2008 Artiste Biographies|
In 1975, Graham Russell & Russell Hitchcock met on May 12th the first day of rehearsals for ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ in Sydney, Australia. They became instant friends with their common love for the Beatles and of course singing.
They quickly gained a reputation for great harmonies and for original songs that Graham was writing constantly. They made a demo on a cassette, of two songs, ‘Love and Other Bruises’ and ‘If You Knew Me’ and took it to every record company in Sydney. Everyone turned it down, but one - CBS Records who admired their unique style. They made a single in one afternoon and it shot to number one on the National charts. Air Supply was born!
Clive Davis signed Air Supply to Arista Records and in 1980, ‘Lost in Love’ became the fastest selling single in the world and leaped to the top of the all the charts. The second single was ‘All Out of Love’ and that went up the charts even quicker.
The trademark sound of Russell Hitchcock’s soaring tenor voice and Graham Russell’s simple yet majestic songs created a unique sound that would forever be known as Air Supply.
‘Lost in Love’, ‘All Out of Love’, ‘The One That You Love’, ‘Sweet Dreams’ and ‘Making Love Out of Nothing at All’ have each achieved multi-million plays on the radio.
Air Supply performs on Friday May 9th at Pigeon Island
Sunday May 11th, 2008
A singer, self-taught keyboardist, and a prolific songwriter, Angie Stone first claim to fame was being the lead vocalist on Vertical Hold's smooth urban dance track "Seems You’re Much Too Busy."
Her debut album Black Diamond was issued in 1999 by Arista Records. In six years, she had definitely gained an old-school, autobiographical vibe, exemplified by her hit ballad "No More Rain (In This Cloud)," Contributors included Lenny Kravitz and former Tribe Called Quest member Ali Shaheed Muhammad as producers, and her ex-boyfriend D'Angelo as a vocal guest on "Everyday."
The St. Lucia Tourist Board is proud to welcome this Columbia, South Carolina native to our warm, sunny shores – Ms. Angie Stone!
Saturday May 10th - With her classy, refined brand of romantic soul, Anita Baker is considered one of the definitive quiet storm singers of the '80s. Gifted with a strong, supple alto, she was influenced not only by R&B;, but jazz, gospel, and traditional pop, which gave her music a distinctly adult sophistication. Smooth and mellow, but hardly lifeless, it made her one of the most popular romantic singers of her time.
Born January 26, 1958, in Toledo, Ohio, and raised in nearby Detroit, where she grew up listening to female jazz singers like Sarah Vaughan, Nancy Wilson, and Ella Fitzgerald, Baker has had a list of hits like – Giving You The Best That I’ve Got, Caught Up in the Rapture, and Sweet Love the St. Lucia Tourist Board presents Anita Baker.
She will perform at Pigeon Island on May Saturday May 10th, 2008.
David Sanchez took up the conga when he was eight and started playing tenor at age 12. He graduated from a performing arts high school in 1986, spent a year studying psychology, and then moved to New York City in 1988, having decided to become a musician.
His early interest in jazz was fueled by recordings of such saxophone giants as Sonny Rollins, Dexter Gordon, John Coltrane and Charlie Parker.
He's also invested his talents in a wide range of Latin and jazz settings, including performing with the late Tito Puente's all-star group.
Today, his sextet is one of the most innovative working groups in jazz.
We present David Sanchez coming to Pigeon Island for St. Lucia Jazz 2008 on Saturday May 10th!
Thursday May 8th – Ms. Diane Reeves is the pre-eminent jazz vocalist in the world today on the Blue Note recording label. As a result of her virtuosity, improvisational prowess and unique jazz and R&B; styling, she was awarded the Grammy for Best Jazz Vocal Performance for three consecutive recordings—a Grammy first in any vocal category.
She has recorded and performed extensively with Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. She has also recorded with Chicago Symphony Orchestra. She is the first singer to ever perform at the famed Walt Disney Concert Hall.
In 2007 this jazz vocalist was featured in a documentary on the remarkable and all-too-brief life of Billy Strayhorn and her next recording is expected in 2008.
Dionne Warwick has, over an illustrious four-decade career, established herself as an international musical legend. Her reputation as a hit maker has been firmly etched into public consciousness, thanks to nearly sixty charted hits since "Don't Make Me Over" began its climb up the charts in December 1962.
Warwick received her first Grammy Award in 1968, for the classic "Do You Know The Way to San Jose?", and in so doing became the first African-American solo female artist of her generation to win the prestigious award for Best Contemporary Female Vocal Performance. This award has only been given to one other female African-American legend, Ella Fitzgerald.
In 1974 she hit the top of the charts for the first time with "Then Came You," a million-selling duet with The Spinners. Three years later, she teamed up with Isaac Hayes for a highly successful World Tour, "A Man And A Woman."
Eric Ildefonse has had the great pleasure of performing side by side with St. Lucia’s Luther Francois in the Martinique Jazz Festival in November last year at the Atrium in Fort de France - a combination which proved enchanting to the audience.
He is set to perform a program consisting his original compositions – which includes the broadest spectrum of haunting Caribbean rhythms, blending the French Caribbean sound of the classically Martiniquan and the Guadeloupean Gwoka, with the Calypso and Reggae sounds of the English-speaking Caribbean.
Performing on Sunday May 11th at Pigeon Island – Eric Ildefonse and his Quintet
Jacques Schwartz-Bart is a New York based jazz saxophonist. He has been praised by major American soul artists, raised by a Black Guadeloupean mother and a French Jewish father, grew up between Switzerland and Guadeloupe… The son of two award wining novelists, he followed an original and sinuous path that speaks volumes about his identity.
He was born in the suburbs of Pointe a Pitre on December 22nd 1962.
With the album “Soné Ka la”, Jacques Schwarz-Bart is the first musician to fully consume the marriage between Gwoka and Jazz: 2 musical styles coming from the African Diaspora.
Performing at Pigeon Island on Thursday May 8th - Jacques Schwartz-Bart!
Featuring Najee, Alex Bugnon, Nick Colionne & Ledisi
And now we come to a jazz artiste combination packaged especially for St. Lucia Jazz 2008.
First, Najee - a man who is superb on the saxophone. In addition, he can also play flute, keyboards and bass synthesizer. He was one of the first innovators of urban jazz, which grew in popularity throughout the 1990s.
He has been called one of the finest instrumentalists on the contemporary jazz scene. His smooth pop-jazz style, heavy on rhythm and blues, has gained him a tremendous audience of fans and a series of gold albums. He gives the people what they want to hear, and this has been his road to success. He continues on that road to success with an appearance here at St. Lucia Jazz 2008 – Jerome Najee Rasheed – known as simply - Najee.
Next on the star-studded list making up our specially formulated jazz package is an instrumentalist who has created one of the most recognized styles in today's contemporary jazz piano. It is a sultry mixture of contemporary jazz, funk, and R&B; with hints of gospel.
Even the titles of his CDs create anticipation for a musical experience that is delivered with passion. His latest album, FREE, reunites him with Atlanta based keyboardist and producer Phil Davis. FREE is a refreshing blend of exotic rhythms with haunting, soulful melodies.
Alex Bugnon is part of our Saturday May 10th Jazz package.
This third member of the featured jazz package grew up in a house-hold full of music - and at age 9 he began to learn guitar from his stepfather, Edward. The Chicago born, bred and still residing guitarist turned pro at 15, touring all over the world with rock bands and some of the greatest legends of R&B;, from The Staples Singers to Curtis Mayfield.
Nick Colionne launched his solo career in 1994 with "It's My Turn” which reached #13 on the national charts, and he hasn't looked back since.
Most recently, he won the International Instrumental Artist of the Year Award by the Canadian Smooth Jazz Awards; the 2006 winner was Trumpeter Chris Botti.
And finally the jewel in the crown of the 2008 jazz package – Her name means to bring forth in Nigerian. She was born in the New Orleans where she sang with the New Orleans Symphony Orchestra when she was eight years old.
Ledisi did a jazz album with bassist Marcus Shelby for Noir Records that further illustrates her amazing skills. Her resume includes singing in choirs, performing jazz and studying opera and piano at the University of California Berkley's Young Musicians Program for five years.
She's also done commercials and soundtracks for the Sci-Fi Channel along with appearing on the same stages with some of the world's most beloved entertainers. Her third studio album, Lost & Found, was released in 2007.
Feat. Ron Blake, Eddie Henderson, Carl Allen and Ben Wolfe
Juilliard Quartet - Saxophonist Ron Blake can be lyrical or romantic but always brings a lot of grit to his solos; he is obviously well aware of the funkier, bluesier side of jazz and usually doesn't go out of his way to be abstract. Blake brings a long list of influences to his work, and they range from Dexter Gordon, Johnny Griffin, Sonny Rollins and John Coltrane, to Grover Washington, Jr., Gene Ammons, and Stanley Turrentine.
Ron Blake - part of the Juilliard Quartet.
With over 150 recordings to his credit, this gifted Milwaukee-born, New York-based drummer, sideman, bandleader, entrepreneur, and educator, Carl Allen’s profound and propulsive percolations provided soulful and syncopated support for nearly three decades.
Allen is also an accomplished businessman. He co-founded Big Apple Productions in 1988 with saxophonist Vincent Herring, produced several recordings for several Japanese labels with future stars Roy Hargrove and Nicholas Payton, and created The Art of Elvin, a tribute band dedicated to his two drum influences.
Carl Allen - part of the Juilliard Quartet.
Bassist-composer Ben Wolfe started his career in his 20s, freelancing in the Portland area and backing Woody Shaw and other national touring acts. He then moved to New York, where he worked with musical luminaries such as Junior Cook, Jimmy Cobb, Dakota Staton, and the Mel Lewis Orchestra.
His collaborations with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra have included performances with Joe Henderson, Doc Cheatham and he has recorded with Wynton Marsalis, James Moody, Branford Marsalis and Diana Krall. He has also recorded three CDs of his own compositions and arrangements.
Ben Wolf of the Juilliard Quartet is coming to St. Lucia!
Eddie Henderson is another member of the Quartet and he was one of the few trumpeters, strongly influenced by Miles Davis' early fusion period. He grew up in San Francisco, studied trumpet at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, but was trained to be a doctor when he permanently chose music. Henderson has worked with John Handy, Tyrone Washington, and Joe Henderson.
Eddie Henderson – another member of the Juilliard Quartet.
Jonathan Butler was signed as a teenager to Jive Records. His first single was the first by a black artist played by white radio stations in South Africa and earned a Sarie Award, South Africa's equivalent to the Grammys.
Born and raised in Cape Town, Butler spent his youth under the shroud of apartheid. His escape was music. His self-titled debut album introduced him internationally and scored a Grammy nomination for the pop hit "Lies." An instrumental, "Going Home," earned a Grammy nomination and the mid-tempo ballad, "Sarah, Sarah," confirmed his place in popular music.
Jonathan Butler performs on Friday May 9th, 2008 at St. Lucia Jazz.
Kenny Barron has been recognized as one of the giants of modern mainstream piano. The younger brother of the late saxophonist Bill Barron (who was 16 years older), he started on piano when he was 12 and played with Mel Melvin's R&B; band in 1957. Barron moved to New York in 1961 where he worked briefly with James Moody, Lee Morgan, Roy Haynes, and Lou Donaldson. Most significant were his four years (1962-1966) playing and recording with Dizzy Gillespie.
Barron followed that important association with periods in the groups of Freddie Hubbard (1966-1970), Yusef Lateef (1970-1975), and Ron Carter's two-bass quartet (1976-1980). Barron was a co-leader of the group Sphere in the 1980s, and went on to generally be the leader of his own trios. The pianist was on Stan Getz's final session (a series of brilliant duets) and has recorded many dates as a leader. In the 1990s, Barron received long overdue recognition for his talents.
Barron will perform as part of the Juilliard Quintet
If you made a list of performers who have sold more than 53 million records, won multiple Grammy trophies for Best Male Vocalist and countless other honors, earned a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame and sold out arenas worldwide, Michael Bolton would be on that list. But if you tallied all the artists who’ve sung with Luciano Pavarotti and Ray Charles, written songs with Bob Dylan, penned hits for Barbra Streisand and KISS, played guitar with B.B. King and been sampled on a track by hip-hop superstar Kanye West (featuring megastar Jay-Z), Michael Bolton would be the only name on that list..”
Now, with Bolton Swings Sinatra, the singer can check off another item on his list. The collection finds him taking on classics like “New York, New York,” “Night and Day,” “My Funny Valentine,” “Fly Me to the Moon,” “Girl From Ipanema” and “That’s Life.”
'Bolton’s achievements as a songwriter may surprise those who are only acquainted with his singing career. In addition to hits for Streisand, KISS and Cher, he’s written songs for Joe Cocker, Marc Anthony, Kenny G., Peabo Bryson, Greg Allman, Wynonna Judd and many others; over the years, he has earned multiple honors in this field, including BMI’s Songwriter of the Year, Song of the Year and Million-Air awards, ASCAP’s Writer and Publisher Awards and a Hitmaker Award from the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
As in all of his endeavors, Michael Bolton combines heart, soul and hard work to make a difference in people’s lives.
Michael Bolton is set to perform at Pigeon Island on Friday May 9th, 2008.
Wyclef Jean is a rapper and sometime guitarist, who was the first member of his group to embark on a solo career, and he proved even more ambitious and eclectic on his own. He also became hip-hop's unofficial multicultural conscience; a seemingly omnipresent activist, who assembled or participated in numerous high-profile charity benefit shows for a variety of causes, including aid for his native Haiti.
He is a noted producer and re-mixer who worked with an impressive array of pop, R&B;, and hip-hop talent, including Whitney Houston, Santana, and Destiny's Child, among many others.
His debut solo album got its sequel in 2007 when Carnival, Vol. 2: Memoirs of an Immigrant hit the shelves. The album had a diverse and lengthy guest list, with Akon, Mary J. Blige, Norah Jones, Shakira, Paul Simon, and Sizzla being just some of the names involved.
Our headline act for St. Lucia Jazz on Sunday May 11th, 2008 - Wyclef Jean!
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