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Join us at Up Close & Personal as we help celebrate a milestone in the musical career of one of our fave guitarist Steve Oliver. With eight albums over the last 15 years, Steve's "Best Of so far" gathers multiple #1 Billboard hits and fan favorites including 2 brand new songs.
Jeff Antoniuk and The Jazz Update
Saxophonist Jeff Antoniuk is internationally respected as a jazz composer and musician. Now living in Annapolis, Maryland, the Canadian born artist appears on numerous recordings and has been consistently well received by critics.
With a master’s degree from the University of North Texas in jazz performance and West African ethnomusicology, Antoniuk spent a decade touring and recording with the Unified Jazz Ensemble. In 2004, he formed his own heavy hitting quartet, the Jazz Update.
The group celebrated the release of their first album together in 2007. Brimming with Antoniuk originals and luscious covers, the CD Here Today quickly climbed the jazz radio charts in the US and Canada and achieved stellar success in the world of high tech music sourced through high speed cable, Internet and broadband.
With the quartet’s 2010 album Brotherhood Antoniuk and company step out with fresh, memorable, and beautifully executed compositions. The progressive jazz disc delivers sophisticated and compelling rhythm, melody and harmony. Its global themes are brought home with depth and humor. Brotherhood began receiving significant airplay and advance sales even before the official release date.
Popular shows at Blues Alley, the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian and U Street clubs show the Jazz Update to be equally adept at live performance. The group surprises and satisfies wherever they perform.
On Tuesday May 13th at 3pm est,2pm cst and Noon pst, join Dean Swett, President of the Paramour Group, as he talks to the one and only Ken Pike, lead singer of Absolon. Joining Ken guitarist Tyler Colick will also be talking with Dean. Let's hear all the exciting news that Ken and Tyler will be sharing with our listeners. Check out Absolon's website :
And you can also join their new fan club page on Facebook:
And you can also like their band page :
Saxophonist Richard Elliot has arrived at a very special anniversary for blowing audiences away with his soulfully robust playing. 2014 marks 30 years since the release of his debut solo album, Initial Approach (ITI – 1984), on which he stepped out showcasing his tenor sax, soprano sax, Lyricon and writing skills. What does a red-blooded Scottish sax man raised in Los Angeles – now with a wife and five children – do for a 30-year encore? Well, this one-time member of the classic soul band Tower of Power proves he’s “not a young man” and drops the most overtly sensual, romantic and intimate album of his career in collaboration with contemporary jazz production/guitar giant Paul Brown. The title of this 17th solo project is Lip Service (the artist’s first for Heads Up/Concord Music Group).
Over time, he became a part of that country’s scene of young rising jazz artists and freelance musicians, featured as both a singer and saxophonist. Lie toured Norway, Sweden, and Finland with different groups and appeared on the jazz shows of NRK, the Norwegian equivalent of the BBC. Lie was also a recipient of a grant from the Norwegian State Fund for Performing Artists.
Lie later decided to move to the U.S. since his favorite styles of music “were being created in this country 24/7 everywhere.” Loving the Southern California climate and being “a certified beach bum,” he chose L.A. as his new base. Since then he has been a jazz artist and freelance musician, performing in clubs and at festivals and concerts throughout the West Coast.
Hailing from the "birth place of jazz",Vandell Andrew's destiny was not too hard to find. Vandell started studying music at the age of 13 at a local jazz summer camp in the treme area of New Orleans. It was then that he learned to play the trumpet. After a whole summer of playing the trumpet, Vandell was approached by one of his teachers that his embouchure would be better suited playing the saxophone.
Being that this teacher was the COOLEST sax player in the world, Vandell took this ultimatum as a compliment that his teacher would be even considering teaching him. Soon after learning to play the alto saxophone, Vandell joined the infamous St.Augustine "Marching 100" band. Playing in events and parades all over the world, convinced Vandell that this was what he wanted to do for a living after high school. Following high school, Vandell enrolled in music classes at Southern University at New Orleans, and studied with the legendary Edward "Kidd" Jordan. Shortly after about a month of studying with Kidd, the horrible hurricane Katrina took the city of New Orleans by storm. Vandell found himself relocating to Dallas,Tx. This experience was extremely hard to cope with at first , but Vandell began to like living in Dallas a little more, after checking out the music scene around town. Vandell began writing and working on his own solo compositions. This has led to him sharing stages with many local acts,at many different venues .As well as nationally known acts like Kirk Whalum, and Tom Braxton. This is only the beginning for this young entrepreneur, he is soon to record his debut album in the very near future.
Jean Maurie and Maggie Lukowski are excited to welcome Tarot Dactyl on Personal Empowerment for Your Soul.
Tarot Dactyl is the Host of the popular internet radio show "There's A Rock For That!"
Today she will share some of her poetry with us and talk about the multi-faceted world of performance poetry. She has been a poet most of her life, ever since she won a local poetry contest in the 6th grade. In 1996 she co-founded Calliope's Breath, a poetry troupe known for its crowd-pleasing performances in the Panhandle region of Texas.
In 1998 she created the group PHRANC (Poetic Harmonious Readings and Nifty Commentary) which was one of the first poetry troupes to broadcast live readings on the internet for a global audience. Some of the highlights of her poetry career include meeting and performing for John Cassady (son of Neal Cassady), receiving an honorarium from the Texas Commission of the Arts, being a featured poet at numerous readings and slams across the country, and having her work published in numerous poetry publications.
One of her poems, entitled “Special,” is in the National Gallery for Women in the Arts in Washington, D.C in the “Book As Art” Permanent Collection, as part of a collaboration entitled “Annie Mayhem PH=D .“ She also spent a year working with flamenco guitarist arranging and adapting Federico Garcia Lorca’s poetry to flamenco guitar. She describes poetry as the breath of life and the purest of channeled messages.
Cal Harris Jr.’s upbringing in Los Angeles was not a typical one. His earliest exposure to music took place literally in the company of legends. As the son of Grammy-nominated sound engineer Calvin Harris, Cal Harris Jr. grew up wandering the halls of the renowned Motown Studios in Los Angeles. In fact, one of his fondest childhood memories was a trip to the candy store with Melvin Franklin of the Temptations—a treat he would appreciate even more as an adult. It was within this environment that Harris would develop a love affair with music…and a well-groomed talent.
“I fell in love with arranging music after attending a Commodores session with my dad. It was a great track and I fell asleep as they began working on the orchestration. I woke up a few hours later in a wonder land of music. Soaring strings and horns, and sizzling cymbal swells. It was amazing to hear the transformation, an experience I'll never forget." It's no surprise that Cal Harris Jr. went on to a career as a very sought after sound engineer and producer. He has worked with such music monsters as Earth Wind and Fire, Lenny Kravitz, Prince, Whitney Houston, and Beyonce. Harris found a comfortable niche as a very sought after recording engineer, programmer, and keyboard player for music giants. Still, it wouldn’t be long before he could no longer control the desire to combine his talents and record his very own works. The time had come for Cal Harris Jr. push his abilities to the next level and reveal the gifted composer within him.
Cal has a passion and talent for composition as well as a lifetime of priceless experiences in the industry. He drives home the idea of creating solid, seductive, and infectious melodies through impeccable production. He is involved in nearly every part of his music's production, including writing, keyboards and mixing.
Jazz/Pop artist Pete Belasco began playing piano at a young age, later turning his concentration to saxophone. Both of his parents played piano as well. In high school, Belasco played in rock bands, but he soon became primarily interested in jazz and studied sax at Rutgers University and the Hartt Conservatory. He was also preparing a demo at the time, but was involved in a severe boating accident that broke both of his hands. For several months, he was unable to play, but in the interim he turned to composing and singing. In retrospect, Belasco has referred to the accident as a watershed experience because it forced him to develop his songwriting and singing skills. Belasco’s demo made its way to Verve Records, and A&R Executive, Guy Eckstine, who signed him. Upon healing, Belasco moved to New York to record his debut, Get It Together, which was released on Verve Forecast in the fall of 1997. The album was a concoction of influences such as, Marvin Gaye, the Beatles, and Curtis Mayfield, along with jazzy pop and lounge music cool. As Pete Belasco created the songs that would become his second album, Deeper, he kept returning to a common theme-intimacy. The grooves were sensual, relaxed, erotic. The lyrics were passionate, tender, generous. In a time of confusion and strife, Belasco wanted to sing about love, about faith, and about supporting one another. In a feature article in The Village Voice, music journalist James Hunter rhapsodizes about Belascos second effort
It’s one thing for a world class musician to write a book with a great title like “How To Make
Your Guitar Talk,” but Nils has gone further--living, embracing and even transcending those
words he once penned since becoming an instrumental sensation in 2005 with “Pacific Coast
The Munich born, Los Angeles
based guitarist’s breakthrough debut album on Baja/TSR Records was the most heavily played
track in the smooth jazz format over the past ten years with nearly 30,000 spins. The song was a
true phenomenon in its initial release, staying at #1 on the Radio & Records airplay chart for
more than 10 weeks on its way to being named the most played song in the U.S. and Canada for
the year since then the most played song of the decade .
Now Nils is back with a new release, Jazz Gems..Best of Nils, which will take us down memory lane and remind us as to why we love him and his extraordinary music.
He contributed as a musician and co-writer of “Keep Rollin’” on Benson’s 1998 album Standing
Together, and the guitar and vocal legend returned the favor by playing a duet with Nils on Nils’
1998 debut CD Blue Planet. He has also become a core part of many fans’ summer and fall
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