Blessed with a stunningly soulful voice, an uncanny songwriting talent, a charismatic personality and a commanding stage presence, Javier Colon has already won the attention of an international fan base that's embraced his personally-charged, acoustic-textured blend of pop, rock and R&B, an effortlessly distinctive style that he's dubbed "acoustic soul." Having been introduced millions of TV viewers as the winner on the inaugural season of NBC's The Voice, singer-songwriter-guitarist Colon is set to take his recording career to the next level with Gravity, his fourth album and his first for Concord Records. "I'm grateful to The Voice for allowing me to be myself in front of tens of millions of people," Javier notes. "It was the greatest thing that could have happened to me, and the experience gave me the confidence to fight to be my real self musically. I was happy with the album that I made for Universal, for the most part, but it was kind of an arranged marriage and it didn't work out. But that's OK, I'm a firm believer in everything happening for a reason. Now I'm in situation with Concord where I can make the music that I've always wanted to make." The new label association yields substantial creative results throughout Gravity, which finds Javier Colon delivering some of his most accomplished songwriting and most inspired performances to date. "It's always been my goal as a songwriter," he says, "to write songs that people can relate to their own experiences, or to get people to step out of their own shoes for a few minutes and see what somebody else's life might be like." Colon set the stage for Gravity's release with some recent overseas successes, including a run of shows in Japan with renowned jazz saxophonist Dave Koz, and a series of concerts in Mexico and South America with Maroon 5 (whose frontman Adam Levine was Javier's coach on The Voice). Those experiences helped to ignite Colon's excitement about getting back on the road and bringing Gravity to his loyal and growing fan base. "Music is powerful," Colon continues. "It can make you cry, it can make you laugh, it can make you dance, and it can make you feel like you're not alone. It can allow you to confront your life, or it can make you forget about life for awhile. My songs have always come from the heart, and from a place of wanting to move people or make people feel something inside. "I'm glad to be in a position now where I can put music out there that reflects who I am as an artist and a person," he concludes. "As an artist, you live and die by the songs that you sing, and if you sing a song that you're not fully invested in, or a song that you don't really feel, then you're not doing your job as an artist. With Gravity, I got to make an album that I really love from start to finish, and I'm willing to fight for that and live with the consequences."
Chris Walker - March 18, 2023
It is most appropriate if there was anyone to continue the legacy of Al Jarreau, it’s Chris Walker who served as Al Jarreau’s Musical Director, co-vocalist and bassist for more than twenty years. In the summer of 2019, Walker released his homage to Jarreau: We’re In This Love Together – Celebrating Al Jarreau which continues to receive rave reviews from both critics and fans alike. Almost all the musicians on the record and performing in the live shows worked with Jarreau. Born and raised in Houston TX, Chris Walker began singing before he began speaking. He got his start in the church as a member of his family gospel group, The Walker Brothers, and started playing bass at 8 years old. He plays the bass upside down like one of his early heroes, Jimi Hendrix did on the guitar. The Walker’s raised their children with a strong hand, and once Chris graduated from the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston, he was ready to head to New York to pursue his musical dreams, but he only had forty dollars! In order to attend the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, he sold his bass amp; but was denied entry due to his inability to pay the tuition. However, fate would intervene. While walking the halls of the college, he heard a jam session going and decided to join in. When he took the stage the school dean happened to hear him and offered him a full scholarship on the spot. Thus, began a new chapter in his musical journey. While at the New School, Chris was afforded the opportunity to play with such Jazz greats as Ornette Coleman, Art Blakey, Bob James, Jimmy Heath, Cassandra Wilson and countless others. His musicianship garnered him a position as the Musical Director for R&B songstress Regina Belle as well as touring with Ornette Coleman. For the next two years, he juggled between the two artists. With his desire to sing more, he chose to stay with Ms. Belle, which ultimately led to a successful solo debut project on Pendulum Records. Chris Walker’s first release First Time produced two top five singles; “Giving You All My Love” and “Take Time,” which crossed over to become top 30 on the pop charts. His second release entitled Sincerely Yours, included the classic song, “How Do You Heal A Broken Heart,” written by Chris and Carole Bayer Sager. It has received over 60 million views on YouTube. His former teacher, Gil Goldstein brought to fruition a longtime dream of Walker’s to work with 7-time Grammy Award winner Al Jarreau and continued working with him as his Musical Director, bassist and co-vocalist until Jarreau’s passing in 2017. Among other highlights in Chris Walker’s varied and ever evolving musical career include: Co-Executive Producer for “Bossa Nova Noites,” which produced shows for the USOC, French, German and Japanese Houses during the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, featuring Daniel Jobim and Alexandra Jackson, being part of “Joined at the Hip;” a group with Bob James and Kirk Whalum, and performing regularly on Dave Koz’s cruises as well as being a special guest with Koz on his 2019 “Gifts of the Season” holiday tour and record.
Kirk Whalum - April 1, 2023
Soulful, passionate, stirring...these are the words most often used to describe Kirk Whalum's music. Forged from his Memphis, (TN) gospel roots and his 1980‘s initiation into the thriving Houston, TX nightclub scene, Kirk’s big, rich tenor sound is unmistakably his. The 80’s were highlighted by Kirk’s stepping out of his blossoming sideman role and forming his own band. It was there that Kirk ultimately developed both his “voice” and songwriting in the crucible of the local club scene––especially at a rooftop club called Cody’s. It was also in Houston where jazz pianist Bob James “discovered” him and brought him on tour, which led to five successful albums with Columbia Records, including Cache, Kirk’s first #1 album. As well, Kirk and Bob received a Grammy nomination for their collaboration album, Joined at the Hip. After moving to Los Angeles, Kirk became an in demand session player for top artists like Barbara Streisand, Al Jarreau, Luther Vandross, Larry Carlton, Quincy Jones and most notably, Whitney Houston, amongst many others. It’s his sax heard on the mega-hit, “I Will Always Love You.” Kirk soon followed that career high point with his phenomenal hit album released on Warner Bros. Records, For You, perhaps the most successful of over 25 solo recordings to date; others include his eclectic, and much lauded, Gospel According to Jazz series, (Chapters 1, 2, 3 and 4). In addition to his many solo projects, Kirk was also a member of the popular soul/jazz group, BWB, which features Kirk as the “W” of the group with Rick Braun (trumpet) and Norman Brown (guitar). An ordained minister, Kirk has earned a Masters of Art in Religion. It’s in this spirit that he serves his community in various ways when his touring schedule allows. There is also his daily fifteen minute podcast, Bible In Your Ear (BIYE), in which he invites you to listen along as he reads through the Bible in a year. In addition to music and ministry, Kirk has a passion to educate young, aspiring musicians and is currently engaged as a music professor at Visible Music College in his hometown of Memphis. Kirk is the recipient of numerous awards and acknowledgments for his musical excellence including three Dove Award nominations, an NAACP Image Award nomination and has won two Stellar Awards-Gospel music’s highest honor. A twelve time Grammy® Award nominee, Kirk won his first Grammy® Award (2011) for Best Gospel Song (“It’s What I Do”––featuring Lalah Hathaway) alongside life-long friend and gifted songwriter, Jerry Peters. Kirk has also been honored with a Brass Note on the Memphis Walk of Fame and a Star on the Nashville Walk of Fame. In a career spanning decades, Kirk has a sound that is uniquely his; it is a sound that leaves an indelible imprint on the listener.
Maysa - May 27, 2023
Maysa is the kind of singer who takes hold of a song and enraptures her audience in the palm of her hands, as she delivers lyrics, phrases, melodies and harmonies in a way that only she can. Blessed with an instantly identifiable honey-toned mezzo-soprano and an undeniably brilliant and magnetic stage presence, Maysa’s alluring vocals, candor,honesty, humor and purity as an artist make her a rarity in this business. Having collaborated with everyone from Stevie Wonder to Incognito, Angela Bofill, Will Downing and Jonathan Butler, Phil Perry and more...Maysa can hang with the best. It is no wonder she was the recipient of many awards for her work, including Soul Train’s first Centric Award in 2009, and her first Grammy nomination for Best Traditional R&B Performance for her remake of Nancy Wilson’s “QUIET FIRE” in 2014. The Baltimore native, who grew up in a loving household with amazing parents, is proudly the mom of one son, Jazz, who was born prematurely at 25 weeks while she was on tour with Incognito in 1999. Jazz is now in college studying Photography and Music Production. In 2018, Maysa became the owner/founder of her own record label, BLUE VELVET SOUL RECORDS. The company has released 4 singles, YOU ARE NOT ALONE, IT’S GONNA BE ALRIGHT, LOVIN’ YOU IS EASY, and SOFT WORDS. To celebrate her first record printing , MAYSA designed a commemorative blue velvet box set with those 4 singles as an EP called THE FAB FIRST FOUR, in January of 2021. Maysa will release her 14th solo studio album entitled, MUSIC FOR YOUR SOUL in the first quarter of 2022.
Peter White - June 3, 2023
Over the years, Peter White has maintained a reputation as one of the most versatile and prolific acoustic guitarists on the contemporary jazz landscape. Armed with an unparalleled combination of lyricism and energy, he combines elements of jazz, pop and classical guitar to create a sound that is singular and at the same time accessible to a broad audience.
Born in 1954 in Luton, a small town north of London, White and his family moved to nearby Letchworth shortly after he was born. As a child, he learned to play several musical instruments, including the clarinet, trombone, violin and piano. And of course, like so many youngsters growing up during the heyday of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, he gravitated to the guitar.
He learned his first chords on an acoustic guitar, then bought his first electric guitar in his early teens and studied the recordings of the reigning guitar gods of the day – Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page. But his musical aspirations ultimately veered back in an acoustic direction following an accident that doomed his beloved electric guitar. The axe was destroyed in a fire, one that White’s younger brother Danny – an aspiring pianist – accidentally started.
Plugged or unplugged, he had decided by his late teens that music was his calling, and his first professional gig was at a holiday resort in England when he was 19 years old. Barely a year later, he was invited to join Al Stewart’s band as a keyboardist for a tour of England, Scotland, and the U.S. in 1975. In addition to opening for artists like Linda Ronstadt, Billy Joel and Queen, White worked with Stewart in the studio in the making of Year of the Cat, which became a huge hit for Stewart in 1976. The tour and the album marked the beginning of a twenty-year association with Stewart. In that time, the two musicians co-wrote numerous songs, including Stewart’s 1978 hit, “Time Passages.” By the beginning of the ‘80s, White and Stewart had relocated to Los Angeles, formed a band called Shot in the Dark, and established a music publishing company called Lobster Music. Around the same time, Danny White – he of the burning guitar incident several years earlier – formed a group called Matt Bianco, which included a talented Polish singer named Basia Trzetrzelewska. Danny White and Basia splintered off to launch the singer’s solo career with the 1987 debut album, Time and Tide, which featured Peter White on guitar. After fifteen years as a backup musician and a session player, White launched his solo recording career with the 1990 release of Reveillez-Vous (French for “Wake up,” a title chosen by White in honor of his French mother). The album included several unused songs that White had written for Stewart, and it became a favorite among contemporary jazz radio stations. In a career that spans nearly four decades, over a dozen solo recordings and countless performances, White insists that it’s the faces in the crowd and the fans that keep the experience fresh. “I’ll play a live show, and someone will come to me afterward and say, ‘Oh, I loved this CD,’ or ‘This song helped me through a bad time,’” he explains. “Or I get emails from people saying, ‘Oh, I love the way you covered one of my favorite songs on your record back in 1994.’ The idea that someone can write me an email and tell me about something I did on a record that was released fifteen years ago – you can’t buy that. That’s priceless. That’s what keeps me going – the idea that people out there really care about what I do, the idea that I’ve made a difference for someone.”
Althea Rene - July 15, 2023
Born on December 25th in Detroit, Michigan Althea René began her musical journey at the tender age of four years old. She studied classical music while attending Howard University. For more than 10 years she worked as a Wayne County Deputy Sheriff (in Detroit, Michigan) during the day and performed in jazz clubs at night. Today, she endorses renowned hand-sculpted Altus Flutes as a full-time performing and recording artist. Althea René gained musical inspiration from her father Dezie McCullers (one of Motown's original Funk Brothers). She has since developed her creative style. Some regard her as a "master of her craft" and one of the world's most exciting solo improvisational flutists. The multiplatinum and Grammy-nominated saxophonist Najee playfully refers to her as the “Maceo of the flute”. In May 2013, she released her hit CD titled "In the Flow". Collaborating with Grammy award-winning producer Michael Broening, she co-wrote the title track that made history as the first flute featured single to be ranked “number one” on the Billboard and Smooth Jazz charts. This scorching hot single topped the charts for several weeks. With a passionate mission to mentor women in the entertainment industry, Althea René authored an autobiography titled "Becoming Chocolate Barbie - a guide for professional women in the music business" in June 2018. The book was written in an interview format so that readers may easily use it as a reference resource. Everyone who aspires for a life in business can appreciate the insights that she shares. Her plans for 2022 are substantial. Among her many performances scheduled throughout the year, Althea René is hosting her Second Annual South Central Jazz Fest on Saturday, October 15th. Althea René, saxophonist Marcus Anderson, and vocalist Tracey Hamlin will deliver an amazing evening of music from a historic military airplane hangar in beautiful San Antonio, Texas. She will release a few recordings this year. “The Best of Soul-Jazz Flutist Althea René” features 16 of her most popular songs recorded between the years 2000 and 2013. It reflects her evolution as a writer and performer over 13 years. Althea René is also releasing a new project titled “Pastel Leather” in the third quarter. The theme of the project is a particular duality of human personalities and behaviors. Sometimes we are forced to exhibit a soft, polite, and forgiving demeanor while maintaining our mental and physical toughness from within. It features a powerful lineup of guest artists like vibe master Warren Wolf, trumpeter Lin Rountree, producer/writer Demetrius “Krayon” Nabors, and jazz fusion icon Jeff Lorber. Althea René is the proud recipient of the 2021 Presidential Volunteer Service Award which honors individuals whose service positively impacts communities and encourages those around them to take action. She conducts flute masterclasses and workshops with various universities and music-based organizations. She is the co-founder of the non-profit arts organization Colors & Song. With a passion to educate, entertain, and inspire people with music and art, Colors & Song promotes academic excellence and social justice via a wide range of activities. The organization’s focus is to promote goodwill, civic, and social awareness in the community.
Najee - August 11, 2023
“My life has been a series of pivotal events and circumstances that have gotten me to where I am,” reflects the fearless chart-topping Contemporary Jazz pioneer Najee. In a business where trends and artists come and go, the genre-bending saxophonist’s staying power is a rare blessing. Najee’s gratitude permeates every note on Savoir Faire, his newest recording out in 2022. Recorded during the pandemic, Savoir Faire found Najee enlisting friends from New York, Los Angeles, St. Louis, Connecticut, Florida, Sao Paulo and Rio, to honor a melting pot of influences. “I gave up worrying about disputes between genres a long time ago,” states Najee. “Duke Ellington said there are only two kinds of music: good music and bad music. So based on that I do not worry. People seem to forget that in the early days of jazz, the music was designed to make people dance. All of your experiences live inside you and they come out in your music. I just want to make good music and make it accessible for people to enjoy.” Fait Accompli on Savoir Faire!
When Najee was just a kid, he had the great fortune of meeting two iconic jazzmen: Sonny Rollins and Charles Mingus. The introductions, which left lasting impressions further led him down his musical path. “When I was about 14, I was playing on a school instrument and everyone in the house was covering their ears and saying ‘stop, stop!’ My mom noticed that it was my thing and my release and so she bought me my first saxophone,” recalls Najee. As I began to develop on my instrument, John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, Yusef Lateef and Hubert Laws became influences.” As Najee honed his skills he had the blessing of being mentored by iconic saxmen Jimmy Heath and Frank Foster and flutist Harold Jones. As an industrious and hungry young musician, Najee had the good fortune of coming through Dr. Billy Taylor’s now legendary Jazzmobile program. While a student at the New England Conservatory he studied Jazz with luminaries George Russell and Jaki Byard. In the late 80s when Najee finished school and returned to New York, he landed a gig with Chaka Khan.
In 1987 Najee’s Theme was released and the saxophonist earned a slot on tour with singer Freddie Jackson. The following year, Day By Day was released, and in 1991, Tokyo Blue, which is one of Najee’s most successful and enduring recordings. Tokyo Blue and Day By Day both went Gold and led to two Soul Train Awards for Najee. A dozen successful albums followed as Najee’s career continued to create opportunities for him to work with icons in the industry. In 2017 Najee released Poetry In Motion, dedicated to the memory of Prince and Al Jarreau and featuring an all-star line up including Maysa, Will Downing, Eric Roberson and Incognito. Center Of the Heart followed in 2019 garnering an NAACP Image award. The album showcased the smash singles “Speak Love” and “Face To Face” featuring Kenny Lattimore.
A family man at heart, Najee shares that his greatest joy has been “being able to see my children grow up and live productive lives and go out into the world and make their claim. That for me is what makes life fulfilling and gratifying.” He continues, “I have always had family that has supported me and a brother (Fareed) who was there with me. We have always facilitated keeping one another held up, moving along and meeting challenges together.” As for what keeps Najee cranking out the hits. He concludes with a chuckle, “There is a saying that as musicians we never retire, we just stop hearing. I believe that physically, mentally and spiritually a musician has to love what he does and that inspires him to want to continue to grow and associate themselves with things that inspire them and keep them moving.”
Bob James Trio with special guest Andrey Chmut - September 1, 2023
“From his first days in Marshall, Missouri, the music of Bob James has captivated audiences throughout the world. Discovered by Quincy Jones at the Notre Dame Jazz Festival in 1963, James recorded his first solo album, Bold Conceptions, that same year for Mercury Records. More than 60 albums and innumerable awards would follow through the nearly six decades. Bob James honed his skills working with Creed Taylor, and on albums for artists like Hank Crawford and Grover Washington, Jr, among others. While with CTI, James found great popular success overseeing significant hits for Paul Simon, Neil Diamond, Maynard Ferguson, and Kenny Loggins. In 1974, James finally recorded his own album, One, which was followed up with three more albums before James began his own label, Tappan Zee Records. This allowed James to spend more time in the studio, focusing on his own creative development. In 1985 James moved to Warner Bros Records, and kicked things off with Double Vision, a collaboration with David Sanborn, and produced by Tommy LiPuma. Double Vision was another Grammy winner, selling over a million albums. In 1990, James reunited with longtime friend & drummer, Harvey Mason while recording Grand Piano Canyon. It would also be the first time James would work with guitarist Lee Ritenour, and bassist Nathan East. This would be the start of something beautiful, as these early sessions were the spark which led to what would come to be known to the world as fOURPLAY. As a group, the four released fOURPLAY’s first album in 1991. In February of 2003, James was playing at the famous Blue Note NYC, and decided to join Billy Kilson, James Genus, and engineer Ken Freeman at the Hit Factory. The result was Take It From the Top, a tribute to pianists who inspired James; Ahmad Jamal, Duke Ellington, Bill Evans, and Oscar Peterson, among others. The very next year James was at it again, with fOURPLAY releasing Journey in 2004. fOURPLAY toured most of the year, culminating with a trip to South Africa in November and a final tour stop in Bangkok, Thailand in December of 2005. This event featured the world premiere live performance of James’ The Angels of Shanghai. For this project James spent several months in the Far East collaborating with students from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, who performed with ancient Chinese instruments. He also brought in James Genus, Nathan East, and Harvey Mason. 2006 was busy with the release of Urban Flamingo and the honor of being awarded the George Benson Lifetime Achievement Award by the Canadian Smooth Jazz Awards. That summer saw the release of fOURPLAY’s tenth record, appropriately called X, resulting and another world tour.
Committed to sophisticated production and arrangements, James has always explored different and new directions musically. This brought the release of The Very Best of Bob James in 2009. 2010 saw the twelfth fOURPLAY album, Let’s Touch the Sky, which led to another world tour, culminating with an unforgettable collaboration with the New Japan Philharmonic in Tokyo in December. In 2013 Quartette Humaine was released. This was the first creative collaboration between keyboardist-composer Bob James and alto saxophonist David Sanborn since their million-selling, Grammy-winning album, Double Vision, twenty-five years ago. 2015 brought the release of James’ first live album, Live at the Milliken Auditorium, which was captured on a magical night in his home town of Traverse City, Michigan. This same year also brought the first release from James and long time collaborator Nathan East, The New Cool, a masterful work of art which truly redefines the essence of cool. Still not finished, fOURPLAY came together for the release of the group’s 25th anniversary, with Silver, which was recorded old school at Sunset Sound Studios, where the group recorded their first album 25 years earlier. While James is recognized as one of the progenitors of smooth jazz, his music has also had a profound effect on the history of hip hop. Two of James’ songs – “Nautilus” from 1974’s One and “Take Me to the Mardi Gras” from 1975’s Two – are among the most sampled in hip hop history. The career of Bob James is truly long, varied, and continues to evolve at every turn.
Norman Brown - October 13, 2023
Born in Shreveport, LA, and raised in Kansas City, KS Norman Brown has enjoyed a career longevity that is rare in this business. Never one to rest on his laurels, he states, “I always remind myself that success lies within my own brain. To expect difficulties and to force my way through them. To avoid procrastination in all its forms and to never, under any circumstances put off until tomorrow any duties that should be performed today.” It is these virtues that keep Brown on his astonishing evolution. A graduate of the Musician’s Institute in North Hollywood, Norman Brown would go on to teach at the school until he landed his first deal, as the flagship artist on Motown’s Mojazz label.
The Atlanta-based musician’s love affair with the guitar began at age eight. Watching his older brother play, Norman was drawn to the energy radiating from what he now calls his “Spirit Catcher,” the strings on the guitar. Waiting for his brother Roy Brown Jr., “Popsicle” to leave, Norman couldn’t wait to get his hands on his six string carefully stored in the closet. Luckily for us, Brown’s love affair with the guitar is still going strong. His technical wizardry, genre-bending facility, soulful finesse, and charisma, have made him one of the most sought-after internationally renowned musicians in Contemporary Jazz. A musician’s musician, Brown has collaborated with everyone from George Benson, Brian McKnight, Kirk Whalum, and Miki Howard, to Jeff Lorber, Gerald Albright, Rick Braun, Peabo Bryson, and Chanté Moore, to name a few. Shanachie Entertainment VP of Jazz A&R, Danny Weiss, states, “At the risk of being blasphemous, Norman is the true successor to Wes Montgomery and George Benson. Like them, he's a jazz musician of the highest order, but you hardly notice because you're having so much fun listening to him.” At the core of Brown’s life and work are the 11 laws of God, the principles of universal law and wisdom from the Ancient Egyptian Spiritual Studies, The Ausar Auset Initiation System, "The Paut Neteru Of Anu," The Tree of Life, which focuses on peace, harmonious unification, wisdom, spirit power, order and truth, balance, justice, free will, creativity, thoughts and morality, manifestation and devotion for divine earthly living.
In 2022 Norman Brown’s 13th recording as a leader and fourth for the label, Let’s Get Away was released. With the release of Let’s Get Away and in the wake of so much divisiveness, Norman Brown hopes that his music can be a reminder that, “We are one race of beings interconnected and interrelated, therefore, we are interdependent on one another to achieve Optimality! A life united in harmony in the state of a joyful peace. As the gears in a fine Swiss watch operates achieving the state of keeping perfect time.”
Steve Oliver - November 18, 2023
With a career spanning over 25 years in music, multi-instrumentalist, singer, songwriter and producer Steve Oliver is still being heard each day on contemporary and smooth jazz radio around the world. His career has produced eight studio albums, a live CD / DVD package and a “Best Of” collection including multiple #1 hits on the Billboard charts. For Oliver, music is therapy and a welcomed diversion from the current world climate. He has numerous radio legacy hits to his credit including “High Noon”, “Fun In The Sun”, “Global Kiss”, and “Chips & Salsa”.
Walter Beasley - December 9, 2023
Over the past three decades, saxophonist, Walter Beasley, has artfully and dynamically redefined the phrase “musical Renaissance Man” for the modern generation. Considered by fans and critics alike as the “heir to Grover Washington, Jr.’s Throne,” Beasley is the acclaimed saxophonist, vocalist, educator, and entrepreneur of the decade. As the highest selling full-time Professor / Recording Artist in history, the Boston-based musician has long mastered an exhilarating high wire act of balancing a successful career as a contemporary jazz recording artist and performer with an equally thriving presence in the field of music education.
A leading alto and soprano saxophonist and prominent vocalist all the same, Beasley is hailed by fans for his thrilling performances along the East Coast and throughout the U.S. and Caribbean. Notable performances include the all-star tour To Grover, With Love, performing alongside Chuck Loeb, Buddy Williams and Andy Snitzer and performing as the headlining act for the 2011 Playboy Jazz Festival.
As to the release of his latest CD/DVD project, “Live In The Club,” Beasley’s chart-topping single, “Groove In You,” debuted on the Groove Jazz Chart at #29, climbing to Top 20 on the Billboard/R&R Chart, Radiowave, SmoothJazz.com, & Mediabase, earning a spot in the Top 10 on the Indie Chart. Other notable works by Beasley include his self-titled albums, Sax Meditations and Live in the Groove, both released through his Affable Publishing, as well as Free Your Mind (Heads Up), whose presence earned Beasley the 2009 Jazz Awards, and Backatcha (Shanachie Entertainment / Affable), featuring his hot single, “Lovely Day.” During 2011, Backatcha rose to #10 on Billboard Top 50, with his single “The Call” debuting at 30 on Billboard Smooth Jazz chart and #3 Most Added in June 2011.
Since 2008, Beasley continues to thrive at the forefront of digital media and communication by offering consultation services to independent sax artists via Skype. Students are worldwide and of all ages and skill levels. He extends his influence to the younger generation by sharing his experiences and educational expertise through “Walter Beasley Sax Lessons” on YouTube and through his educational app offerings on iTunes and Google. Beasley also creates instructional DVDs for young players who are not able to afford a traditional music education. Projects include 14 Steps To Maximizing your Performance, which is currently available for download on his official website. His other best selling videos released through his Affable Publishing include Sound Production for the Saxophone, Hip Hop Improvisation, Circular Breathing and Performance Workshop.
A native of El Centro, CA, Beasley found his calling in the 1970’s after his Aunt gave him his first Grover Washington, Jr. record at the age of nine. During his early teens, Beasley played sax and sang in various bands throughout Southern California. In the following years, Beasley attended the prestigious Berklee College of Music and graduated alongside such prominent classmates as saxophonist, Branford Marsalis, and vocalist, Rachelle Ferrell. Upon graduation, Beasley accepted a teaching position at Berklee where he continues to share his musical genius with students, nearly 30 years later.