Hello Ronnie Laws - I had the extreme pleasure of meeting you when a group I was playing with at the time, performed at the 1988 Long Beach Jazz Festival. You were great, as always! BTW - I'm great friends with your buddy, Michael O'Neill - he and I went to high school together. Take care, Von Babasin
Ronnie...you have always been an inspiration in my music and creativity. You set the bar for many long ago! Keep the Jamz flowing and tell my very good friend Tc Campbell I said "What's Up"! Check me out when you have time!
Great to have you with us Ronnie, I've appreciated your music for years. Thanks for joining our family of jazz here. I look forward to promoting your work.
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Musical Artist, Producer, Arranger, Composer
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Google the name “Ronnie Laws” in any search engine, and you’ll find worldwide diehard admirers of his unique and compelling musical voice. They describe his work as outstanding, timeless, funky, bad-ass, high-quality, and real music to make you MOVE! People continue to sample his grooves, and admire his style. For more than 35 years, this musical legend has used his saxophone and his voice to satisfy his audience.
Ronnie’s most recent album, “Voices in the Water,” is his 26th solo release. It blends R&B with Jazz Fusion, and a surprising drop of rock and blues. This new album follows the success of his albums “Dream a Little” in 2000 (which yielded the Urban Adult and Smooth Jazz smash hit, “Old Days/Old Ways), an “Everlasting” in 2004.
“Voices in the Water” is co-produced by Laws and veteran producer John Barnes (producer for Michael Jackson, Herb Alpert, and Betty Wright). The project, which was finalized and fine-tuned at Long Beach’s Century 22 Productions, is full of texture and imagination. An impressive list of musicians and vocalists add their own flavors to the album: Vocalists Louis Price, Martinette Jenkins, Joey Diggs and Bridgette Bryant, guitarists Rob Bacon and Freddie Fox, organist Tim Carmon, bassists Sekou Bunche and Alex Al, and legendary drummer James Gadson.
For Ronnie the title track of “Voices in the Water,” with its haunting flutes and intoxicating chorus, holds a special meaning:
“During Hurricane Katrina, witnessing the news blasting on TV, I saw how, literally, a people were being overlooked once again. I just started reflecting historically, figuratively how voices were being washed asunder from the time slaves were brought to North America, and how there were some who literally jumped off ships because they didn’t want to live a life of slavery. Those are voices that will never be heard.”
In the history of music, few artists have been able to find their true voice and consistently use it to create beautiful, pleasurable grooves. Luckily for us Ronnie Laws, who taught himself to play alto saxophone at the age of eleven, found his voice early on, and continues to make the most of his musical creations, his sax sound, and his true voice.
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Jaijai, what a wonderful mission you've undertaken to create such a place for artistic minds to meet and share their hearts. A place to renew faded determinations, and revive lessened momentums. A place to display our wares and reconfirm to one another that we actually are on the right track.
I commend you, Jaijai, for caring so much that you created this castle of the heart for all of us. I want to share my praise for all of the new friends as well as old friends that I've met and will meet here in our castle. Here we can garnish the where-with-all, the strength, the conviction, and the selflessness through our symbiosis, to share our gift to the world with an unbiased agenda.
My mentor, Daisaku Ikeda says of art: "A beautiful flower delights and refreshes the hearts of all people equally, no matter what soil it grows in. That is the power of beauty. The same is true of great art. It is this spirit that the German poet Heinrich Heine sang of when he wrote that once the peapod bursts open, the sugar peas inside are for everyone to enjoy."