Archive for August 8, 2010

An all-star line-up of contemporary jazz artists will take San Diego’s Balboa Theater stage to launch the 2011 Oasis Contemporary Jazz Awards Weekend on Thursday, March 10, 2011.

The theme of the Opening Night concert will be “Night of Tribute” with musical respect paid to saxophonist Grover Washington, Jr. and bassist Wayman Tisdale. Event co-producer Chris White has announced Gerald Albright, Jonathan Butler, Jeff Golub, Tom Scott, Gerald Veasley, and others will perform. Jason Miles will produce and lead the Washington tribute set and Tom Braxton will lead and arrange the tribute to Tisdale.

Jason Miles has received world wide recognition for his innovative projects which have included two tributes to Grover Washington Jr. He recently played a fourteen show stand at The Tokyo and Nagoya Blue Notes featuring the music of the late saxophonist. Miles is also the producer and executive producer of “Grover LIVE”, a just released CD recorded by Washington at an upstate New York performance in 1997. Washington died December 17, 1999, after suffering a heart attack in the Green Room of CBS Studios in New York City. He had just taped four songs for The Saturday Early Show.

Washington is considered one of the founders of the Urban/Contemporary jazz genre, having made some of the genre’s most memorable hits, including “Mr. Magic”, “Black Frost”, and the Grammy winning “Just the Two of Us”. He is also remembered for his take on the Dave Brubeck classic “Take Five”, and for his version of Young-Holt Unlimited’s “Soulful Strut”.

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Contemporary Guitarist/Vocalist Steve Oliver holds the No.1 slot on Billboard’s Smooth Jazz Chart with “Fun in The Sun” from his Global Kiss CD and additional songs have been in rotation on The Weather Channel since July.

Oliver has one of the most compelling, soothing and distinctive voices in contemporary jazz, which he shows on Global Kiss’ three vocal tracks: “Life Goes On,” “Fearless” and “Take Me Away (Distant Shore).” Influenced by the world-music sounds of timeless artists such as Peter Gabriel, as well as the wordplay of more contemporary artists like John Mayer and Jason Mraz, Oliver’s lyrics always invite close listening. “Lyrically, I write songs about life,” he says. “I think outside of myself; I don’t write a lot of love songs.”

“I’m an advocate of music healing and bringing people together in the global community,” Oliver says. “It’s healthy. When you’re hearing a song and you get goosebumps as its moving through you, there’s power there. I write most of my songs thinking of a live performance; I want to get that live essence across when I step into the studio and start recording.”

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