One of the areas biggest kept secrets is located in Beachwood.
On Monday night, Nov. 19th, the folks at Concord Music in Beachwood scored a slam dunk as they invited a small group out to listen to jazz saxophonist, Boney James’ latest project, entitled,” Don’t You Worry Bout a Thing” .
On this oh so special night, Boney allowed those in the house a rare and uninhibited glimpse behind the scene and into the musical mind of a melodic maestro. His creativity and his love of his own music was on display as Boney bounced and bopped to each and every track as though he was a kid at Disney Land. He showcased several volcanic songs that are sure to make a tremendous noise on all formats of radio.
“Sunset Blvd”, an ultra smooth ditty had you sailing down the highway at about 150 m.p.h. with the wind gently blowing across your face. Boney’s work is as solid as steel and the side screams for immediate airplay. Mastering engineer, Paul Blakemore, who just recently won a Grammy for his work with Arturo Sandoval, is in the driver’s seat and makes his presence known with his unique understanding of sound and the presentation of it.
James’ take on Stevie Wonder’s, “Don’t You Worry Bout A Thing” is second to none and is his third remake of a Wonder classic. “Stevie just knows how to write a song”, he chuckled. Simply add to this the fact that Boney can take anyone’s song, blow the hell out of his horn and voila…another hit is born. No difference here, the song is a smash just waiting to be completed.
His second remix on the CD is of a Sergio Mendes composition entitled, “Batucada“, translated in English it means, “The Beat”. Paired up with jazz impressario, Rick Braun, there is no room for improvement as the two rip though the recording and never come up for air. The call and response between the duo are seamless, yet both musicians stand out loud and clear and their red-hot signature sounds blend as smoothly as a cool mint julep on a hot summers day in the Bahamas.
Soulful R& B singer, Raheem DeVaughn shows up and takes Boney’s work directly to the smooth jazz format and beyond. The styling of DeVaughn and the soul of Boney meet right smack dab at the intersection of Soulsville and Jumpin Jazz Way on “Maker of Love”. All of the “For Lovers Only” and “Quiet Storm” formats around the world will undoubtedly get many requests for the song. DeVaughn’s silky smooth vocals lend even more credence to James’ sultry sax licks on this side. The accompanying musicians’ efforts and backing vocals takes the track from paper and turns it into a flowery blossom of love, life and the pursuit of happiness.
“Missing You”, another gem of a track garners even more attention and an attraction to Boney’s stellar work as a composer and musician. The colorful blend here once again highlights Blakemore’s expertise as a master engineer and lover of pure jazz.
The project is due to drop in April 2013 and will be met with open arms and a plethora of positive reviews worldwide.
Big ups to the gang at the WAVE 107.3 F.M. for inviting me out to this wonderful night of jazz. Tiffany Broz and Mark Ribbins, you guys are rock stars working at a jazz station. Keep up the fine work !!