD gave Brian the opportunity to showcase his talents as an extraordinary saxophonist, producer, entertainer, and songwriter.
Today, with over 25 successful years in the music industry, he is currently an independent recording jazz artist wowing audiences with his musical genius across the country! Brian has performed with national recording greats like, Will Downing, Maysa, Jean Carne, Billy Paul, Angela Bofill, Christopher Williams, Miki Howard, Glenn Jones, Al Jarreau, Tony Terry, Pieces of a Dream, Miles Jay, Grover Washington, Jr., Peabo Bryson, George Benson, the late Vesta and Phyllis Hyman plus many more.
Brian's last CD project "Eye of the Storm", shows his enormous talent as a supreme saxophonist. He is a consummate professional, and his magnificent writing, composing and artistry has helped to facilitate this project to chart tremendously well on the smooth jazz circuit. Along with his current production, Brian has a total of five independent CD projects, including "The Journey, Underground" (Live), "Inspirations Volume 1" and "A Saxy Christmas".
Brian effortlessly performs with a straight sax package, Straight Alto (SDAS-1020), Straight Tenor (SDTS-1022), Straight Soprano (SDSS-1024). Brian's creativity with the sax continues to astonish audiences when he plays two Saxes simultaneously.
"I believe that music gives us meaning and purpose. It is one of mankind’s sources of love, truth, imagination, reflection and discovery", says Brian. He has a strong passion for jazz education for youth and whenever possible, enjoys giving back by engaging in local community programs and events that spotlight music appreciation.
One of the programs that has approached Brian is VH1's Save the Music Foundation, which he enthusiastically offers his support in his hometown of Washington, DC.
Every breath he takes and every note he plays is to the glory of God!
You can contact Brian at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Brian's latest live performance event can be viewed: www.youtube.com
His SeaBreeze interview: Brian Lenair - Seabreeze Jazz Festival 2013
Mr. Chris Mickel, Saxophonist and music educator, currently resides in his hometown of Charleston, West Virginia. He has been playing saxophone for over 25 years, having studied jazz and classical performance. He is a versatile musician and has experience performing in many settings from rock and jazz to chamber music and solo classical repertoire.
He earned a Bachelor of Science in Music Education from West Virginia State University in 1999, a Master of Music in Saxophone Performance from the University of Louisville in 2002, and a Doctor of Musical arts degree in saxophone performance from West Virginia University in 2011.
He has studied saxophone with the following teachers: Michael Ibrahim, Morgantown, WV (2008 – 2011); David Wright, Morgantown, WV (2007 – 2008); John Moore, Louisville, KY (2001 – 2002); Michael Tracy, Louisville, KY (2000 – 2001); Gary Stringer, Charleston, WV (1996 – 1999); and Mel Gillespie, Charleston, WV (1992 – 1996).
His current musical activities include his private saxophone studio and his work with the C2J2 Quartet based in Charleston, WV. He has also recorded two CD's with the C2J2 Quartet: a self-titled studio recording which is currently available through Kunaki CD distribution and a live recording entitled "Live @ the Glass".
He currently has new projects in the works in the form of new studio releases with C2J2 and a classical saxophone recording which with pianist Victor Chan.
Some of his notable performances are:
Participation in various concerts with the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra; performed as a soloist at the 2009 Region 8 conference of the North American Saxophone Alliance; played the lead tenor saxophone chair in the 2009 Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Jazz Orchestra; performed as a soloist at the 2009 Conference for the Society for Electro-Acoustic Music in the United States; performed as a soloist at the 2010 National Conference for the North American Saxophone Alliance; performed as featured soloist on faculty recitals and with the Jazz Ensemble at West Virginia State University; performed as featured soloist and accompanist on numerous student recitals and with the West Virginia University Big Band, Little Big Band, Saxophone Quartet, and various other ensembles.
Chris is an Endorsing Artist for Sax Dakota and plays Tenor Sax Model SDT-XG 606 exclusively.
Dr. Mickel has two CDs available through Kunaki Distribution: "C2J2" and "C2J2: Live @ The Glass". You can contact Him at his web site: www.chrismickel.com where you can learn more about him, listen to recordings, and view live performances.
Talented Saxophonist Eddie Berg is a multi-instrumentalist/vocalist/composer born and raised on Long Island, New York. He is a graduate of Newfield high school in Selden, New York where his music education was focused on classical and jazz. His performing skills not only include tenor, alto, soprano, and baritone saxophones, but extend into keyboards, percussion and EWI (electronic wind instrument.) His music interest continues to be focused in traditional and contemporary Jazz to R&B, Blues, Funk, and Inspirational Music.
Eddie’s attraction to music started at an early age when he discovered the sound of saxophone as he listened to his dad spinning 78 rpms from the 50s. His most memorable song was Yakety Yak, by the Coasters, featuring King Curtis on tenor. Eddie was later introduced to the music of Boots Randolph where he realized his own creative ability to turn original vocal songs into his own unique style. Eddie was an active member of concert, jazz and marching bands throughout school while also performing in competitions outside of school.
Eddie’s passion for contemporary jazz and live performance has been greatly influenced by Richard Elliot along with others such as, Grover Washington, Everette Harp, and Euge Groove. His list goes on to include many other talented high profile Sax celebrities.
Eddie has and continues to perform with local bands throughout the New York Metropolitan area in addition to his solo projects. Eddie performs at many local clubs, parties, charity events and gives back generously to the community such as schools and local senior centers. "It's all about giving back and keeping music alive in the hearts from young students to senior adults", says Eddie.
His craft also includes credit as a session musician and frequent "first call" stand-in for live performances. His interaction with the audience brings the show to a new level. His multi instrument talent can be seen when he performs, where he also contributes to playing keys, percussion and EWI instruments in addition to his saxophones. Eddie is working on his debut release, “Generations, From the Heart”, which offers music of all Generations. Influenced by past artists, this music will inspire the soul.
Eddie exclusively plays his custom made Sax Dakota Tenor/Alto and his one-of- kind Raw unfinished Straight Soprano at all performance venues and recordings.
Ed Berg can be reached at email@example.com
Ray Silkman has been touted as one of the best saxmen in the business.
Emerging from humble beginnings, Ray Silkman has persevered through the hardest of times to be recognized as a viable force in the music industry. Silkman began playing the saxophone at the age of 12 in an effort to feel a connection with the father that he never knew. His love for the craft inspired him to practice daily and achieve first chair ranking in Middle School and throughout college.
Growing up in a struggling household, he found his greatest inspiration to be his mother who told him "you can do anything that you put your mind to". Silkman moved to Chicago shortly after his mother's death where he got his first break performing in a fashion show entitled OGGI, interpreted "Live for the day".
Other opportunities followed, including a principle role in a recurring Chicago HMO commercial. Since those lonely and cold days performing on street corners, Ray Silkman has gone on to perform at countless clubs, festivals and special events in and around the Chicagoland area. His many performances at venues such as Chicago's United Center, Donald E Stevens Convention Center, Poplar Creek and virtually every major jazz club in Chicago over the past 17 years attest to his artistic skills, and in 2008 he was was asked to perform at the inauguration of President Barack Obama. Ray has appeared on BET television’s Bet On Jazz Series and continues to perform the national anthem “live” for the Chicago Bulls, Bears and White Sox games.
Ray has independently released 5 CDs including his signature work "Sound Check" which features the hit single "So Saxual". “Sound Check” has received national and international acclaim as an epic work producing multiple hit songs which still receive airplay on public and NIC radio stations across the US. Jazz FM in Europe has featured many of Ray's tracks on their evening jazz show and “So Saxual” still receives major airplay here in the States.
Ray has opened for jazz greats David Sanborn, Kenny G, George Benson, Keiko Matsui, Tom Scott and the late great Art Porter. Silkman has performed in other major venues, i e; the Detroit Opera House, The Los Angeles Convention Center, Walt Disney's Pleasure Island & The Hilton Hotel Niagra Falls. He also received awards and honors from Midwest Magazines Artist of the Year 2005, and the Chicago Jazz Legends Award 2010. Silkman's sound has been described as incomparable by the late great Benny Carter who stated "this young man is sure to go places, I can feel his music".
Silkman's signature sound is accented by rich melodic tones and an undeniable command of his instrument. With a style that is fresh and literally on the verge of soaring, one can see why the best way to explain it is "the sound of Ray Silkman's soul pouring through his sax". The Chicago Sun Times exclaims "Silkman's sound is hypnotic to say the least". As a continuously growing and developing artist Ray Silkman is poised to continue contributing to the world of contemporary jazz and fusion music in a way that is uniquely recognized as definitive and distinct. His latest offering "Desire" has already started quite a buz as Silkman wrote, produced, composed and performed the majority of the music on the newly released CD. “Desire” as well as “Heartbeat”, “Stepper's Serenade”, “SoundCheck” and “A View of Love” are all available on CDbaby and iTunes exclusively.
Ray exclusively plays and endorses his custom made Dakota Alto Sax model SDA-XG 303.
For more information about about Ray, please contact: Silkscreen Productions, 708-439-8004, www.raysilkman.com
Nashville based saxophonist/vocalist/multi-instrumentalist; Pattie Cossentino is a native of Baltimore, Maryland. Pattie earned her Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Maryland at College Park. She also completed graduate studies at the University of North Texas. Pattie competed in regional and national competitions winning first place in the Baltimore Music Club Competition, first place in the University of Maryland Undergraduate Solo Competition and was a finalist in the Baltimore Symphony Young Soloists Competition as an alto saxophonist. As an accomplished pianist/organist, she also served as Minister of Music and organist/choir director at many churches. Additionally, Pattie was saxophone instructor at Albright College in Reading, PA.
In 2007, Pattie released her first CD as a solo artist. Pattie Cossentinos "Invitation" CD spent 8 weeks on the National Jazz Top 40 chart and peaked at #22 in the nation in 2008. The CD was also featured on National Public Radio's nationally syndicated show, "Jazz With Bob Parlocha" Top 40 CD list in 2008 as well. "Invitation:" A marvelous debut disk, revealing a seasoned singer & multi-instrumentalist named Pattie Cossentino.
Greg Lee Jazz-89 WMOT Nashville said of "Invitation;" "Here's YOUR invitation to discover a worthy artist youll want to hear more from!" Jazz Review said of "Invitation :"Pattie Cossentino delivers a refreshing dish of originals, standards, and straight ahead jazz in Latin and swing styles on her debut CD Invitation." "The versatile Nashville-based Cossentino is blessed with a warm and inviting singing voice that she compliments with her flute, and the soprano, alto, tenor, and bari saxophones. But its Cossentinos instrumental work that makes these tunes come alive."
All About Jazzs "Sisterhood of Saxophone Players" said of "Invitation : "Pattie Cossentino proves to be the most fully realized of our women saxophonists, playing all of the flavors of sax plus flute. Cossentino proves to have an embarrassment of riches." Fritz the Nite Owl Jazz said of "Invitation; "Overall, the CD encompasses a good sampling of vocal and instrumental jazz, including straight ahead, standards, Latin, and swing – definitely an impressive introduction to a new rising star in the always-evolving world of jazz."
She has been featured in interviews and podcasts on many of the nation’s leading jazz stations and was featured in March 2009 as part of "Women in Jazz" on "The Jazz Life" whose focus is on original new music and new releases from independent jazz record labels and is available on I-Tunes. In 2011, her original instrumental tune "Danza Por Belle" was chosen to be part a "Jazz of Music City…which features all original jazz from 10 of Nashville’s top jazz artists and received national acclaim.
Pattie has performed with David "Fathead" Newman, Al Vizutti, Randy Brecker, Steve Houghton, Chris Vadala, Cliff Richard and Michele Bell from 5th Dimension fame as well as with the Earl Gaines Band, Reading Civic Opera Orchestra, Nashville Jazz Orchestra, NPR’s "Live in Studio C" on WPLN Radio, The Bo Thorpe Orchestra, Teri Reid & Girltalk, The Nashville Saxophone Quartet, Sumner County Symphony, Jackson Symphony Orchestra as a featured soloist, Opryland Hotel and on the General Jackson Showboat.
She has also performed on many prestigious cruise lines as a head line performer. Pattie's jazz quartet has recently been featured at the Nashville Jazz Series-Belle Meade "Jazz on the Lawn," Watertown Jazz Festival, Franklin Jazz Festival, Murfreesboro Main Street Jazz Fest, Cookeville Summer Music Series, Wine on the River & Taste of Music City. In demand as a studio musician, her jazz quartet is a main stay on the local jazz scene in Nashville and is regularly featured at many jazz festivals and concerts throughout the southeast.
Go to www.pattiecossentino.com, CD Baby, Amazon or I-tunes to purchase her CD.
Pattie exclusively plays her Sax Dakota Tenor Sax model SDT-1200 with Satin Silver finish and 18K Gold trim at all performance venues.
"From King Curtis to Nat King Cole". Thats Michael Huletts creed. "Diversity is a spice of life and I find inspiration from all genres of music, though Jazz is my main love", he proclaims. "The truth is...inspiration can come from anywhere - the tweet of a bird, the pounding at a construction site, even. Charlie Parker was one of Jazzs great innovators and he absorbed classical music and incorporated itinto his playing. Its understood that he even started getting into Vareses electronic music before he died."
Michael finds that that kind of absorbtion perpetuates his own creativity. "My focus now is on my saxophone and even my vocals", he says. In his past he was a mellophone soloist in two top-12 World Class Drum and Bugle Corps, but no longer attends to the brass. "Ive found myself focusing on my first and true love, the saxophone. The singing came out of necessity, but thats a whole other story", he declares.
His musical experiences have taken him around many musical genres (Straight-ahead, Smooth, Rock, Reggae, Pop), but Jazz has always come him with all those genres. Hes recorded with Grammy-winning record producer Jon Keane of R.E.M. and Widespead Panic fame. "I grew quite a bit from what I learned during that time", he says." I can say the same about my experiences with playing with the late Dr. Billy Taylor, the Four Tops and Cab Calloway."
Born and raised in the Georgias Golden Isles area (Brunswick, St. Simons & Jekyll Islands) Mike Huletts heartfelt soulful vocals combined with his smooth yet smokin jazz and R&B stylings on sax make him a favorite entertainer.
Michael has done many charity events, like the Help Haiti Concert that brought in $370,000.00 of medical supplies for the earthquake victims. Other events are Relay for Life, Bark for Life, Hart Foundation, and many more. "Its important to me to give back to the world. If in a position to help were somewhat obligated at times. We never know when or if well need that kind of assistance." His newest project is getting local musicians to donate their old, replaced instruments to local schools so the under priviledged kids who can not afford instruments will have a chance to pursue their passion for music.
Michael has recently relased his studio CD titled "4 the Love of You". With great current instrumental tunes, and of course a couple of vocal tracks thrown in the mix.
Michael currently has 4 CDs out, 1st is Michael Hulett, 2nd, At it Again, 3rd After Dark, and of course the latest 4 the Love of You. He also has a Christmas CD that is only available during the Holidays.
Michael plays his Sax Dakota Alto Sax model SD-XG 303 exclusively at all events and venues.
Over the course of 20 years, a dozen albums, and innumerable performances at top New York jazz venues and festivals, saxophonist Chris Kelsey has established himself as one of the most visionary improvisers and band leaders on the contemporary scene. Called "a provocateur in the best sense of the term: a player (and writer) who thrives on pushing buttons," by Derek Taylor of All About Jazz, and "at the forefront of the fiery reedists today," by Gapplegate Music Review, Kelsey’s music follows in the tradition of individualism and innovation that has long distinguished the greatest jazz artists, from Beiderbecke to Bird to Miles and Ornette. Kelsey’s unique concoction of the modern and post-modern results in music that defies easy description; music inevitably characterized by unlimited imagination and unfiltered intensity.
Kelsey began playing alto sax at the age of ten in his home state of Oklahoma. After graduating with a Bachelors of Music Education from the University of Central Oklahoma, Kelsey moved to New York City, where he refined and expanded the performing career he’d begun as a student. He recorded his first album, Stomp Own It, in 1993 for his own Saxofonis Music label. A series of CDs on the CIMP label followed, featuring such top-rank NYC experimental jazz musicians as Steve Swell, Dominic Duval, Jay Rosen, and Francois Grillot. Kelseys bands have played many of New Yorks most important venues for jazz and new music, including the Knitting Factory, Roulette Intermedia, P.S. 122, CBs 313, and many others. Hes also played at many of the citys top summer festivals, including the Knits "What is Jazz? Festival; also the Bell Atlantic, Heineken, and Texaco New York Jazz Festivals. Kelsey began a parallel career as a music journalist in the mid 90s, contributing to such publications as Jazziz, JazzTimes, The All Music Guide to Jazz, and others, as well as editing the website Jazz.com with author/pianist Ted Gioia.
Kelseys most recent album also is also his oldest; Stutches, on the Unseen Rain label, was recorded in 1991 but released for the first time in 2011. Upcoming projects include an album by Happy House, a quartet he co-leads with the trombonist Pat Hall and devoted to reinterpreting the compositions of Ornette Coleman. Kelseys group Where Fakebooks Fear to Tread interprets his original tunes, and masterpieces by underappreciated composer/performers of the 70s and 80s. An ensemble inspired by the electronic music of Miles Davis is also in the works.
Kelsey lives in Pawling, in Dutchess County, New York. He and his wife Lisa are parents of two children, son Jasper and daughter Meret.
Chris performs exclusively with Dakota Sax models Straight Alto and Soprano Saxophones.
Gareth 'Big G' Lumbers
Gareth Lumbers was born and raised in the English countryside and was given a Clarinet on his 10th birthday before moving onto the Saxophone at the age of 12. During school, he became more involved in many of the ensembles offered. At the end of his schooling, he decided that his love of jazz and performing meant only one thing: This was what he had to do. After earning a music diploma at Colchester institute, he moved to London to pursue and train for a career in music at the prestigious Guildhall School of Music and Drama and studied under Jean Toussaint and Gary Keller among many others.
After leaving college, Gareth performed with a variety of professional bands, touring and sessions. These included the British European Jazz Collective Tour, Pink Fraud (UK's #1 Pink Floyd Tribute) and the Briefcase Blues Brothers in addition to his own quintet playing at the famous 606 Jazz Club. Gareth is currently performing with different projects, one of which is the top swing group "Pinstripe Suit" led by jazz singer/pianist Robin Philips, who can be seen performing in Europe as well as residency at London’s top new music venue "Nightjar".
As a Saxophonist, Gareth has been involved in radio, film, recording and TV credits with many groups in the UK including sessions for Channel 4, ITV, BBC, EMI and WARNER Bros.
Recent TV appearances in the UK include the hit show "The Only Way is Essex LIVE" and "The Only Way is Essex Mas", on ITV2 and was featured on Jazz FM on their Discovery Show alongside UK singer pianist Robin Philips in 2012.
During the past couple of years, Gareth has been a part of the reunion of 80's sensation "Nick Heyward" and "Haircut 100", with Gareth playing the "O2 Indigo, London" while on their comeback tour and his horn section, "The Alpha Horns" who have recorded with ABBEY ROAD on the EMI label.
In 2012 he headed to the REWIND FESTIVAL, in Henley on Thames. There, Gareth and the band played to a crowd of 50,000, during the festival he was lucky enough to meet and play with Billy Ocean and his band. "HAIRCUTS 100" are currently recording in the studio for their new and much awaited album! Gareth has worked at and continues to do so at many of the Park Lane hotels including The Dorchester, Claridge's and now a regular performer at the world famous Beaufort Bar in The Savoy Hotel.
As a committed educator Gareth, has been privileged to teach Saxophone and Jazz Studies at some of the UK's oldest and prestigious private music schools including "Tonbridge Boys School 1553", "Loughborugh Endowed Schools" founded in 1495, "Uppingham and Oakham School" both founded in 1584, and perhaps the oldest institution, "Kings School" in Canterbury.
British artist and music critic, Nick Heyward had this to say about Gareth. "Bold as brass and simply the best!"
Gareth is currently recording his own material and arrangements for the pending release of his first album under his name.
Gareth plays and promotes the SDT XG-606 Dakota Tenor Saxophone exclusively at all his shows, gigs, sessions and clinic/workshops.
Gareth can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org or you can visit his site at www.garethlumbersuk.com
Doug Webb was born in Chicago and moved to California at the age of 3. He is a graduate of Edison high school in Huntington Beach, CA and received a Bachelor of Music from Boston’s Berklee College of Music. He began playing the clarinet at the age of 8 and added saxophone and flute at 15. He lives in Los Angeles with his beautiful wife Alex and his son, Ryan.
Over his career Webb has played and recorded with such notable talents as Horace Silver, Freddie Hubbard, Sal Marquez, Stanley Clarke, Quincy Jones, Mat Marucci, Kyle Eastwood, Billy Childs, Rod Stewart, Carly Simon, Art Davis, Kenny Rogers, Bonnie Raitt, and Pancho Sanchez. He played with the house band for the Dennis Miller TV show, the Jimmy Cleveland orchestra and continues to tour with the Doc Severinsen big band. He has recorded music for hundreds of movies and television programs, including playing the saxophone of Lisa in the popular television show The Simpsons. He solos on the sound track for Mystic River and Million Dollar Baby. Webb has been featured on over 150 jazz recordings.
Doug plays.... soprillo, sopranino, C soprano, soprano, slide soprano, swanee, saxello, F mezzo soprano, alto, stritch, C melody, tenor, straight tenor, baritone, bass, cortrabass and tubax saxophones... piccolo, Eb, Db, C, G, bass and contrabass flutes..and almost every size ever made of every other woodwind listed in wikipedia under woodwinds...including sarrusophones and renaissance and baroque woodwinds, double reeds...14 sizes of clarinets...and ethnic woodwinds from every region of the world.
Doug Webb endorses and plays SDTS-1022 DAKOTA STRAIGHT TENOR SAXOPHONE exclusively at all performance venues and clinics.
Deon Yates grew up on the East Side of Detroit where he was introduced to jazz by teachers Donald Washington and Hosea Taylor. Deon quickly became an accomplished woodwind player proficient in both jazz and classical music. One of the first gigs Deon landed was with Jazz Drummer Leonard King (James Carter Organ Trio), at the age of 16, along with band mates Regina Carter: Violin and Rodney Whitaker: Bass. Deon was nominated for an Emmy Award for original music he produced for a PBS Television program in 2001, and has performed as a special guest on concerts with Rick Braun, Richard Elliot, Alexander Zonjic, Rodney Whitaker, James Carter, Roy Brooks, Marcus Belgrave, Kem, Dwele, Gerald Veasley, Clarence Carter, Kirk Whalum, The Floaters and The Contours . With the “DYJII”I, Deon brings you traditional jazz style with a contemporary twist.
“SPOTLIGHT”, an outstanding new project from World-class Detroit saxophonist Deon Yates delivers big-time on talent and performance. Deon’s playing sparkles like a new diamond on 10 compelling songs. He brings in guests Nick Colionne, Maysa, and fellow Detroiter Lin Rountree to compliment his own impressive jazz chops. This is a well rounded selection of original tracks ranging from soothing/romantic to lively/exhilarating. When you listen to Colionne’s work on the energetic, “Use to Be,” Maysa’s alluring vocals on “Look How Far We’ve Come,” and Rountree’s delicious trumpet work on the brand new single,“Resaxation,” you’ll hear why Emmy-nominated Deon Yates is fast becoming one of the most sought-after emerging talents in jazz today. As a performer and a composer/producer. you’ll definitely want to brighten up your listening pleasure by owning ”SPOTLIGHT! ~SCOTT O'BRIEN”
His current CD "Spotlight" is available on cdbaby.com, iTunes and Amazon.com featuring chart topping Smooth Jazz guitarist Nick Colionne, vocalist Maysa Leak (Incognito), and Detroit “Soul Trumpeter” Lin Rountree. Be sure to look for Deon around town and abroad.
Deon has been recognized as an affluent instrumentalist and performer by some of the top music manufacturers in the country with endorsements from industry leaders Sax Dakota U.S.A., Theo Wanne (Mouthpieces) and AMT Microphones Deon has proven himself to be a world class artist.
Deon says: “My Dakota Saxes have helped bring my sound to "another higher level of excellence."
Deon exclusively plays Dakota Sax models: SDT-1200 TENOR, SDA-1000 ALTO and SDSC-909 his custom made Silver plated Curve Soprano.
Curtis Brooks just released his new CD "Relax" which embodies a new model of next generation leadership that merges INSPIRATION FROM THE PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE into one dynamic calling. His love for people ignites his passion to utilize the powerful platform of music to positively touch and transform the lives of people all over the world.
Curtis Brooks; born Curtis Mark McCowen, Jr., had his first encounter with a saxophone at age 8 while in the 4th grade. The band teacher visited his class and said "If you join the band you can get out of class." Out of class sounded like a great idea to young Curtis so he joined the school band, not knowing that this would soon become his passion. Now twelve years later he’s being called the new generation of smooth jazz; a child prodigy! There's nothing typical about him. In person and on stage, he's got a spunky panache, but it's laced with a timeless elegance. Curtis easily echo's a Motown bebop soul with a slight nod to nineties hip-hop; while staying true to his jazz roots as a student of the Warren Hill Jazz Summit & Berkeley College of Music. He's a visionary, rapidly becoming a prominent sought-after voice of vision, hope and purpose to Millennials.
Saxophonist, composer, and producer, Curtis Brooks plays by his own rules. Blessed with an astounding voice and natural knack for a hook via his saxophone, he’s redefining what's possible within smooth jazz.
His current accomplishments include:
Cancun Jazz Festival 2015
Moreno Valley Jazz Festival 2015
Walt Disney Concert Hall 2014
Spaghettini's Seal Beach
Humphrey's Backstage Live
San Diego Jazz Fest 2013, 2014
Arizona Jazz Festival 2014
Las Vegas Jazz Festival 2013
Warren Hill Sax Summit
Parris Lake 1st annual Jazz Festival
Mount Rubidoux Manor
The Inland Empire Black Chamber of Commerce
Grand Opening of Rialto Walgreens
Habitat for Humanity United Way
National Association of Negro Musicians (NANM)
Duke Ellington Society
Riverside Museum of Art
Compton Conservatory of Music "Big Band"
Champions of Caring Connections Inc.
Ability Counts, Inc.
Music Changing lives Organization
Many Churches in the Inland Empire and
Greater Los Angeles Areas Honey Hollow Elementary School
Guest saxophonist at Landmark Middle School
Perris Elementary School Distract
The Winfindel House
Zeta Rho Chapter Omega PSI PHI Fraternity
Ronald McDonald's Red Shoes Shindig
Talking Smooth Jazz
Ms. Audrey's House (Internet Radio)
The Press-Enterprise Inland Scene Magazine
Smooth Jazz Magazine
Chords and Vines
Smooth Saturday's with Ayshag
Curtis endorses Sax Dakota saxophones.
Follow him: CurtisBrooksSax@GMAIL.COM
Facebook: Curtis Brooks
Youtube: Saxophonist Curtis Brooks
FOR BOOKING CALL: 951-515-4894
Born in Tyler, Texas and raised in Houston, Theresa Grayson began playing piano and sax (among other woodwind instruments) in fourth grade and enjoyed an encouraging stream of accolades for her outstanding musicianship throughout grade school. Building a musical foundation on regular performances at church beginning at age 12, she further honed her musical skills and developed her passion under the tutelage of internationally known instructors/musicians Chuck Nolan, Dr. Woody Witt and Dr. Rod Cannon of Sam Houston State University and North Texas University—where she earned a degree in music performance and jazz studies. Grayson continued her education with two master’s degrees with an emphasis in music education and leadership. She plans to continue her studies to earn her doctorate degree. She has been a renowned music educator since the early 2000s, first as an orchestra director at a middle school and currently teaching music at an elementary school in Ft. Bend County.
After drawing on her extensive church music background to record her inspirational instrumental debut It's All About You, Grayson –a longtime first call side musician - tapped renowned gospel and jazz pianist and multi-instrumentalist Terence Fisher—a musical mainstay in both Shreveport and Houston—to help her take her urban jazz game to the next level. On her second solo release, Live2Love, which spawned the successfully charting radio singles “Afterthoughts” and a cover of Maroon 5’s “Moves Like Jagger”, the multi-talented Grayson showcased her versatile skills on soprano and tenor sax and flute along with her soulful lead vocals on several tracks. The album blended everything from gospel, pop and R&B to blues, calypso, Latin and classical music into her unique brand of cutting edge contemporary jazz.
Expanding her palette of world music colors considerably, Grayson draws on her 10 years of teaching elementary school students about music from around the world – and the school’s unique celebration “International Day” - to create a freewheeling, global fusion vibe full of exciting cultural explorations and musical surprises on her latest full-length collection World Blue. Playing soprano and tenor sax and flute and singing – and inviting high profile guests like saxophonist Marion Meadows and violinist Michael Ward to jam along – Grayson fashions excursions to Asia, Africa, India, Latin America and Europe. She also explores multiple facets of jazz, from contemporary urban to straight-ahead trio jazz. Complementing ten originals, she creates powerhouse covers of Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive” (the first single), the Latin pop standard “Sway” and a dramatic, thematically appropriate re-imagining of “We Are The World”, featuring a 40 piece children’s choir and an 80 piece adult church choir.
While embarking on her solo career, the Texas based saxtress has performed in her hometown of Houston and in most of the state’s major cities with her own band and two renowned cover ensembles. She’s since shared the stage and opened for notable contemporary jazz stars like Peter White, Marion Meadows, Mindi Abair and Ronnie Laws as well as vocalists Michael Bolton and Will Downing. Over the years, Grayson has performed at the Third Annual Soul Fest in Austin, Texas, Beaumont Jazz Festival, Red Cat Jazz Festival, Idyllwild Jazz Festival, Zachary Breaux Jazz Festival, Women In Jazz, AFRAM Festival, Baltimore, MD, Jeff Majors Homeless Tour, One Love Cruise, Yolanda Adams Wellness Tour, Lamp Lighters Awards, KHOU Great Day Houston, Channel 26 Fox Rocks Live, Music World’s House of Dereon, Dr. Bobby Jones Gospel Artist Showcase, The House of Blues and Houston International Jazz Festival.
Since the release of Live2Love in 2013, she has also performed at the KTSU Jazz Appreciation concert (Texas Southern University), Red Cat Jazz Festival at Moody Gardens in Galveston (on a bill with Hiroshima, Mike Phillips and Abair), Jokes and Jazz in Dotham, AL and two events for Organo Gold in St. Louis. Grayson has also played at Sweetie Pie’s in St. Louis, which has been featured on Oprah Winfrey’s OWN Network. In addition, she performed at the wedding of former Miss USA Crystle Stewart and international model Max Sebechts.
From the socially conscious, spoken word intro on the jazzy grooving opening track “Atmosphere” through the multi-cultural fusion of the closer “World Roll Kall” (featuring chanting vocals, Eastern instrumentation, African percussion, Latin guitar, violin and tropical vibes), Theresa Grayson devotes herself to a mission to make World Blue a true global journey celebrating the multi-cultural magic of music. Her exciting and inspiring “world tour” begins with stops in Eastern Asia, with “Crane’s Dance,” an atmospheric piece featuring a synth koto and lead flute melody; France, for “Je t’adore”, a lush, soulful and exotic French language ballad sung beautifully by Grayson; and India, for a sensual swirl of soulful soprano sax, percussive intensity and hypnotic chants. After the funky, in the pocket urban jazz tune “Playing with Jas” and a free-spirited, mystical and muscular twist on “Radioactive”, the saxophonist jets to Africa for the heavily soundscaped, jungle chant driven “Sisi Ni Moja,” which floats her whimsical soprano sax melody over deep native grooves.
Next, she’s out for some tropical fun, splashing into salsa-land for a rousing cover of “Sway” (originally popularized by Dean Martin) and heading down to Jamaica for the soulful reggae-jazz romp “The Sun Still Shines”. The thumping, discofied Euro-tech jazz tune “Tranz4Nations” emerged from the Crystal Stewart wedding, when it was suggested that Grayson play sax over the DJ’s heavy beats. After the graceful and elegant soprano driven jazz quartet ballad “Twenty 5 Seven”, Grayson wraps World Blue with a bang, preceding “World Roll Kall” by taking on the Quincy Jones role (along with producer Terence Fisher) to oversee the choirs and multi-textured instrumentation on “We Are The World.”
“I hereby nominate Theresa Grayson for global music ambassador! With World Blue, the multi-talented composer, saxophonist, singer and flutist expands upon the ambition of her multi-genre breakthrough Live2Love with a powerful, compelling set of songs that redefines the often-overused phrase “musical journey”. While offering just enough jazz and a recent pop/rock cover to remind us of her musical roots, she stamps a passport for a whirlwind of continents and cultures that allow her to embark on fun and inspiring, not to mention wildly unexpected, travel adventures. More than just a lively, eclectic musical sojourn, World Blue is highly spiritual, celebrating our common humanity while accenting our diverse approaches to music based on cultural influences. Speaking her mission statement about practicing more patience, kindness and love for one another at the start, she spends the next hour showing just how important music is in helping us achieve this. With dynamic production and instantly infectious songs throughout, it’s nothing short of a global fusion masterpiece.” – Jonathan Widran
Theresa plays exclusive with SAX DAKOTA Straight Tenor Sax model: SDTS-1022
BOOKINGS: email@example.com / phone: 832-795-6496
Saxophonist Skinny Williams is an accomplished instrumentalist, a savvy composer, and an electrifying performer who — since the release of his first solo album in 1999 — has created a series of recordings that have made him a distinctive talent in the realm of contemporary jazz. Through his noteworthy combination of earthy grooves and soulful improvisations, Williams has earned both critical acclaim and mainstream appreciation.
Skinnys latest album, Here2MakeUHappy, a collection of toe tappin grooves from the famed saxophonist and all star rhythm section is a praiseworthy successor to Williams last traditional jazz album and audience favorite, Skinny Swings Again.
Skinny Williamss earliest musical influence was his mother who played recordings by everyone from Burt Bacharach, George Benson, Barbra Striesand, and Parliament Funkadelic.
"My mother was not able to take piano lessons as a child but she insisted that we did" He admits. "I agreed to the lessons because I had a crush on the piano teacher. I would just stare at her as she played during the lesson without regard to what was being taught. Im surprised I remembered where middle C was. The teacher moved away and I started playing sax the next year and realized I had found my instrument."
A Chicago native, Williams embarked on his music career while still in his teens. Being 6 feet 4 and 180 pounds, he was often referred to as "that skinny sax player," thus earning him his nickname "Skinny". And putting his first name William as his last name, hence Skinny Williams.
He pursued his music studies at Berklee College of Music. After graduation he toured the world with blues great Junior Wells.
"I went to a jam session one night and these blues guys asked me to go on the road.... I didnt even know who Junior Wells was at the time. I was a jazzer coming out of college and playing the blues taught me to simplify my musical ideas."
Skinny Williams has performed with some of the biggest names in the business- from comedian Bernie Mac, The Ohio Players, Chaka Khan, Brian McKnight, George Duke and Sheila E, jammed on stage with Brian Culbertson, Nick Colionne. Sat in with blues legends Buddy Guy, BB King and Bo Diddley. Toured Australia, Japan, and Europe with blues greats Junior Wells and Lucky Peterson.
Williams is one of the industrys most respected and in-demand players, with critics comparing him to such greats as Stanley Turrentine, Junior Walker, Grover Washington Jr. and Boney James.
Skinny Williams endorses and plays SDT-1200 SILVER PLATE DAKOTA TENOR SAX & SDAS-1020 STRAIGHT ALTO SAXOPHONE exclusively at all performance venues and clinics.
Prodded by his mother to join the elementary school band, deciding on a single instrument grew difficult to choose when surrounded by so many for JWhite. But when asked which would he like to play, unknowingly His answer would unlock an incredible future. “I guess that one…I like the way it’s shaped”….voila a Saxophone!
Ground-breaking artists like John Coltrane and Kenny G. – daring, innovative, and fearless – they changed the jazz world forever and opened doors for a new generation of musicians. Enter Detroit, Michigan native JWhite, a young, vibrant, versatile performer who has not only taken the torch from the aforementioned superstars….. he is creating his own destiny with all-around talent rarely seen in the entertainment world. In fact, JWhite has already shared the stage alongside many industry greats like Smokie Norful, Dave Hollister, Warren Hill, Nick Colionne, Peter White, Euge Groove, Eric Darius, Eric Roberson, P.J. Morton and urban jazz saxophonist and flautist, Najee.
Most recently, Mr. White took runner up at the Warren Hill Sax Summit (2013), competing with Saxophonists from all of the world! As a result, He was added on the Arizona Jazz Festival (2013) and rocked the stage! He was such a hit, he was added on the San Diego Jazz Festival (2013, 2014), Las Vegas Jazz Festival (2013), Arizona Jazz Festival (2014) and “Jazz at the Creek” (San Diego, 2014). In 2014, the "JWhite Music" movement had reached Jazz venues in Detroit, Philly, and California.
Jon began to develop quickly in music, studying privately under the late Emil Acitelli. His efforts eventually lead to a music scholarship attending the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in music and performed with the Marching Band & Wind Symphony, and toured with the Jazz Ensemble under the direction of the late Odie Burrus. While in College, he began to tour all over the State of Arkansas and Memphis performing with a local show band. It was at the tender age of 20 when he learned about showmanship, connectivity, and musical excellence.
Musically, JWhite lists everyone from Gerald Albright, Cannonball Adderly, and Kirk Whalum to Charlie Parker, Dexter Gordon, and Grover Washington, Jr. as major influences. His own style and presentation borrows from the Pastelle and Rosewood movement, the contemporary urban scene, and youthful expressions from around the globe. His music is without a doubt soulfully-driven, and technically motivated, intertwining the sounds of Smooth Jazz with a hint of Straight Ahead Jazz to deliver a sensual, harmonic, and melodic sound.
“I want my music to have identity and purpose and to be felt by people from all walks of life. The freedom and life I feel when I’m on stage or in a night club playing with my eyes closed, is the same feeling I want listeners to experience when they turn my records on.” The newest Smooth Jazz sensations include “You Make Me Smile” which portrays beautiful vocals with a sweet sounding sax melody on top, as well as the new “wedding song” for years to come, “Today & Forever.” However, the single of the hit remake “Girls around the world” is the biggest radio and internet BUZZ! "I did a remake of “Girls around the world”, by Lloyd, because I’m a big fan of all kinds of music and when I first heard the bass line and groove to that song, I knew I wanted do my version.”"
JWhite is a songwriter, producer and musician who commands your attention with amazing, soulful sounds. Just listening to him for a first time, you sense his passion. He is a fearless, determined, talented young artist. With release of his latest album, "Grit & Glamour" (The Sountrack): it will only be a matter of time before this dynamic young man becomes a household name.
Jon is a Sax Dakota endorsing artist and plays exclusively on Alto Sax model SDA-XG 404.
Visit his web site: http://www.jwhitelive.com