Chubby helped popularize the the 5-string C bass, was responsible for bringing be-bop jazz to schools all over the country, and also had the first American jazz band to tour Europe after WWII.
He appeared in numerous movies and TV shows featuring the grand masters of Jazz. Chubby performed and recorded with Woody Herman, Duke Ellington, Lionel Hampton, Charlie Barnet, Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis, Stan Getz, Coleman Hawkins, Dizzy Gilllespie, Ella Fitzgerald, Red Norvo, Buddy Rich, Charlie Parker,Terry Gibbs, Ben Webster, Raymond Scott, Bill Harris, JJ Johnson, Zoot Sims, Gerry Mulligan, just to name a few.
The Jazz Network Worldwide is dedicated with love to my father, jazz legend bassist "Chubby" Jackson for his contribution to jazz and entertainment...
~ Jaijai Jackson
CLICK LINK BELOW TO CONTACT JAIJAI JACKSON
Individually, they are three titans of contemporary music: Rick Braun, the gifted trumpeter/flugelhornist with the golden voice; GRAMMY® Award-winning tenor saxophonist Kirk Whalum, the Memphis-born wunderkind who mixes Beale Street, gospel, the blues and bop; and Norman Brown, the GRAMMY®-winning guitarist who brings a Louisiana lilt to his Wes Montgomery/George Benson influenced six-string soulful strut. They came together eleven years ago as the supergroup known as BWB and their historic album Groovin’, made them one of the most sought-after groups at that time.
This terrific triad reassembles with 'Human Nature' out today! This long-awaited sequel to their debut project spotlights BWB’s stupendous reimaging of eleven selections made famous by the King of Pop, Michael Jackson.
Though Braun, Whalum and Brown are often labeled in the limiting category of “smooth jazz,” the selections on this project prove beyond doubt that this recording was produced in the time-honored tradition of modern jazz musicians interpreting and elevating popular music, like Ahmad Jamal did with “Poinciana” and John Coltrane did with “My Favorite Things.”
The eleven tracks on Human Nature offer an exciting potpourri of Michael Jackson’s artistry – from his days with The Jackson Five to his historic albums as a solo artist, including Off The Wall, Thriller, and Bad. And BWB brilliantly recasts Jackson’s hits in new and imaginative ways. The CD’s title track – arguably Jackson’s most original and haunting song – was rendered with a spare arrangement at a slower tempo than the original, but with the same Quiet Storm, Debussyian melodic imagery of the original track, laced with vocalist Sheléa’s airy, angelic vocal. “We broke it down. We kept it at a quiet overtone,” Brown says. “The melody speaks for itself, with Sheléa delivering that beautiful melody. We played around that. I played a lot of arpeggiated chords. It turned out to be a beautiful piece.”
BWB’s jazz extensions of Jackson’s music are also evident of their energetic and evocative take on the megahit “Billie Jean,” played with a riff familiar to all post-bop aficionados. “Michael had an ear for that [harmony] and had a real jazz sensibility,” Braun says. “Let’s take ‘Billie Jean.’ When you look at the chord comping pattern, and the bassline, you can actually play Miles Davis’ ‘Milestones’ on it. The harmonies in the song ‘I Can’t Help it,’ which was written by Stevie Wonder, are so complex, that playing solos on top of that was challenging for all of us. So it’s not a fluke that Michael Jackson became the king of pop. The way he phrased melodies, it’s surprisingly complicated. It’s lyrical, but interesting and a lot deeper than would expect from a pop artist.”
It all comes together on Human Nature – three great musicians celebrating one immortal artist in a celebratory reunion that’s music to everyone’s ears. “We went our separate ways eleven years ago,” Norman Brown says. “But I find it really fascinating that after all of that time, we could come back together and gel right away, and keep that same old feeling. What ultimately comes out is a cohesive BWB sound.”
SAXOPHONIST DAVE KOZ TURNS UP THE HEAT WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM HIS FRIENDS: GERALD ALBRIGHT, RICHARD ELLIOT AND MINDI ABAIR
Dave Koz and Friends Summer Horns set for release June 11, 2013 (international release dates may vary)
Eight-time GRAMMY® nominee Dave Koz remembers a time when the summers lasted forever, and the most popular rock, R&B, soul and funk bands of the day were propelled by high-octane, richly arranged horn sections. Indeed, from the late 1960s through the ‘70s, bands like Sly & the Family Stone, Tower of Power, Earth Wind & Fire, Chicago, Blood Sweat & Tears and other brassy juggernauts of the era ruled the airwaves and opened his young ears to the saxophone’s limitless possibilities as a solo instrument as well as a collaborative voice with the trumpet and trombone.
Four decades later, Koz has assembled three of his most talented and trusted colleagues – Gerald Albright, Richard Elliot and Mindi Abair – to revisit this golden age with new arrangements of classic songs from this period in the history of popular music. Dave Koz and Friends Summer Horns, produced by Paul Brown (Al Jarreau, George Benson, June Tabor, Boney James), is a collaborative effort that throws the spotlight on four high-profile saxophonists, and augments the team with several other equally talented musicians and vocalists. Summer Horns, set for release on June 11, 2013, on Concord Records, turns up the heat just in time for the summer tour season.
In addition to the four-member front line of saxophones, Summer Horns also includes guest appearances by trumpeter/flugelhornist Rick Braun, trombonist Brian Culbertson, and three seasoned vocalists: Michael McDonald, Jeffrey Osborne and Jonathan Butler.
But Summer Horns is just as much about the arrangers as it is about the musicians, says Koz. “We were very lucky to have horn arrangers on this project who wrote charts for a lot of those landmark records that I remember,” he says. “That includes Greg Adams, who was the chief horn arranger for Tower of Power during its heyday, and Tom Scott, who is not only a fantastic saxophonist in his own right, but also wrote charts for Michael Jackson, Steely Dan, Joni Mitchell, Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, and so many others. We also had Gordon Goodwin, who is more of a modern-day horn arranger with his own Big Phat Band.”
In the end, blend and balance are what the project is all about. Whether you’re looking for sophisticated musical statements or just some fun grooves for those months when the mercury rises, you’ll find it all in the heat of Summer Horns. You’ll also find a new original composition – the bonus track “Summer Horns” closes out the collection.
“There are a lot of levels to this album,” says Koz. “There’s tremendous musicianship, and there’s a lot of thought that went into the arrangements. But by the same token, it’s primarily meant to make the listener feel good. These are songs of a certain era, and if you are of a certain age, you’re going to listen to them and immediately recognize them. It’s meant to remind you of a time when that sound was everywhere. This was our chance to honor that era of great horn sections with a big tip of our hat and say ‘thank you’ to those who were responsible for it. I hope people feel the reverence that we all have for this music and the great bands that made it.”
LEGENDARY GUITARIST GEORGE BENSON RELEASES HEARTFELT HOMAGE TO NAT KING COLE TITLED INSPIRATION: A TRIBUTE TO NAT KING COLE JUNE 4, 2013 (international release dates may vary)
Guest Artists on the Album Include Pulitzer Prize-Winning Trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, Tony Award Winner Idina Menzel and Singing Sensation Judith Hill
After four years of touring and developing “An Unforgettable Tribute to Nat King Cole,” the legendary George Benson makes his most inspired album: Inspiration: A Tribute to Nat King Cole. Set for release June 4, 2013, this recording is one of the most meaningful of Benson’s career and is a testament to the spirit of Cole’s timeless body of work. Benson’s heartfelt renditions of some of Cole’s greatest songs with Nelson Riddle arrangements and the 42-piece Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra are complemented by duets with Tony Award winner Idina Menzel and rising star Judith Hill, along with a special collaboration with multi-GRAMMY and Pulitzer Prize-winning trumpeter Wynton Marsalis.
Speaking on recording the album Benson says, “I felt every moment of it. You can’t put together a record like this without putting your heart into it. I got that from Nat King Cole. He put his heart into everything he did.”
PIANIST/VOCALIST ELIANE ELIAS CELEBRATES JAZZ ICON CHET BAKER
ON MAY 28 CONCORD
There’s no question about it: pianist/vocalist Eliane Elias is amazingly versatile. On May 28, 2013, Concord Jazz presents Elias’ I Thought About You (A Tribute To Chet Baker), an album that offers her personalized spin on the work of a key American jazz artist while spotlighting her connection to the singer-instrumentalist tradition (international release dates may vary). It fully demonstrates the range of interests that Elias’ art now boasts, and arrives with a statement of purpose: jazz repertoire can sound totally fresh when delivered with ingenuity and passion.
Long known for her native feel of Brazilian music, this new disc truly demonstrates Elias' expertise in yet another realm: an interpreter of American standards. An expressive, swinging singer and insightful instrumentalist and arranger, on I Thought About You she thoughtfully switches the size and approach of her impressive ensemble from track to track, yielding to each tune’s inner logic.
By and large, Elias has turned to pieces from the Great American Songbook that have been associated with Baker. Some are swaggering and bluesy, some are poignant and graceful, some are intimate and bittersweet – each is addressed like the jewel that it is.
“When selecting the repertoire, I chose songs that portrayed a wide spectrum of Chet’s work,” she says, “not only the ballads for which he was best known, but also the mid tempo and up tempo pieces he performed with such fluidity and inventiveness throughout his career.”