Top Names Assemble for Jazz for Japan Benefit Recording

Jazz for Japan benefit recordingJazz For Japan is a benefit album recorded in two days by 25 of the top jazz musicians in the world benefiting the earthquake and tsunami victims in Japan. The recordings took place last week in Los Angeles at Capitol Studios in Hollywood. Legendary and Grammy nominated performers include: Kenny G, Christian McBride, Marcus Miller, George Duke, Rickey Minor, Tom Scott, Billy Childs, Boney James, Lee Ritenour, Keiko Matsui, Bob James, and many others.

Larry Robinson, Jazz For Japan producer states; “This project came about after discussing the tragic aftermath of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan with my co-workers. I told them that many of the American jazz musicians tour Japan numerous times a year. It was at that moment the seeds of Jazz For Japan were born. Within five days we called all our jazz friends and put together this truly amazing line up of musicians to record at Hollywood’s famous Capitol Recording Studio who all donated their time.”

The album features jazz standards including “Maiden Voyage,” “Body & Soul,” “Watermelon Man,” “So What,” “Sophisticated Lady,” etc. along with a DVD release including interviews with the artists stating their support and sympathy for the Japanese people. “You, the Japanese people inspire us with your resilience. We are trying to send our strength with what we have – and that’s music,” states Steve Gadd (drummer, performing on “Maiden Voyage”, and “So What”).

Jazz For Japan is being produced by Avatar Records and is available now worldwide via iTunes with profits benefiting the International Red Cross in Japan.

Review: Tom Scott – Cannon Re-Loaded

Always a fan of Tom Scott’s, I’ve been waiting for this release for a while. Although when his name is mentioned, most contemporary jazz fans think of Tom Scott’s releases such as LA Express, New York Connection, Apple Juice, or any number of the outstanding recordings he did while on GRP. But there were two, now with this release, three recordings where that unmistakable saxophone voice can be heard in a more traditional (notice I didn’t say straight-ahead) setting; 1992’s Born Again, BeBop United from 1996 and now, Cannon Re-Loaded. Joining Scott on this collection of tunes associated with the late great Cannonball Adderley are Terence Blanchard, George Duke, Marcus Miller, Steve Gadd, and Nancy Wilson. This is a pretty straightforward tribute. The players all sound very relaxed and the arrangements are excellent. It’s encouraging to see Tom Scott on the new release list and I give kudos to Concord for ‘carrying the torch’ while the ‘majors’ have burned their houses down to the ground. One last note, it’s nice to hear Terence Blanchard in a more contemporary setting. Here’s hoping he steps into the genre a bit more.

Buy the CD from Amazon.com!
Buy the download from iTunes!