Dan Kuramoto co-founded the contemporary jazz band Hiroshima, featuring Japanese instruments, in 1974. Throughout the years the band has been nominated for several Grammy awards and received two Gold albums. Multi-award winning program director Ray White, sat down backstage with Dan in November of 2021 to talk about the storied career of the band that launched in Los Angeles. Their latest album is 2020. In our showcase segment we honor our very good friend Nick Colionne, who unexpectedly passed away on January 1, 2022. A beloved jazz guitarist known for his enticing stage persona, we called Nick - Mr. Entertainment. You'll find shows featuring Nick on Episodes 006 and 118. Godspeed, Nick. We all miss you. On the leading edge of contemporary jazz...yep, it's the Coool CAT!
Chuck Brown, The Godfather of Go-Go, left this world on May 16, 2012. On the 10th anniversary of his passing, we celebrate his legacy on this episode. Chuck launched a subgenre of funk music that has a beat that just won't quit! This Grammy nominated vocalist and guitarist was, in many ways, as unique as the legandary James Brown. Multi-award winning program director Ray White sat down with Chuck in his touring R.V. in November of 2011 to learn more about the foundation of Go-Go music and other highlights of his career. Way Coool!! In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis features three awesome musicians - the legendary bluesman John Mayall whose latest album is The Sun Is Shining Down, super blues guitarist and vocalist Tinsley Ellis who just released Devil May Care and the very talented keyboardist Ron Reinhardt whose latest single features sax great Richard Elliot. From Go-Go...to Blues...to Contemporary Jazz, you'll find great variety of world-class musicians only on the Coool CAT.
Bassist Gerald Veasley landed on the national music scene in 1988 working with Weather Report's Joe Zawinul. In the early 1990's Gerald started to release solo albums on a regular basis, which now totals nearly a dozen. You'll also find him on other recordings including those by Grover Washington, Jr., Chuck Loeb, Special EFX and B.B. King. Ray White, producer of syndicated radio shows and podcasts, sat down with Gerald in November of 2021 to talk about the pioneers in contemporary jazz, highlights of his career, the demeanor of musicians in the jazz genre, being a radio jock and his latest album - Live At The South. Lisa Davis, your "Hostess with the Mostest," features the talented saxophonist, flutist and Vocalist Paula Atherton in our showcase segment. Paula's latest Top 5 hit is "Keep It Coming." We close out the show featuring a super Soul and R&B singer/songwriter, Leela James, whose latest release is See Me. Bringing you the latest and greatest from legacy bands and performers, spend 30 minutes hanging with the Coool CAT.
Marion Meadows is a saxophonist and composer whose sound is grounded in contemporary jazz and adult contemporary rhythm & blues. Since 1990, Marion has consistantly been on the smooth jazz charts. Coool CAT's Ray White caught up with Marion right before his set at the Jazz Legacy Foundation's Gala in November of 2021 to talk about his first musical instrument, changes in the music industry since he started his professional career, and his latest album - Twice As Nice. Lisa Davis features pop culture icon, Jennifer Lopez, who you'll find on the orginial motion picture soundtract Marry Me. Also, Lenny Williams, whose latest single is Can't Nobody, and guitarist Paul Brown who has 2 Grammy's and has been involved with over 60 #1 radio hits for himself and others. His latest album is Ones Upon A Time. Another jam-packed episode for your listening pleasure. By the way, you can also hear more from Marion Meadows on Episode 003.
Guitarist David P. Stevens is a funky, dynamic and exceptionally creative artist with a unique sound of his own and 8 solo albums under his belt. David recently earned his masters degree from Berklee College of Music. He's shared the stage with the best in the music business. In November of 2021, David hung out with award-winning program director Ray White to talk about his early years playing gospel music and transition into jazz. He also touched on his latest album Evolution and his writing style. In our showcase segment Lisa Davis, your "Hostess with the Mostest," features the super horn player Rick Braun - who just released a self-titled album, the mega-star Alicia Keys - who's sold over 65 million records which includes her latest Keys, and the contemporary jazz superstar Kenny G who recently released New Standards. Guitar, Trumpet, Sax and one of the largest selling female vocalists on the planet makes a great show - right here on the Coool CAT!
Gearld Albright launched his solo career as a saxophonist in 1987, releasing his first solo album. In addition, this 8-time Grammy award nominated musician has appeared in various television programs. Gerald collaborates with many other jazz musicians too, including the all-star cast of Summer Horns. Multi-award winning program director and radio producer, Ray White, talks with Gerald about his latest release G-Stream - which he recorded during the Covid pandemic. He also shares his insights into playing with the legendary drummer Alphonse Mouzon. Lisa Davis features two phenominal R&B singers in our showcase segment, who have just released new singles - Tony award winner Melba Moore and the 3-time Grammy winner, Maxwell! Bringing you the latest, and very best of Contemporary Jazz and Rhythm & Blues...stay tuned-in to the Coool CAT.
Ronnie Baker Brooks has blues in his blood. He's the son of legendary bluesman Lonnie Brooks. In 1998, Ronnie launched his solo career. Right out of the gate he was nominated for a Blues Music Award. With 4 solo albums to his credit, Ronnie has elevated his stature to the top level of the blues world. His latest solo project is Times Have Changed. Award-winning producer and and program director, Ray White, huddled up with Ronnie backstage in September of 2012 to talk about blending modern music with the blues, producing his projects and collaborations with other great blues musicians. In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis features three outstanding blues artists. Curtis Salgado whose latest effort is Damage Control, Canadian Colin James who recently released Open Road and the legendary Dion whose last effort features the blues and numerous guest artists on Stomping Ground. Ain't nothing but the blues on this episode from the coolest radio show on the planet...Coool CAT!
Saxman Will Donato can be found on dozens of albums by contemporary musicians throughout many music genres. His music is also present on soundtracks from serveral movie scores. Award-winning program director and radio programmer Ray White sat down with Will in November of 2021, before he hit the stage, to talk about his big break in music, headliners he's supported earlier in his career, and insights into his Elevate album - that feaures a #1 Billboard hit. In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis looks back at the marvelous career of Ronnie Spector, who launched The Ronettes in the late 1950's, and then went on to a stellar solo career. Ronnie released her final album - English Heart in 2016. Sax and Soul...you'll find it on the Coool CAT!
Nils is one of the most successful guitarists in contemporary jazz. His accomplishments include "Song of the Decade" 2001-2010, "Song of the Year" in 2011 and numerous hits at the top of the Billboard Smooth Jazz charts. He's also provided his skills as a songwriter and producer to others including George Benson, Brian Simpson and Lisa Addeo. In addition, you'll find Nils creating music for TV and film. Award-winning program director Ray White sat down with Nils before he hit the stage to talk about his youth in Germany, playing style, his latest release - Caught In The Groove and much more. In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis features the dynamic saxophonist Paul Taylor whose brand new album is titled, And Now This. Two really Coool CAT's on this episode, brought to you by Classic Artists Today.
Nick Colionne is one of contemporary jazz's most tireless and explosive live performers. He's the only musician in the history of the smooth jazz format to score five consecutive #1 hit singles on Billboard from a single album - The Journey (listen to our Episode 006.) He's certainly one of the top jazz guitarists today! National award-winning program director Ray White sat down with Nick, in October of 2021, who shared his insights on his recent breakthrough success, his new album Finger Painting, several highlights from his career, and... his favorite country song too. Your "Hostess with the Mostess," Lisa Davis, features two magnificent musicians who had songs towards the top of the end-of-the-year charts. Bobby Lyle, who released his Ivory Flow project, and saxman Kim Waters whose latest album is Shakedown. The Best of 2021 - proudly brought to you by the Coool CAT!!
Najee, a native of New York City, was among the early musicians to incorporate R&B and Soul into jazz music. Along with his dozen plus Top 10 albums, he has supported a who's who in the music industry including Prince, Herbie Hancock, Patti Labelle, Marcus Miller and dozens more. Award-winning program director Ray White spent time with Najee in October of 2021. Najee provided insights into contemporary jazz's evolution and other key events during his esteemed career. His latest release is Center of the Heart, which was nominated for the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Jazz Album. Lisa Davis, your "Hostess with the Mostest," celebrates the Holiday Season featuring Norah Jones whose seasonal album is titled I Dream of Christmas and also the phenomenal Jeff Lorber who recently released the holiday tune The First Noel. Another great holiday show from the Coool CAT family to yours!
Ken Navarro, guitarist and composer, has created a 26-album catalog with numerous Top 5 hits at national radio along the way. He launched his recording career playing with many of the greats including; John Patitucci, Dave Koz and Doc Severinsen. Ken's latest album is I Will Still Be Here, which continues his string of excellent contemporary jazz recordings. Your "Hostess with the Mostest" Lisa Davis, gives us the latest insights into "new" music from "classic" musicians in our showcase segment featuring saxman Richard Elliot and bassist extraordinaire - Brian Bromberg. Richard's latest project, Authentic Life, can be found towards the top of the charts. Brian's new release, A Little Driving Music, reinforces his talents as one of the best acoustic and electric bass players in the world. The Coool CAT puts you in the groove with the best contemporary and smooth jazz artists!
Greg Grainger, the drummer for Acoustic Alchemy, is known as one of the most dynamic musicians to come out of the Baltimore/Washington D.C. area. His level of professionalism led to artists ranging from Whitney Houston to Lonnie Listen Smith tapping him on their projects. Many know Greg as a member of Pockets, who recorded for Columbia Records in the late 1970's. You'll also find him keeping time for the Paul Reed Smith Band, In Gratitude and many other projects. Award-winning program director Ray White caught up with Greg on the road, in August 2021, to get the latest on his active schedule. With several platinum records to their credit, your "Hostess With The Mostest," Lisa Davis, features After 7 in our showcase segment. Their latest CD release is titled Unfinished Business. R&B and Contemporary Jazz fills the schedule on this episode, from the Coool CAT!
Roomful of Blues have been blending blues, soul, boogie-woogie, swing and jump blues music since 1967. They've garnered five Grammy nominations and secured seven Blues Music Awards throughout their storied career. Past members have included: Duke Robillard (Episode 65), Curtis Salgado, Sugar Ray Norcia and Al Basile. Award-winning program director Ray White caught up with band leaders Rich Lataille and Chris Vachon, in August of 2013, while the band was out on tour to talk about the legacy of the band and their album 45 Live - celebrating their 45th year as a band. Their latest release is titled In A Roomful of Blues. Lisa Davis features blues guitarist/singer Sue Foley, 2020 winner of the prestigious Koko Taylor Blues Music Award. Sue's new album is Pinky's Blues. Our second featured artist is The Rolling Stone's Ronnie Wood, who pays tribute to the blues on his latest release, Mr. Lucky, that includes former Stones' member Mick Taylor. The Blues...nothing but the Blues on this episode from the Coool CAT!
Bill Heller has been the keyboardist for the innovative contemporary jazz group, The Rippingtons, for over two decades. Also in-demand as a session musician, Bill has many projects under his belt during his music career. A talented songwriter and producer, he has released two solo albums including his recent project Passage. Coool CAT's award-winning program director, Ray White, caught up with Bill before he hit the stage to talk about his new album, his long standing relationship with Russ Freemen and The Rippingtons, and many other happenings in his life. Your "Hostess with the Mostess," Lisa Davis, features the classic Motown group, The Temptations - who have brand new music out featuring Smokey Robinson, in our showcase segment. Smoothing your way for 30 awesome minutes, presented by your friends at Classic Artists Today.
Pieces of a Dream celebrates 45 years in 2021, bringing audiences the best in contemporary jazz and R&B. Co-founder Curtis Harmon beats the skins and provides the backbeat for their awesome sound. 22 of the bands albums have landed on the charts with the latest being On Another Note. Coool CAT's executive producer Ray White caught up with Curtis in February of 2012 talking with him about his relationship with the legendary Grover Washington, Jr., their Soul Intent album and other highlights from their storied history. Be sure to listen to more insights from the band on Episodes 30 and 96. Our "Hostess with the Mostest," Lisa Davis features chart-topping contemporary jazz guitarist Nick Colionne in our showcase segment. Nick's latest album Finger Painting was named due to the visualization of his Epiphone ES 175 guitar as a musical paintbrush painting all the colorful notes he plays. You're leading source featuring the best from the world of Contemporary Jazz... the Coool CAT!
Paula Atherton can consistently be found towards the top of the smooth jazz charts, showcasing her talents on the saxophone, flute and on vocals. In the past 5 years she's emerged as a star in this music genre. On this episode, multi-award winning program director Ray White catches up with Paula before she takes the stage to talk about the development of her music career, her latest #1 hit "Summer Song", importance of band members and colleagues as team players, components that make a #1 song and much more! Paula's latest album is Can You Feel It. Listen to more from Paula on Episode 074. In our showcase segment, show hostess Lisa Davis features Paul Brown, whose latest album is Ones Upon A Time and also the dynamic Brian Culbertson, who recently released Music From The Hang! The best in Smooth Jazz... we have it here on the Coool CAT!!
Ivan Neville, the son of Aaron Neville, has been on the national music scene since the mid-1980's having played with The Rolling Stones and Bonnie Raitt. After releasing several solo albums, he launched the band Dumpstaphunk - whose first project was released in in 2007. This "phunky" band has a new album out titled Where Do We Go From Here. On this episode Classic Artists Today's executive producer Ray White, fills in for Lisa Davis, and talks with Ivan about the new album and his family heritage. You'll also find Ivan on Episode 038! In our showcase segment, we focus on new projects by rhythm and blues legends, The Spinners, who just released their first new album in over 30 years - Round The Block and Back Again. We'll also feature the Grammy award winner Macy Gray! Funk city...right here on the Coool CAT.
Ken Knox, of Chairmen of the Board, has played a key role in the band for over 40 years. The vocalist/songwriter/leader, is fronting the band into their 5th decade of pleasing audiences everywhere. Inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame in 1999, the band was formed in Detroit in 1967. Multi-award winning program director Ray White caught up with Ken in May of 2018, just before the band took the stage. They talked about southeastern U.S. "beach music," former lead singer General Norman Johnson - who passed away in 2010, and Ken's role in continuing the bands' legacy today. You'll find Part 1 of our interview and much more on Episode 044. Chairmen of the Board's brand new single is Jack and Jill. In our showcase segment, your "hostess with the mostess," Lisa Davis, highlights Kool and the Gang and their co-founder Dennis D.T. Thomas who died on August 7, 2021. Their latest album is Perfect Union. Soul, R&B, and "Beach Music" at its' best...on the Coool CAT!
Bob James is a giant among Jazz musicians today. Discovered by Quincy Jones in the early 1960's, Bob has been tapped for almost every jazz award in that music genre. Along with his extensive solo work, Bob has collaborated with well over a hundred other musicians on recording projects. He's also received worldwide acclaim with his group Fourplay, who has released over a dozen albums -with the latest title Silver. Bob's latest release, On Vacation, is a collaborative effort with Till Bronner, a trumpeter from Germany. Award-winning program director Ray White releases Part 2 of his May of 2017 interview with Bob (you'll find Part 1 in Episode 015.) In this episode Bob shares his insights working with the late Grover Washington, Jr., recording Feels Like Making Love, and the formation and success of Fourplay. In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis features a saxophonist/vocalist whose recent albums and songs have elevated towards the top of the smooth jazz charts - Paula Atherton. Her latest release is Can You Feel It. The legendary artists and rising stars...right here on the Coool CAT!
Jonathan Butler is a multi-nominated Grammy singer-songwriter and guitarist who hails from Cape Town, South Africa. 12 of his albums have landed on the Top 20 charts in the jazz category. Many more on the R&B and Gospel charts. Jonathan sat down backstage with award winning program director Ray White, in December of 2010, to talk about his So Strong release, his holiday tour, the changes in South Africa, writing songs for other artists and much more! His latest album is Close To You. Coool CAT's Lisa Davis features saxman Euge Groove in our showcase segment. His latest album is Sing My Song. She doubles-up by also featuring keyboardist Brian Simpson, who just released All That Matters. Three of the very best in Contemporary Jazz, coming to you in this jam-packed episode.
John Oates' musical roots draws from his early days growing up in Philadelphia. He cut his teeth on Soul, R&B, and Blues music. The guitarist, singer, songwriter and record producer hooked up with Daryl Hall (signing with RCA Records in 1972), to become arguably the most successful duo in Pop/Rock history. John didn't record his first solo album until 2002. Releasing nine to date, these albums feature songs that shows his passion for Americana, Roots, Soul, R&B and Blues music. In this February of 2010 interview with award-winning program director Ray White, John touches on his solo material, influence of soul and R&B music on his career and a wonderful compilation from Hall and Oates. John's latest solo album, with his band, is Live From Nashville. Your hostess Lisa Davis, features a member of The Sax Pack, Jeff Kashiwa, who has released 10 solo albums throughout his career - in our showcase segment. You'll also find Jeff's great sax work on 7 albums as a member of The Rippingtons. His latest solo release is Sunrise. Soul...R&B...Blues...Contemporary Jazz, we cover it all on this edition from the Coool CAT!
Kirk Whalum has a total of 12 Grammy nominations with 1 win to his credit. This jazz saxophonist and songwriter has toured or recorded with the likes of Whitney Houston, Luther Vandross, Bob James and BWB. Kirk was the inaugural jazz legend honoree of the National Museum of African American Music. Multi-award winning program director Ray White sat down with Kirk before he took the stage to talk about his special relationship with Bob James, tours with mega-stars, his museum induction and his latest release Humanite. In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis features the front man for Incognito - Jean-Paul "Bluey" Maunick, whose recent solo album is Tinted Sky. Also highlighted is saxophonist Steve Cole who has a brand new project, Smoke and Mirrors, that will be released soon. You'll also find Steve's great sax work in the band The Sax Pack! The coolest of Smooth Jazz and R&B...right here on the Coool CAT!!
Lonnie Listen Smith has played with many of the iconic jazz pioneers throughout his career. Launching his own band, The Cosmic Echoes, he recorded a number of albums regarded as classics in the fusion, smooth jazz and acid jazz genres. Lonnie's talents on keyboards and piano can be found on several dozen albums throughout his illustrious career. Award-winning program director Ray White sat down with Lonnie in October of 2014 reliving many of his career highlights. Our Coool CAT hostess, Lisa Davis, hooks you up with Jeff Lorber Fusion - whose latest album is Space-Time and also The Jazz Holdouts, who have that contemporary "chill" jazz groove in their music. Uncovering the wide spectrum of jazz, right here on the Coool CAT!
Mark Wenner has led The Nighthawks since they launched in 1972. An outstanding harmonica player and vocalist, Mark has had some super talented musicians in the band throughout the years including Warren Haynes, Jimmy Hall, Jimmy Thackery and Jimmy Nails. The blues and roots music played by The Nighthawks withstands the test of time. Award-winning program director Ray White caught up with Mark backstage in July 2019 to talk about the bands' All You Gotta Do release, how he chooses blues standards for his albums and shows, and about the current band lineup - and much more! Coool CAT's hostess, Lisa Davis, features the legendary guitarist Steve Cropper in our showcase segment. You'll remember Steve as a member of Booker T. and the MG's and The Blues Brothers. His brand new album is Fire It Up. Lisa also highlights Shemekia Copeland - the daughter of the great blues guitarist/singer Johnny Copeland. She just received the prestigious UK Blues Award for International Blues Artist of the Year. Shemekia's latest project is titled, Uncivil War. The Blues thrive on the Coool CAT!!