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  • A Review of Jamison Ross’s Debut Album Jamison

    On June 23, 2015, drummer Jamison Ross celebrated the release of his debut album, Jamison. The album, released on Concord Jazz, not only features the young artists talents as a drummer and composer, but as a vocalist as well.

    The album is the perfect blend of jazz, blues, and soul and Jamison’s voice has a subtle power to it that captivates the listener, making this debut a very enjoyable listen.

    Jamison is a combination of original music with covers such as Muddy Waters’ “Deep Down in Florida”, refreshed as a new orleans-style tune driven by grungy guitar over a blues form. “Sack Full of Dreams” from Louis Savary and Eddie Harris’ and Les McCann’s “Set Us Free”, and Carmen Lundy’s “These Things You Are to Me” round up the covers on the project, making the album a pleasant blend of classics and new material.

    Jamison Ross is accompanied by his college mates on the project including guitarist Rick Lollar, bassist Corcoran Holt, saxophonist Dayve Stewart, pianist Chris Pattishall, organist Cory Irvin, and trumpet player Alphonso Horne III. Jonathan Batiste also performs piano on four of the tracks.

    Recommended.

    Jamison Ross was the winner the 2012 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Award for drums in 2012.

    Get Jamison on Amazon.

    Title: Jamison
    Artist: Jamison Ross
    Date: June 23, 2015
    Genre: Jazz,
    Label: Concord Jazz

    Tracks:

    01 Deep Down in Florida
    02 Martha’s Prize – Instrumental
    03 Emotions
    04 Sack Full of Dreams
    05 Set Us Free – Instrumental
    06 Sweet Surrender (The Hook) – Interlude
    07 My One and Only Love
    08 These Things You Are to Me
    09 Jazz (Aubrielle Ross) – Interlude
    10 Epiphany
    11 Bye Bye Blues – Part I
    12 Bye Bye Blues – Part II

    Get Jamison on Amazon.

    August 12, 2015 • Reviews • Views: 604

  • Steven Davis What Happened to Romance Review

    On June 23, 2015, vocalist Steven Davis will release his first big band album, “What Happened to Romance” on his label, First Second Records.

    The fourteen-track album includes a collection of original music and covers of Johnny Mercer’s “Day In, Day Out” and Irving Berlin’s “All By Myself.”

    Davis, a Nashville native, traveled to New York City to create “What Happened to Romance”, penning several of the tunes alongside The 88s’ Josh Charles and Alissa Moreno. The album was recorded with The After Midnight Orchestra which features members of the Count Basie and Duke Ellington bands. The arrangements, assembled and directed by Andy Farber, bring a classic elegance to the project.

    On “Young Love,” the closing track on the album, Steven Davis really shines as a vocalist, bringing an energy to the song that has you snapping along. “Love Comes Right on Time” is a great lead-in for the project and gets you in the mood for some great American Songbook-esque listening.

    The track “Perfectly Perfect” was featured in a commercial for the German mobile banking application, Centrally Numbers. Steven Davis’ recent performances include the I Create Music ASCAP Expo and the Durango Songwriters Film/TV Expo.

    Get What Happened to Romance on Amazon.

    Title: What Happened to Romance
    Artist: Steven Davis
    Date: June 23, 2015
    Genre: Jazz, American Songbook
    Label: First Second Records

    Tracks:

    01 Love Comes Right on Time
    02 You’re Gonna Fall in Love With Me
    03 What Happened to Romance
    04 This Time
    05 Perfectly Perfect
    06 I Found Love
    07 Let’s Keep It a Secret
    08 Day In, Day Out
    09 If You Were Mine
    10 Close Your Eyes
    11 If I Could Give You More
    12 All By Myself
    13 Sometime Soon
    14 Young Love

    Get What Happened to Romance on Amazon.

    July 15, 2015 • Reviews • Views: 751

  • DW3 Vintage Truth Review

    On March 17, 2015 DW3 celebrated the release of their sophomore album, Vintage Truth on the Woodward Avenue Records label. The project, with its twelve tracks, serves as a tribute to the late Ricky Lawson who produced and recorded on four of the tracks from the album.

    The DW3 frontmen, Billy Mondragon, Eric Mondragon and Damon Reel, are joined by Dave Koz, Brian Culbertson, Greg Adams, Paul Brown, Elan Trotman, and Ricky Lawson. Their rhythm section and horns include the talents of Charles Streeter, Steve Carias,  Rick Marcel, Carnell Harell, Tracy Carter, Darryl Williams and more.

    Vintage Soul is a collection of DW3’s most popular songs selected over their many years of performances. “I Can’t Tell You Why”, the popular song by The Eagles was produced by guitarist Paul Brown. Stevie Wonder’s “Overjoyed”, Luther Vandross’s “So Amazing” and The Mamas & The Papas “California Dreamin'” can also be heard on the project.

    The dynamic energy and signature harmonies listeners have come to expect of the trio certainly carries over into their most recent project. From the spirited “Let the Music” to the laid-back and soulful “I Can’t Tell You Why”, fans certainly get to take the essence of these popular SoCal based performers home with them.

    In 2011, DW3 made their debut at #16 on the US Billboard charts with “On the Floor”. In 2014 they were Grammy nominated for their background vocals on the Dave Koz Summer Horns album and they have been the resident party band for The Smooth Jazz Cruise since 2004.

    Our Favorite Track: She Keeps Runnin’

    Get Vintage Truth on Amazon

    Title: Vintage Truth
    Artist: DW3
    Date: March 17, 2015
    Genre: Smooth Jazz, R&B
    Label: Woodward Avenue Records

    Tracks

    01 Let the Music feat. Brian Culbertson
    02 Tribute (Right On)
    03 I Can’t Tell You Why
    04 Hold Me feat. Greg Adams
    05 Dance with Me
    06 Overjoyed
    07 California Dreamin’
    08 When You Cry feat. Dave Koz
    09 She Keeps Runnin’
    10 Square Onw
    11 So Amazing
    12 At the Club feat. Elan Trotman

    Get Vintage Truth on Amazon

    April 8, 2015 • Reviews • Views: 919

  • Vocalist Olivia Castle | Teen Jazz Artist

    Why did you begin studying music?

    I have always sung from a young age and first started attending singing lessons aged 13. I was a Choral singer for my teenage years, performing as finalist for the BBC Radio 2 Chorister of the Year competition held in St Paul’s Cathedral (London). I even intended to enter the Musical Theatre profession for a while. Therefore I only decided to pursue a career in Jazz when I was a little older, aged 18, and it is then that I started my training in the genre.

    Vocalist Olivia Castle

    Located in the UK

    • Jazz Vocalist
    • Years Playing: 9 years
    • School/Major/Degree: First Class Honours Degree in Theatre Studies from Royal Holloway, University of London

    Teen Jazz Artist Badge

    [What’s this?]

    Who are some of your influences? Who have you studied with?

    My greatest musical influences in the current music industry are Michael Buble, Jamie Cullum, Jane Monheit, John Mayer and many others. However I have a particular fondness for classic Jazz artists who are no longer with us; Ella Fitzgerald, Nat King Cole, Sarah Vaughan, Sammy Davis Jr and Frank Sinatra to name a few. I learnt the skills of the genre under the expertise of Jazz pianist Laurie Holloway (MBE) who accompanied me on my debut album, Siren Song.

    Who or what gave you the confidence to pursue music as a career?

    I attended a summer course led by the Montgomery Holloway Music Trust and worked with esteemed professionals in the world of Jazz recording and performance. It was these individuals, the overall experience and the continued support of Laurie Holloway that encouraged me to pursue a professional career within the genre.

    What are your thoughts on what it takes to be successful as a performer? Do you think any other skills are needed aside from the ability to play your instrument well?

    Of course musical ability is key to achieving success in the music industry however I definitely feel there are other qualities that are essential. Being humble and open to working with other people and valuing their ideas will always make you nicer to work with. Being gracious when receiving input from others can be incredibly valuable as you never know how they will be able to help you improve your performance- as artists we should always be learning. I also think stage presence and etiquette are very important and for a singer that means trying not to use music, engaging with your audience, microphone technique and thanking your band properly.

    What are some of the things you did before your career as a performer became as successful as it is today?

    During my years as a Choral singer I was a runner up in the BBC Radio 2 Chorister of the Year final, performing to a panel of judges which included Hayley Westenra, and an audience of 1500 in addition to radio listeners. I was also part of the National Youth Choir of Great Britain which meant I performed for the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall with greats like Daniel Barenboim and Gustavo Dudamel for two consecutive years. In 2011 I was also awarded the Diploma in Musical Theatre (dipGSA) from the Guildford School of Acting and completed my Grade 8 in Singing. Finally I was a Choral Scholar for a little while at Royal Holloway University.
    Aside from those great experiences I have been gigging and performing to get as much experience as I possibly can, which includes taking part in theatrical shows. When I was 17 I played Dorothy in a production of The Wizard of Oz, which is where I first met the celebrated composer Denis King. This experience remains special to me and is a significant reason why Over the Rainbow features on my first album, Siren Song.

    What are some of your goals musically for the future?

    My long-term aim is to become an established recording artist. I treasure the process of putting together an album; choosing tracks, making arrangements, the meticulous recording procedure and then being able to distribute your sound around the world. I think it is a great joy of the modern era that creativity can be so easily shared nowadays.
    Through doing this I would love to bring Jazz back to a contemporary mainstream audience. I believe the genre has so much to offer and definitely deserves a more prominent place in the current music industry. I am a big fan of crossover Jazz artists and I think this approach is a great way to make the genre accessible for a wider listening audience.

    What inspires you to continue to pursue music? Have you ever come close to giving up and if you did, how did you overcome it?

    The happiness I derive from music, singing in particular, is what keeps me going. However, although getting personal satisfaction is very important, it is also the enjoyment of an audience or a listener that is rewarding. Singing is something I absolutely love to do, more than anything in the world, and so in my opinion, you only live once and should use this precious life to do something you really enjoy.
    Since embarking on a career as a professional singer I have fortunately not been in a situation where I want to stop yet. However I was definitely dubious about starting such an unpredictable venture. It was the interest from a London music producer that gave me the confidence and the belief in myself that I could achieve my dream.

    What are some of the things you enjoy most about your career as a performer/recording artist?

    I love meeting and working with other talented musicians; it is amazing what you can create musically when you pool resources and individual ability. I also like the adrenaline rush of performing live and the accompanying delight in making an audience smile as a result of singing. It doesn’t get better than that.

    Do you write music? Where do you get your inspiration?

    I have not written any of my own repertoire yet but I have a great young Jazz pianist I am collaborating with soon and we intend to attempt writing some songs.

    What was your lamest gig and how did you learn from it? What was the best?

    I’m not sure I have ever had gigs that have completely flopped but I have no doubt that will come- it is a rite of passage for every performer. I have performed Jazz music in a couple of churches and as you can imagine, with large English stone churches, it didn’t sound right at all. My best gigs are always when I perform with Laurie Holloway and his trio. It is such a thrill to work with someone so breathtakingly talented.

    Hobbies other than Music:

    I have a qualification in Wedding Planning in addition to my degree, so I love everything to do with that industry. I also like reading, scrap-booking and I do charity work from time to time.

    What would your advice be for an up and coming, young musician?

    Give it your best shot while you can- don’t live with regrets. Also be gracious when people want to help you- some of my most valuable musical progressions have emerged from constructive criticism.

    Where can we find more information?

    You can find my website at www.oliviacastle.com which will link you to all my social media channels.  My username for twitter and Instagram is ocastle_music and my Facebook page address is: www.facebook.com/oliviacastlesinger

    New releases and projects coming up:

    I have just launched my debut album so no new recordings in the pipeline at this moment but give me a few more months and I’m sure I will be itching to get back in the studio. I am taking part in some music festivals in England this summer.

     

    Interested in having your profile featured on our site?

    Teen Jazz is also looking for young Jazz Artist features, so you could become a feature if you apply. You will be notified by email of the status of your application.

    Terms and Conditions:

    (A) You cannot submit one sentence answers to the Teen Jazz Artist Application form questions, they must be a short paragraph.

    (B) You must respond to the confirmation email that you receive from Shannon Kennedy after you submit your profile or your profile will not be published on Teen Jazz.

    (C) Pictures and Contact Information on your page are optional, but let us at Teen Jazz know if you would like to have both or either on your profile.

    Apply Here

    February 4, 2015 • Up and Coming Musicians • Views: 955

  • Vocalist Juwan Hall | Teen Jazz Artist

    Why did you begin studying music?

    I began studying music in the 6th grade.

    What are you doing with music now?

    Right now I’m still playing viola in my high school orchestra. I’m also trying to find my start as a musician by playing, writing, and singing my own songs.

    Vocalist Juwan Hall

    Located in Memphis, TN, USA

    • Vocalist
    • 7 years of playing
    • Doubles on Viola

    Teen Jazz Artist Badge

    [What’s this?]

    Who are some of your influences?

    My biggest influences don’t come from many people, instead they come from my life experiences. Some of my favorite artists that has some touch of influence in my life are Nina Simone, Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga, BB King, Bill Withers, and Sean Hayes.

    Who have you studied with?

    I learned how to play the viola with my teacher for the last seven years Mrs. Michelle Johnson.

    What would you like to do with music in the future?

    In the future I plan to have a career as a musician.


     

    Interested in having your profile featured on our site?

    Teen Jazz is also looking for young Jazz Artist features, so you could become a feature if you apply. You will be notified by email of the status of your application.

    Terms and Conditions:

    (A) You cannot submit one sentence answers to the Teen Jazz Artist Application form questions, they must be a short paragraph.

    (B) You must respond to the confirmation email that you receive from Shannon Kennedy after you submit your profile or your profile will not be published on Teen Jazz.

    (C) Pictures and Contact Information on your page are optional, but let us at Teen Jazz know if you would like to have both or either on your profile.

    Apply Here

    November 5, 2014 • Up and Coming Musicians • Views: 874

  • Kiki Ebsen’s Scarecrow Sessions Review

    Kiki Ebsen’s latest release, Scarecrow Sessions, is a tribute to her late father and her first endeavor covering the classics of The Great American Songbook that her father often encouraged her to take on as a vocalist. Produced by David Mann, the project launched following a successful Kickstarter campaign and has since gone on the see #2 on the most added radio single charts.

    Scarecrow Sessions opens with the hauntingly beautiful rendition of “You Don’t Know What Love Is” before transitioning into “If I Only Had a Brain.” The Latin-influenced arrangement of “Comes Love” is a fantastic take on the jazz classic and with “You Don’t Know What Love Is,” one of my favorite tracks on the project. “At the Codfish Ball” has a fun clarinet solo and was a song that Ebsen’s father, Buddy Ebsen, sang and danced to alongside Shirley Temple in Captain January.

    The album features the talents of John Patitucci, Henry Hey, Chuck Loeb, Clint de Ganon, and David Mann.

    Kiki Ebsen has toured and performed with artists such as Al Jarreau, Tracy Chapman, Boz Scaggs, Christopher Cross, and Chicago. Her original compositions have been recorded by artists such as Boney James, Eric Marienthal and Jessy J.

    Get Scarecrow Sessions on Amazon

    Title: Scarecrow Sessions
    Artist: Kiki Ebson
    Date: September 30, 2014
    Genre: Jazz
    Label: Painted Pony Media

    Tracks:

    01 You Don’t Know What Love Is
    02 If I Only Had a Brain
    03 Missing You
    04 Moon River
    05 Comes Love
    06 Tea for Two
    07 At the Codfish Ball
    08 Laura
    09 Easy to Love
    10 Prelude
    11 St. Louis Blues
    12 Over the Rainbow

    Get Scarecrow Sessions on Amazon

    October 8, 2014 • Reviews • Views: 848

  • Finding Your Mentor and Your Voice | Katie Bull

    We’d like to thank LessonFace for sponsoring this post. You can check out their upcoming masterclass with Katie Bull here. 

    “The voice is beautifully mysterious – sound vibration is an awesome, beautiful phenomenon – sometimes joyous, sometimes scary. So it’s good to have a playful heart when you’re in that landscape.” – Katie Bull

    Our voices are the one musical instrument we are born with, and while it can be argued that not everyone “should” sing, there’s no reason that we all can’t sing. It’s only a matter of tapping into what we’ve been given and making the most of that resource.

    “But I can’t sing!” you say. Did you know that this sense of inability, of creating this sort of exclusion, the idea that music performance is reserved for an “elite” collection of musicians who have spent the time honing their craft, is a very Western (and even relatively recent) idea. There are many cultures around the world and in history that see music as a community activity where everyone participates and enjoys performing in some way regardless of skill.

    And this idea, that we just need to own what we already have, closely aligns with vocal coach Katie Bull’s teaching methods, “Ultimately, you really are designed to sing and speak, which is about communication. It seems simple, but the natural voice is about authentic conversation, something we use every day; so, tap into that.”

    In preparation for her upcoming masterclass with Jay Clayton, LessonFace recently interviewed vocalist Katie Bull on her methods and thoughts surrounding singing, and more specifically, that of being a jazz singer. The upcoming seminar, Jazz voice, features Bull’s thoughts on the African proverb “If you can talk, you can sing” and how you can use this philosophy as a pathway to develop your own vocal abilities.

    We read the recent interview and think there are several interesting things to take away from it, so we wanted to share them with you.

    Sometimes the things holding us back aren’t pure inability, they’re just bad habits

    It’s often thought that we are born with our voices the way they are, they can’t be changed. While there is some truth to this, there are things about how we use our voices that can be changed. When we first start singing, there can be certain aspects of it that are more difficult than others (like bridges) and when we’re not sure how to work through them, it can seem impossible to improve in those areas. Thankfully these things are often developed through habits and the tendencies we may have when using our voices. This means that with direction and some work, singing through them and working them out is possible.

    A good singer doesn’t mean that someone just has a “good” voice

    Good singing is so much more than having a pleasant sounding voice. It’s about the way we use our voices. Maybe you don’t have the largest range, but it’s what you do with the range you have. It’s about how expressive, emotional, and authentic you are when you sing.

    All the technical training in the world is useless unless you can connect on an emotional level with your craft

    It may be impressive to have extensive technical abilities as either of vocalist or an instrumentalist, but in the long run, it’s the emotion and meaning behind your performances that will offer you the opportunity to succeed as a performer.

    Finding the right mentor is incredibly important

    A good mentor makes the learning experience all about you – they give you the tools you need to reflect and look inward to find what works for you and who you are as an artist. Finding someone who can give you the tools to succeed on your own is important and is so much more effective than working with someone who tells you to do things without ever giving you the opportunity to ever understand why.

    Maintain a good awareness of your health

    Pushing yourself too hard and the resulting illnesses can end your career if you aren’t careful. Maintain a good awareness of your health, your fatigue (both mentally and vocally), and understand your limits. Learn to take a break and step back when you need to; it will also help you avoid burnout.

    There you have it! If you’d like to read the interview, you can check it out here.

    Don’t forget to check out the upcoming masterclass with Katie Bull and Jay Clayton over at Lessonface on Wednesdays, July 23 to Aug 27, 2014 from 5-7pm EST. The classes are recorded, so if you can’t make the scheduled time, you can always watch them later. There’s still time to sign up, so don’t miss out!

    You can learn more here: https://www.lessonface.com/


    Katie Bull, critically acclaimed NYC-based jazz vocalist and vocal educator/mentor, took some time over the holiday weekend to answer some questions about her experience teaching vocal exploration and her approach to jazz mentorship, as a way of introducing and promoting her upcoming online jazz voice master class, that she’s teaching in conjunction with her own mentor, Jay Clayton.

    July 15, 2014 • Lessons • Views: 1133

  • Vocalist Ella Fitzgerald Biography | Jazz Legend

    Vocalist Ella Fitzgerald, dubbed “The First Lady of Song,” alongside Sarah Vaughan and Billie Holiday, is one of the most renowned jazz singers of all time. Not only was she excellent in execution, but her swing feel and scat singing were incomparable.

    Fitzgerald grew up in complete poverty. She was born in 1917 to parents who separated shortly after her birth and was orphaned in 1932 at the age of fifteen when her mother passed away due to a heart attack. She moved in with her aunt but was eventually sent to an orphanage. After running away, she was, in fact, homeless for almost an entire year. Luckily, however, she earned her big break at an amateur contest at the Apollo Theater in Harlem in 1934.

    She began to work with Tiny Bradshaw and then later Chick Webb who was initially reluctant to sign her. After a one night audition, she began to sing regularly with the group. In 1939, Webb passed away and in 1941, Fitzgerald went solo.

    During the 1940s, Ella partnered with Louis Jordan, the Delta Rhythm Boys and then Dizzy Gillespie. It was a part of this latter collaboration that she began to incorporate bop into her style which up until this point had primarily been pop and swing.

    In the 1950s she signed with Verve and began releasing her songbook series recordings beginning with the Cole Porter Songbook in 1965. The Gershwins, Rodgers & Hart, Ellington, Harold Arlen, Jerome Kern and Johnny Mercer songbooks followed.

    In the 1970s she had the opportunity to work with other notable performers such as Count Basie, Oscar Peterson, and Joe Pass, but in the 1980s, her career began to decline due to health issues. In 1994 she retired and in 1996 she passed away at the age of 79.

    Browse Ella Fitzgerald albums and biographies on Amazon.

    May 22, 2014 • Interviews • Views: 1539

  • Vocalist Andie Trépanier | Teen Jazz Artist

    Setup/Gear/Manufacturer of Instruments:

    My voice, mic, and amp. (soon a vocal compressor/looper? I hope so!) For backup musicians, I’ll play with anyone from a lone upright bass to an accordion player.

    Why did you begin studying music?

    I started cause my Mom forced me into vocal class, knowing I loved singing but was a little shy. At the time I didn’t join because I was afraid to sing, but I’ve surely gotten over any kind of stage fright, that’s for sure. I’m glad I was pushed out of my comfort zone, because singing is my passion and my work now!

    Vocalist Andie Trépanier

    Located in Caledon, Ontario, Canada

    • Vocals
    • 2 years of performing

    http://www.andiejazz.com


    Teen Jazz Artist Badge

    [What’s this?]

    What are you doing with music now?

    I’m working gigs at galas, weddings, and festivals until I attend Humber College on Lakeshore this upcoming September. I’ve been accepted for a Bachelor of Music (Vocal Major) with a scholarship, and I can’t wait to attend their fantastic jazz program.

    Who are some of your influences?

    My first influence in any jazz direction was a weird mix, actually. Probably Dean Martin got me into “crooner” jazz in the first place, and Regina Spektor’s first album, 11:11, showed me how much one could reveal themselves through improvisation and different stylings in jazz. That really inspired me. Since then, I’ve been attracted to the stylings of the classics, Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Chet Baker. More Contemporary Jazz singers have had key albums that have left an impression on me as well, such as Elizabeth Shepherd’s – Rewind.

    Who have you studied with?

    I never took a actual music lessons, but my music classes at school taught me all I needed to know. My Teachers were Ms. Collings, Mr. Chalmers, and Ms. Hynds. All fantastic tutors. They have prepared me well for my own performances and Humber college, as well.

    What would you like to do with music in the future?

    I plan on being the best possible musician I can be, and then sharing that with the rest of the world, making a living out of it. Music is my passion and I want to do it every day for the rest of my life.

    Andie Trépanier is a young jazz singer born and raised in the hills of Caledon, Ontario.

    At eighteen years, this burgeoning jazz singer/songwriter’s passion is singing famous jazz standards of the forties with a contemporary and blues influence that puts a new twist on crooning. In her senior year at Humberview Secondary School, Andie’s training to date has primary come from the school’s strong musical programs under such respected instructorsas John Chalmers.

    While she has been taking the stage locally for the most part, she has big plans and hopes to bring her voice anyplace where it can be heard.

    You can see Andie performing this June at the Orangeville Blues and Jazz Festival.

    If you would like to know anything else about me, feel free to take a look at my website andiejazz.com.


     

    Interested in having your profile featured on our site?

    Teen Jazz is also looking for young Jazz Artist features, so you could become a feature if you apply. You will be notified by email of the status of your application.

    Terms and Conditions:

    (A) You cannot submit one sentence answers to the Teen Jazz Artist Application form questions, they must be a short paragraph.

    (B) You must respond to the confirmation email that you receive from Shannon Kennedy after you submit your profile or your profile will not be published on Teen Jazz.

    (C) Pictures and Contact Information on your page are optional, but let us at Teen Jazz know if you would like to have both or either on your profile.

    Apply Here

    September 10, 2013 • Up and Coming Musicians • Views: 796

  • Review of Maysa’s Album Blue Velvet Soul

    Maysa’s latest release Blue Velvet Soul is a laid back, soulful tour de force and the singer’s tenth album as an artist. The album was released June 18, 2013 on Shanachie Entertainment.

    The singer co-wrote 8 of the 15 tracks on the album and covered Nancy Wilson’s “Quite Fire” as well as Mariah Carey’s “I Still Believe.” Mike City and Chris “Big Dog” Davis contributed several tracks to the album and Jean Paul “Bluey” Maunick of Incognito penned three originals.

    The album opens with “Beautiful Dreamer,” co-written by Maysa and Eugen Botos, a ballad urging listeners to view the world from “the eyes of a child.” “Sophisticated Lover,” one of six collaborations between Chris “Big Dog” Davis and Maysa, follows the opener. The two also join forces on “Be There,” “Pouring Rain,” “When Your Soul Answers,” “Inside my Dream,” and “When You Touch Me” (the first single from the album).

    “Put it On Me” is an energetic and disco-style track from Bluey Maunick and probably my favorite number on the album along with “What Can I Do” a funky, gospel influenced track.

    Maysa, who hails from Baltimore, MD, knew from the age of six that she wanted to be a performer. After attending Morgan State University, she joined Stevie Wonder’s “Wonderlove” where she had the opportunity to perform on Oprah and The Tonight Show as well as the Jungle Fever soundtrack. She got her start as a lead vocalist as part of the jazz/funk group Incognito lead by Bluey Maunick after auditioning for the group in the early 90s. In addition to her work with Incognito, she has also worked with artists such as Stevie Wonder, Chaka Kahn, Gerald Veasley, Rick Braun, Will Downing, Jonathan Butler and Pieces of a Dream.

    Her past releases include Maysa (1995), All My Life (2000), Out Of The Blue (2002), Smooth Sailing (2004), Sweet Classic Soul (2006), Feel The Fire (2007), Metamorphosis (2008), A Woman in Love (2010), and Motions Of Love (2011).

    Get Blue Velvet Soul on Amazon

    Title: Blue Velvet Soul
    Artist: Maysa
    Date: June 18, 2013
    Genre: R&B
    Label: Shanachie Entertainment

    Tracks:

    01 Beautiful Dreamer
    02 Sophisticated Lover
    03 Be There
    04 Good Morning Sunrise
    05 What Can I Do
    06 Pouring Rain
    07 When Your Soul Answers
    08 Put It On Me
    09 Inside My Dream
    10 When You Touch Me
    11 Quiet Fire
    12 I Care
    13 This Much
    14 Nothing But You
    15 Love Me Good

    Get Blue Velvet Soul on Amazon

    July 26, 2013 • Reviews • Views: 931