Keith Killgo co-founded The Blackbyrds in 1973. The group featured some of the legendary trumpeter Donald Byrd's students. This R&B and Jazz/Funk band received a Grammy nomination for their 1975 hit "Walking in Rhythm" that has sold over a million copies. The band still tours today and their last studio album was Gotta Fly. Multi-award winning program director Ray White talks with Keith about the historic start of the band and shares recent news and plans that the band has moving forward. On this special end-of-the-year show your "Hostess with the Mostess," Lisa Davis, highlights 3 of the hottest artists of 2022 who ended up towards the top of the Billboard charts. Brian Culbertson, Paula Atherton and Rihanna! All of us at Coool CAT wish you the very best for the coming year and beyond!
Contemporary Jazz stalwarts Dave Koz and Rick Braun join us on this holiday special! Dave Koz and Friends (David Benoit, Rick Braun, Peter White and Rebecca Jade) have recently released Christmas Ballads - 25th Anniversary Collection. Dave and Rick share their insights on the Christmas tours and holiday albums that have been produced throughout the years. Saxtress Mindi Abair is our "showcase artist" on this episode, too!! She is currently out on her "I Can't Wait for Christmas" tour with Vincent Ingala, Lindsey Webster and Adam Hawley. Ray White and Lisa Davis, bringing you the spirit of the holidays, right here on the Coool CAT!!! As long as you're in the holiday mood, catch our previous specials on Episodes 117, 93, 72, 52 and 26.
Curtis Harmon and James Lloyd co-founded Pieces of a Dream in 1976. At the forefront of the contemporary jazz genre, they sat down and talked with our multi-award winning program director Ray White. The guys shared their insights into their new album Fired Up!, life during the COVID pandemic and their new protege - Justin Lee Schultz. Be sure to hear more from Curtis, James and the band on Episodes 30, 96, 112 and 130. In our "showcase segment," Lisa Davis features Mindi Abair who's produced ten No. 1 radio singles over her solo career. Her latest album is Forever. Guitarist Nils is also featured on this episode! With 15 Top 20 radio hits to his credit, his brand new project is Cool Shades. You're #1 source for the best in contemporary jazz is right here on the Coool CAT!!
Jackiem Joyner is a dynamic saxophonist who has released 8 solo projects during his career. Since hitting the road, he's toured or recorded with Keiko Matsui, Rick Braun, Kirk Whalum, and Jonathan Butler - just to name a few. Jackiem has had several songs reach the top of the contemporary jazz charts. In addition, he has authored several novels which span from gritty urban thrillers to imaginative science fiction stories. Multi-award winning program director Ray White caught up with Jackiem who talked about his new single "Say What," his unfortunate injury, releasing singles and EP's strategy, writing songs and Radio Shack! Your "hostess with the mostess" Lisa Davis features the late (and great) Nick Colionne, whose posthumous album is Just Like That and also vocalist Lindsey Webster who released Reasons earlier in 2022. We're getting our groove on, here at the Coool CAT!
Will Downing is Mr. Sophisticated Soul, having recorded 25 albums over the past 35 years. His distinctive baritone voice has attracted fans worldwide and carved a unique niche in Soul and R&B music. Multi-award winning program director Ray White sat down with Will after his soundcheck to talk about his two latest albums Sophisticated Soul and The Song Garden, his radio show - "The Wind Down" and other great insights. You can find Will "Sittin' In With The CAT," on our very 1st episode, too. Your "Hostess with the Mostess," Lisa Davis, features Brian Culbertson, whose lastest release is The Trilogy, Pt. 3: White. We close out this show with a tribute to the iconic saxophonist Pharoah Sanders who passed away on September 24, 2022. Coool CAT is sharing a lot of love on this episode. Hope you'll listen in!
Adam Hawley is an awesome guitarist, composer and producer. During his emerging career, this "rising-star" musician has already had eleven #1 hits! Multi-award winning program director Ray White caught up with Adam after soundcheck in June of 2022 to talk about the beginning of his career, supporting many major stars in the music business, musicians who have influenced his career, his work as a music producer and his new Risin' Up album. Lisa Davis features the jazz icon Ramsey Lewis, who passed away on September 12, 2022, in our showase segment. A three-time Grammy winner, he recorded over 80 albums during his illustrious career. Ramsey was awarded 5 gold albums and in 2007 the National Endowment of the Arts presented him with their Jazz Masters Award. His last album was The Beatles Songbook and his memoir titled "Gentleman of Jazz" will be released in 2023. Be sure to listen to our interview with Ramsey on Episode 60, too! The best from the legacy (and rising jazz musicians), brought to you by the Coool CAT!
Rick Braun is one of the world's premier trumpet players. He also plays flugelhorn and other instruments too and has released 19 albums since 1992. His collaborations, R&R and BWB, has broadened his appeal among contemporary jazz fans. Also a composer and producer, Rick has over 20 #1 smooth jazz hits during his career. Multi-award winning program director Ray White sat down backstage with Rick in December of 2011 while he was touring with Dave Koz during Dave's Christmas Tour. Rick shared his insights about his first band, interest in the fluglehorn, collaboration with his good friend Richard Elliot and his awesome Sings With Strings release. His current project is titled Rick Braun. In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis features the latest from saxman Kim Waters who just dropped That Special Touch and the very latest on Earth, Wind & Fire, too! Be sure to check our Episode 002 for more from Rick Braun here on the Coool CAT!
Eric Gales started playing guitar in blues competitions when he was 11 years old. By the time he was 16, he secured a major recording contract. Guitar World named Eric the "Best New Talent" in 1991. He also performed with Carlos Santana at Woodstock '94. Over the years Eric released 19 albums and you'll also find him on many compilation releases. Many consider him one of the top guitarists in the world! Multi-award winning program director Ray White caught up with Eric backstage in November 2021 to talk about his early career as a child prodigy, his latest album Crown and much, much more. Perseverance has been a major theme of Eric's career. Check him out for yourself!! In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis features another guitarist whose music career is drenched in the blues, one of the greatest ever - Eric Clapton. His latest release is a live album - Nothing But The Blues, which features many blues standards that he recorded at The Fillmore in San Francisco in 1994 during his From The Cradle tour. The Coool CAT brings you two legendary musicians whose careers were heavily influenced by the Blues. Blues lovers, don't miss this one!!!
Paul Taylor has developed a stellar career of over 25 years blowing smooth jazz sounds on his alto and soprano saxophones. All 12 albums he's released has landed on Billboards's Top Jazz Charts. Multi-award winning program director Ray White hung out with Paul in June of 2022 to talk about his latest album And Now This, recording all musicians on the new album remotely, his creative partner Dino Esposito and also his favorite pastime! You can also check our more from Paul on Episode 34. In our showcase segment, we'll feature another super saxman - Dave Koz. One of his latest releases is A Romance Night In. We close out our show with the very latest on the super group Jazz Funk Soul, which features Jeff Lorber, Everette Harp and Paul Jackson, Jr. Their latest project is titled Forecast. Nothing but the coolest on the Coool CAT!
Tab Benoit is a master of the delta blues. An amazing guitarist, you'll find him on many of the "best of" lists as one of the top guitarists living today. Since the early 1990's he's released over a dozen albums and, along with a Grammy nomination, Tab has won several Blues Music Awards. Tab's also been a strong advocate for environmental issues and was featured in the IMAX film "Hurricane on the Bayou." Multi-award winning program director Ray White spent time with Tab in May of 2022 and they discussed industry recognition of his music endeavors, his recently released Legacy: The Best Of project, his Whiskey Bayou Records business and Voice of the Wetlands non-profit organization he launched. In our showcase segment Lisa Davis features Whiskey Bayou Records recording artist Anthony Rosano and the Conqueroos - a group of steller musicians on-the-rise who's opened for ZZ Top, Bob Seger, Gov't Mule, Styx and other major bands. Their last album was a self-titled project released in 2017, but their new music is in the can and will be dropping very soon! We close out this episode with blues powerhouse Shaun Murphy who has numerous solo albums out and sang with Eric Clapton, Bob Seger, Little Feat, Meatloaf and many others. Her latest album is Flame Still Burns. You can find her "Sittin' in with the Coool CAT," on Episode 66. Best of the blues, right here on the Coool CAT!
Nelson Rangell is a superb saxophonist and also outstanding playing the piccolo. As a student he won Best Jazz and Best Pop/Rock instrumental soloist in Down Beat magazine's National Student Recording Awards. Nelson's career took off in the late 1980's when he signed with GRP record company. In November of 2021 Ray White, producer of Coool CAT, caught up with Nelson before taking the stage to talk about several of his early career stints as a sideman, his relationship with GRP Records, being part of a Grammy nominated project, music distribution in today's marketplace and his latest album By Light. In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis features the great trumpeter Rick Braun whose latest project is self-titled along with keyboardist and composer Patrick Bradley who released his Exhale album last year. We're taking it to the limit of your listening pleasure, right here on the internationally renown Coool CAT!
Chieli Minucci co-founded Special EFX in the early 1980's, producing excellent compositions that blended Latin Rhythm and Contemporary Jazz music. Solo or with Special EFX, Chieli has released nearly three dozen albums throughout his career. You'll also find his guitar work on songs by Lionel Richie, Jennifer Lopez, Lionel Hampton, Marc Anthony and many more superstar artists. In our November of 2021 interview with Chieli, the CAT's multi-award winning program director - Ray White, talked with him about his start in the music business, early days with GRP Records and his latest projects including Special EFX All-Stars, his current album Twenty Twenty 2 and his recent solo album Someone's Singing. You'll also find more from Chieli on Episode 061. In our showcase segment, your "Hostess with the Mostest," Lisa Davis, features the latest from the dynamic saxman Richard Elliot, whose recent album is Authentic Life. "Where Old School is New School...Again," that's right it's the Coool CAT!
James Lloyd is keyboardist and co-founder of Pieces of a Dream. He was only a senior in high school when his first album was released. James also has written and/or produced songs for dozens of other recording artists aside from Pieces. You'll find performances by him on television and film too. Multi-award winning program director Ray White caught up with James in January 2000 to talk about the bands' On Another Note album, touring, his solo work, supporting projects of other musicians and his frightening airplane trip! The band's recent follow-up album is Fired Up! In our showcase segment, Lisa Davis features the former lead vocalist of the Gap Band, Charlie Wilson, whose latest single is No Stoppin' Us. And we wind up this episode with the multi-talented saxophonist and record company executive, Walter Beasley, who just released Meet Me At My Place. This episode has a groove that just doesn't miss...it's Coool CAT time!!
Maysa Leak is at the top of her game as one of the leading R&B/Jazz female vocalists today. She's been honored as a recipient of many awards including Soul Train's first Centric Award in 2009 and garnered her first Grammy nomination in 2014. In 2018, Maysa became the founder/owner of her own record label, Blue Velvet Soul Records. Her latest release is Music For Your Soul. In November of 2021, she shared details about her new record company, the new album with help from her friends and much more with multi-award winning program director Ray White. In our showcase segment Lisa Davis features the fantastic saxophonist Gerald Albright, whose latest project is titled G-Stream 2: Turn It Up along with contemporary jazz superstar Brian Culbertson who just released the Trilogy Pt. 3: White. We close out the show with the amazing guitarist Marc Antoine, who dropped Something About Her in 2021. A jammed-packed episode you don't want to miss! Coool CAT - "Where Old School is New School...Again."
David Benoit is a three-time Grammy nominated pianist who has charted over 25 albums since 1980. He has arranged, conducted and performed music for many popular jazz and pop artists including David Sanborn, Patti Austin, Kenny Loggins and Brian McKnight. In our December of 2012 interview with David, he shares with our executive producer Ray White insights on his early career, his recording days with GRP Records, Benoit/Freeman Project and his album Conversation. David's latest album is A Midnight Redezvous. Lisa Davis, "Your Hostess with the Mostest," showcases guitarist Norman Brown, whose latest release is Let's Get Away. In addition, blue-eyed soul singer/keyboardist Michael McDonald - who's out on the 50th Anniversary Tour with The Doobie Brothers, is featured. Smooth sounds, hits you right in your soul, on the Coool CAT!
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.