2009 Releases: Diana Krall, Boney James, Philippe Saisse

Diana Krall’s next recording, Quiet Nights, is a Brazilian jazz album coming out on March 31. After marrying Elvis Costello and giving birth, Diana says, “I feel more womanly, I guess, and I think this record is a love letter but very sensual, more on the erotic side. It’s definitely late night.”

Diana isn’t the one one feeling feeling amorous. Top-selling smooth jazz saxman Boney James has a collection of romantic covers and original compositions on the way. Send One Your Love will be out just before Valentine’s Day, on February 3.

Philippe Saisse’s debut on Koch Records. At World’s Edge. will be out on March 24. According to the press release, “At World’s Edge goes much deeper [than Saisse’s previous radio hits], weaving together a rich, melodic tapestry of progressive, impressionistic, and global threads.”

New on ContemporaryJazz.com Radio – Late November Adds

ContemporaryJazz.com Radio plays nu jazz, acid jazz, remixed jazz, jazzy house, dancefloor jazz, and other groove jazz styles. It’s online all the time and is free (with ads) or you can purchase a VIP package for commercial free listening and other benefits.

In the last three weeks, I added over two dozen new selections to the playlist. Among the tracks are cuts from the latest CDs by Maysa (with Global Noize), S.M.V. (Stanley Clarke, Marcus Miller, Victor Wooten), and John Beasley (from his Letter to Herbie). The weather dropped to below freezing last week so I uploaded Diana Krall’s rendition of Michael Franks’ “Popsicle Toes” as well as Jimmy Smith’s “Jingle Bells.” Of course, there’s more of the acid jazz and nu jazz I love the best, like St. Germain, Praful, and Groove Collective.

2009 Contemporary Jazz Preview

One constant in the contemporary jazz world is the planning and reliable execution of Heads Up recordings. I just got the list for 2009 and it’s another winner for contemporary jazz fans. I’ll elaborate more in later posts but here’s what’s on the schedule:

January
Incognito – More Tales Remixed – remixes of songs from the latest Incognito release;
Ladysmith Black Mambazo – Live;
Walter Beasley – Free Your Mind

February
Joe Zawinul – 75 – two-disc live set;
Pieces of a Dream – Soul Intent;
Mike Stern – New Morning The Paris Concert;
The Bad Plus Joined by Wendy Lewis – For All I Care

March
Marion Meadows – TBD;
Chuck Loeb – Between 2 Worlds;
Yellowjackets – New Morning The Paris Concert

April
Candy Dulfer; Hiroshima

May
Spyro Gyra; Zap Mama; Stanley Clarke/Hiromi/Lenny White

June
Alexander Zonjic, Andy Narell

August
Najee; Mike Stern; Joe Zawinul DVD

September
Take 6 – a new holiday recording

Holiday Music Roundup Part 1: Vocalists

I began looking up the various jazz seasonal recordings when I first learned about the new Christmas recording from Bela Fleck & the Flecktones. I’ve gotten a good number and am breaking them into separate posts. Here are some of the singers who have new holiday recordings out this year.

Al Jarreau – Christmas. An all-new recording on Rhino. From the Rhino site: “Album highlights include Jarreau’s instantly classic takes on beloved tunes including “The Christmas Song,” “Winter Wonderland,” “White Christmas” and “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.” Cherished Christmas traditions further come alive with his inspired versions of “Come All Ye Faithful,” “Carol Of The Bells,” “Hark The Herald Angels Sing” and “Gloria In Excelsis,” a sacred song used in the Roman Catholic Mass.”
Buy the CD / DRM-free MP3s at Amazon
Download it from iTunes

Singer Erin Bode has a new Christmas-themed release out titled It’s called A Cold December Night. The only information on it so far comes from the great St. Louis Jazz Notes, which says it’s due in November.

Bob James & Hilary James – Christmas Eyes. I don’t know anything about this other than it’s Bob and his daughter, singer Hilary James, in a Christmas recording produced by Kevin DiSimone (Hilary’s hubby). From the track list, it looks like a mix of familiar carols and original songs.
Buy the CD at Amazon

Harry Connick, Jr. has recorded a third holiday collection – What A Night! A Christmas Album
Buy the CD at Amazon

I only know of one Tony Bennett holiday recording where he’s the headliner and that’s amazing considering his long career. A Swingin’ Christmas is new from Tony with Count Basie Big Band.
Buy the CD / DRM-free MP3 at Amazon
Download it from iTunes

Marcus Johnson – FLO Series Includes Acid Jazzy Chill, Romance, and Standards

Marcus Johnson is presenting three new recordings under the brand FLO – For the Love Of.

FLO: Standards covers classics like “On Green Dolphin Street,” “Body and Soul,” “My Funny Valentine,” and “Goodbye Port Pie Hat” and features Johnson, Bobby Lyle, Michael Price, and drummer Lenny Robinson.

Like FLO: Standards, the title of FLO: Romance speaks for itself. It includes a number of Johnson compositions and performances by Johnson and vocal stylings of Frank McComb, Keith Ailer, Alyson Williams, Stoney Ellis, and YahZarah.

The subtitle for FLO: Chill is “lounge vibes and dance grooves with the right touch of jazz.” That got my attention. Johnson adds electronica elements to his music creating some interesting sounds. Some of it falls in the acid jazz category. I’ve already added “Another Planet” to the ContemporaryJazz.com Radio playlist and it won’t be the last cut I pull from this release.

Get more information on the FLO recordings on MySpace. Discs are available only at Circuit City but you can sample and buy digital versions at iTunes:

FLO: Chill | FLO: Romance | FLO: Standards