George Benson Autobiography

George Benson autobiography book cover

I’m looking forward to reading this. Labeling Benson as the “first true (and truly successful) jazz/soul crossover artist” does make you think. Usually, I’m skeptical of definitive statements like that but I can’t find a better example when you factor in the chart success he had. I wish some sort of box set or ultimate collection of his music would come out at the same time as the book.

Benson is available now.

Help Don Cheadle with Miles Ahead

Don Cheadle is ready to star and direct in Miles Ahead, the notumentary. That’s right – it’s not a documentary. It chronicles a segment during the musician’s “silent period.” Herbie Hancock and Robert Glasper are involved. Watch the video to learn more about the project and cool stuff you can earn if you contribute to the film’s coffers.

Top 10 – Years 1999 and 1994

In the earlier days of this site, I ran a top ten list of the most popular contemporary jazz recordings at the time. This chart was based on sales and radio play. Here were the top 10 from April 30, 1999:

  1. Boney James – Body Language
  2. Joe Sample featuring Lalah Hathaway – The Song Lives On
  3. Tom Scott & the L.A. Express – Smokin’ Section
  4. David Sanborn – Inside
  5. Inner Shade – 4 Corners
  6. Gota – Let’s Get Started
  7. Nite Flyte – Ascension
  8. Quincy Jones – From Q, With Love
  9. 3rd Force – Force Field
  10. Kenny G, Greatest Hits

And the top 10 from April 17, 1994:

  1. David Benoit/Russ Freeman – The Benoit/Freeman Project
  2. Paul Hardcastle – Hardcastle
  3. Dave Weckl – Hard-Wired
  4. The Solsonics – Jazz in the Present Tense
  5. Mark Johnson – Mark Johnson
  6. Incognito – Positivity
  7. Bob James – Restless
  8. Pat Metheny/John Scofield – I Can See Your House from Here
  9. United Future Organization – United Future Organization
  10. Mark Portmann – Driving Beverly Hills

Citrus Sun Returns

People of Tomorrow by Citrus Sun album cover Incognito founder Jean-Paul “Bluey” Maunick has joined forces with guitarist Jim Mullen to resurrect Citrus Sun. The new, mostly instrumental recording, People of Tomorrow, is available in the U.S. on March 17.

Bluey elaborates on the light and breezy feel of People of Tomorrow: “In terms of sound it is also more sparse as it features the sole trumpet reminiscent of the late Donald Byrd, and there is a cool Latin jazz flavor on some of the cuts. The distinctive sound of Jim Mullen’s thumbing guitar brings a tonal quality that is very different to Incognito, but at times it is obvious that this is the Incognito rhythm section and for that we make no excuses, instead celebrating the fact that this is a new project by the same band with me at the helm”.

Dianne Reeves – Beautiful Life

Dianne Reeves returns to music stores today with her new recording, Beautiful Life. As she mentions in her YouTube introduction, “It’s been about, what, five years since I’ve been in the studio. In that five years, I’ve lived a lot of life.” She’s got some all-stars joining her: Robert Glasper, Gregory Porter, Richard Bona, Terri Lyne Carrington, Lalah Hathaway, Esperanza Spalding and the late George Duke.