Herb Alpert: Honesty and passion are everything


Herb Albert Readies New Album by Marc Myers

Herb Albert, 79, is still at it today. At the end of 1965, he went head to head with Bob Dylan and the Beatles. His album climbed to No. 1 in 1965 and his albums in each of the next three years topped the charts.  More than 40 years later (January, 2014), he won his ninth Grammy for “Steppin’ Out,” and on September 30 he will release “In the Mood.” (Excerpts from the interview below)

Q: A remake of “Chattanooga Choo Choo” might be stretching it, no?

A: The Glenn Miller song from 1941 just popped into my head and stayed there. A number of people, including my wife, Lani Hall, told me not to record it, that it was too square. But the song felt good and I’ve made a career out of doing what feels good to me. If a song works and it’s honest, people will get it.

Q: Does it bother you to be thought of as the “king of casual?”

There’s a word called “happy.” I’ve always wanted to be that, and my music and trumpet reflect this ambition. I listened to jazz when I was young, but I have a classical background and studied formally for eight years. I just react to what sounds good and try to stay as spontaneous as possible. I’ve never rehearsed most of the songs I’ve recorded. I have relative pitch, so if I hear a song once, I can play it back instantly. Mostly, I try to be honest and listen to my inner voice.

Q: Was “Rise’s” success in 1979 unexpected?
A: Everything in this business is unexpected. My nephew and producer-songwriter Randy Alpert initially wanted me to turn Tijuana Brass hits into dance records. It just didn’t feel right but I gave it a shot. I brought in musicians and we played down a disco version of a “Taste of Honey.” I couldn’t feel it. Randy had written “Rise” [with Andy Armer] and wanted us to do it at 120 beats per minute—the standard disco tempo back then. But I slowed it down to 100 beats, giving it more of a soulful feel, and it worked.

Q: How do you feel when someone calls your music cheesy?
A: [Laughs] They’re thinking too hard. Art is a mystery. There’s no way you can figure out what’s special if you analyze it. You either feel it or you don’t. The definition of art isn’t breaking your neck. Why would you do that? Honesty and passion are everything—at least they are for me.

Read Full Interview in wsj.com here: Herb Albert Readies New Album by Marc Myers


Find Herb Alpert’s New Album here: In the Mood.

 

Sunday Morning: Why I live in mortal dread


You’ll say you don’t have time to watch this.
It’s 13 minutes.
You need to move on to the next post.

And I’m telling you that
this woman is something special.

Don’t quit on this one.
Take it to the finish.

Good Sunday Morning.


Megan Alexandra Washington, 28, was born in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. She is an Australian musician and songwriter also known mononymously as Washington. Originally performing jazz music her style evolved to indie pop and alternative rock where she sings and plays piano and guitar.  She developed a stutter early in her life and continues to struggle with her speech.  Find her website here: washingtonmusic.com.au. Find her album on iTunes here: I Believe You Liar

Saturday Morning Coffee


Topology is quintet from Australia formed in 1997. They perform throughout Australia and abroad and have to date released four albums. Find their album on iTunes here: Difference Engine


Do You Feel


José James, 36, is a singer songwriter from Minneapolis, and is best known for performing and blending modern jazz and hip-hop. James joined the Blue Note roster in 2013 when he released his breakout album No Beginning No End to wide acclaim. With its irrepressible lead single “Trouble,” the album release found José making national TV appearances on ConanLate Show With David Letterman, andTonight Show With Jay Leno.

The New York Times praised his “cool and confident” album, adding that it “sounds like the result of the black-pop continuum, jazz and soul and hip-hop and R&B, slow-cooked for more than 50 years.” NPR Music raved that “James makes utterly contemporary music,” noting that he “skirts categories with ease, fitting in with current R&B innovators like Frank Ocean or Miguel, yet maintaining a strong awareness of a lineage that stretches from Ray Charles to Marvin Gaye to Lou Rawls to Maxwell.”

Find this tune on his 2013 Album titled: No Beginning No End

José James official site and his full bio can be found at: josejamesmusic.com


Don’t Let Me Go


Jarle Bernhoft, 38also known as Bern/hoft, is a Norwegian singer, multi-instrumentalist, composer and lyricist. Bernhoft is from Nittedal in Norway, but currently lives in New York.

what he [Bernhoft] did with those few tools was quite extraordinary. Using them, and via a process of instant recording, looping and layering, he was able to create the sound of a full band – including all the instrumental parts plus backing singers on rich harmonies – and it was all just him.”  – The Guardian

Find his website here: Bernhoft.org

Find his new album released last month here: Islander / Bernhoft


Liquid Spirit


Gregory Porter, 42, is a Grammy Award winning American jazz vocalist, songwriter, and actor. Gregory Porter won the 2014 Grammy for best jazz vocal album, Liquid Spirit.

Find his album on iTunes here.


Mindi Abair


Mindi Abair, 44, was born in St. Petersburg, Florida. She is an smooth jazz saxophonist. Mindi started playing the piano at age five, and started playing alto saxophone at the age of eight, when her elementary school band instructor laid out instruments on the first day of band class and instructed each student to pick the instrument they most wanted to play. Mindi has toured and/or recorded with the Backstreet Boys, Duran Duran, Mandy Moore, Josh Groban, Adam Sandler, Keb’ Mo’, Lalah Hathaway, Lee Ritenour, Teena Marie, John Tesh, Bobby Lyle, Jonathan Butler, Peter White and Rick Braun. She toured with Aerosmith in 2012. In 2003, Abair moved from pop to jazz. (Source: Wiki)


Rhye


Rhye is an R&B musical duo based in Los Angeles, California. Its members are Canadian singer Milosh and Danish instrumentalist Robin Hannibal.  Milosh’s voice and the band’s instrumentation are likened to those of British-Nigerian singer Sade and to those of Michael Franks. Mike Milosh was born in Toronto, Canada and is an electronic musician and vocalist. He was a classically-trained cellist from age 3 and had become a jazz aficionado. He later moved to Berlin, Germany to pursue music as a vocalist and a producer. Robin Hannibal was a member of the Danish duo Quadron an indie pop, electronica, soul, jazz and rap formation.

If you liked this tune, check out “The Fallhere and “3 Dayshere .

Rhye’s debut album titled “Woman” was released in 2013 and can be found on iTunes here.


Better than


Related Post: Lake Street Dive


Friday Night: Laura Mvula


Laura Mvula (née Douglas), 27, is a British soul singer-songwriter from the U.K. Her debut album Sing to the Moon was released in March 2013. In 2005, Mvula sang with an a cappella group set up by her aunt. In 2008, she formed a jazz/neo-soul group called Judyshouse, singing lead vocals and wrote material for the band. She is also Director of a Community Gospel Choir, founded by Black Voices. While she was working as a supply teacher in a Birmingham secondary school, she started writing songs on her laptop. She was working as a receptionist when she sent out two demos to several people in the music industry. The Guardian described her music as “gospeldelia”, calling it a new musical genre.  In December 2012, Mvula was shortlisted for the Critics’ Choice award at the 2013 BRIT Awards. In December 2012, she was nominated for the BBC’s Sound of 2013 poll, and finished in fourth position.  (Source: Wiki)

 


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