James Brown · We Got The Change

“Can you imagine James Brown saying, ‘We got to change’?' Well, he did,” says William “Bootsy” Collins. “And who's playing bass? Little ol’ funky me. Let's go!”

A never-before-released James Brown song, “We Got To Change,” stream HERE, makes its debut today on Republic/UMe.

“James Brown always leaned into the social tip,” Bootsy continues. “He always was trying to keep the youngsters informed and the people informed on what’s going on. The new breed was coming in and certain things were going out. He loved to inform people on what was coming and what was going to be because he felt like he was part of it, and he was.”

Recorded at Miami’s Criteria Studios on August 16, 1970, “We Got To Change” was laid down during a pivotal period in the world of James Brown - a few months earlier, longtime members of his famed James Brown Orchestra had walked out.

Brown quickly assembled a new group anchored by guitarist Phelps “Catfish” Collins and bassist William “Bootsy” Collins, two young brothers from Cincinnati. They brought a harder edge and a fresh identity to Brown’s music on such singles as “Get Up (I Feel Like Being) a Sex Machine,” “Super Bad,” and “Soul Power.” Brown called them The J.B.’s.

Their Criteria session featured a reunion with one of Brown’s 1960s sidemen: the great Clyde Stubblefield. “The Funky Drummer,” as he was known, would grace several of Brown’s subsequent hits and become one of the most sampled drummers of the hip-hop era. Also on the track is James Brown’s longtime No. 2, Bobby Byrd, who is heard alongside Brown on the chorus.

“We Got To Change” is another example of James Brown’s social outreach seen in singles like “Don’t Be a Dropout,” “Say It Loud I’m Black and I’m Proud,” “Get Up, Get Into It, Get Involved” and “King Heroin.”

It is also a testament to Brown’s diverse musical language, quoting from Little Jimmy Dickens’ 1949 hit “Take an Old Cold Tater (And Wait)” and the African-American anti-war spiritual, “Down by the Riverside.”

“The James Brown Revue invented the Funk,” says Funk author Rickey Vincent, “and the J.B.’s perfected it.” Newly unearthed and hitherto unheard, “We Got to Change” adds a critical page to the history of that perfection’s evolution.

Laila Biali · Your Requests

Highly acclaimed musician Laila Biali is a force on the jazz scene in Canada and beyond. The JUNO Award-winner’s distinctive voice is typically on dazzling display in her original music. Now, after ten years recording her own material, Biali turns her attention to the Great American Songbook with Your Requests,
her ninth album as bandleader. While showcasing her own impressive skill set, Biali gathers longtime collaborators for the outing: drummers Larnell Lewis (Snarky Puppy) and Ben Wittman along with bassist George Koller and tenor saxophonist Kelly Jefferson.

The shift back to more classic jazz material was inspired by Biali’s delight in fulfilling the song requests of her fans. When she asked her social media followers what tunes they’d like to hear 
her cover, more than 150 songs were submitted. Your Requests debuts the first collection of Biali’s dynamic and personal arrangements in response to her listeners, a “musical love letter.”

Right from the first track, a smart and energetic take on Dixon & Henderson’s Bye Bye Blackbird, Biali’s arranging ethos and piano chops are in full force while Jefferson and Lewis trade blistering solos over Koller’s anchoring bass ostinato. Biali also teams up with several vocalists for enthralling duets. JUNO Award-winner Emilie-Claire Barlow features on an exhilarating take on Rodgers and Hammerstein’s My Favourite Things. Scat sensation and recent JUNO winner Caity Gyorgy charms on a lilting delivery of Pennies from Heaven, while Kurt Elling lends his bold and brilliant voice to My Funny Valentine.

Biali also reinterprets the oft-played But Not For Me as a samba that showcases clarinet virtuoso Anat Cohe, Brazilian percussionist Maninho Costa, and Wittman on drums. The final guest appearance belongs to harmonica master Grégoire Maret, featured on a lush delivery of Antônio Carlos Jobim’s Corcovado (Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars). For the final track, Biali takes a surprising turn with a fierce instrumental rendition of Jerome Kern’s All the Things You Are. The searing, cleverly reharmonized arrangement closes out the record, reminding listeners that if one wades into familiar waters, they best have something new to say.

Kay-Ta · Distance

Osaka, Japan born guitarist Kay-Ta has supported/performed with artists ranging from pop/R&B artists like Grammy Winner Lalah Hathaway, Jenifer Hudson, Jody Watley, Amerie & Chante Moore; Contemporary Jazz artists including Jackiem Joyner, Keiko Matsui, & Michael Lington; to Jazz Fusion artists like Japanese drum prodigy, Senri Kawaguchi.

Along with US artists, he worked/toured with top Japanese artists like Chikuzen Satoh, Junko Yagami, Marlene. His classical crossover group Quattrosound was nominated for a 2013 Latin Grammy Award in the Best New Artist category. His solo debut album "ARRIVAL" won the 2016 15th annual Independent Music Award in The Best Jazz Instrumental Album category, and it's single “Synch With Me” ranked up to No.22 on Billboard Top Jazz Songs Chart. 2018 his song “Spring in Lviv” won USA Songwriting Competition in Instrumental Music category. His current project “Kay-Ta Crypto String Society” has performed many shows in US, Austria and Japan and getting great reviews.

Von Stupart · Love Your Smile

"After many years of performing and honing my musical craft, the year 2020 was the jump start of my recording career. In collaboration with guitarist/producer Adam Hawley, I was able to create wonderful tunes to share with the world. I’ve released ten songs so far with more to come!

My newest release is "Love Your Smile". It is a song that is dear to my heart. We need more joy and laughter in this world. A smile is contagious and leaves us all in a feel-good place! Try it! I hope this song brings warmth and joy to your heart!

I’m forever grateful for all the wonderful support I’m receiving throughout this awesome journey." - Von Stupart

Greg Manning · Brother To Brother

A two-time GRAMMY award nominee with over a dozen Billboard #1 hits to his credit as a primary artist or producer, Greg Manning has had a remarkable career since moving to the USA from Switzerland in 2002.

An in-demand producer/composer and a graduate of Berklee College of Music, Greg is a three-time certified platinum Producer for Universal Music Switzerland with several Swiss chart toppers. He is the former keyboardist and Music Director for legendary GRAMMY award nominated artist Jonathan Butler and served as keyboardist for genre nobles Kirk Whalum, Gerald Albright, Mindi Abair, Will Downing, Richard Elliot, Brian McKnight and Chante Moore.

His own music is a joyful union of jazz, soul, and funk and has been describe as "Soul-Jazz at it's best".

"Brother To Brother is my first single for 2024 and I wanted to ring in the new year with an upbeat, energetic tune. I love the combination of piano and saxophone so I called tenor player Jimmy Reid to support the melody. Morris O'Connor who plays with Earth, Wind & Fire is the rhythm guitar player on the song. I hope your listeners enjoy listening to it as much as we did creating it." -Greg Manning

Allan Thomas · Mojo

I’m a singer, songwriter, guitar-slinger, recording artist and performer living and working on the island of Kauai in Hawaii. It’s been over 50 years since I released my first album, and I released my 7th studio album, The Journey in 2021. It was recorded in a year and a half at the start of the pandemic at Black Bamboo Recordings studio—allowing me to escape to the ocean to surf and windsurf between session dates.

I’m super excited to announce the release of the first single from my upcoming 8th album Mojo co-written with my longtime friend and guitarist Bryan Kessler.

With ‘Mojo’ I was trying to tackle and explore that ineffable something that fulfills one whatever it may be and whatever you may call it. It makes you feel whole, like you’re on the right track, like you stumbled upon the answer or a holy grail. It could take the shape of many things, but you know it when you experience it. Many people spend their lives in search of it sometimes briefly touching upon it, other times never finding it at all. May we all find our mojo.

Allan Thomas - vocal
Bryan Kessler - guitars
Michael Ruff - keyboards
Jimmy Johnson - bass
Keith Carlock - drums
Amanda Frazier - backing vocals

Gino Rosaria · Straighten Up

Keyboardist Gino Rosaria, born and raised in Curaçao, developed an interest in music at an early age. Growing up on a very culturally diverse island, Gino learned to speak four different languages fluently. The influence of the many cultures allowed him to learn and play many different kinds of music, which became a part of his identity. Later on, he grew to enjoy Jazz, Latin, and Classical music the most. Gino started performing regularly in his early teens.

Gino moved to the US in 2003 to study music under the world-renowned Daisy De Luca Jaffe. In 2009, he graduated with a Master’s degree in Classical Music Performance. Gino then started taking private Jazz lessons with Jazz pianist David Shelander, who studied with Bill Evans. During his time in the US. Gino went on to win many competitions and appeared on national TV and radio stations performing solo, chamber, and with orchestra. Today Gino performs and does studio work regularly with some of the best musicians around, including award-winning artists such as violinist Karen Briggs, Jazz clarinet player Tim Laughlin, flutist Kim Scott, jazz guitarist Adam Hawley, and flutist Althea Rene.

In 2016, Gino started a new project called Groove Symphony where he released all original music inspired by his newborn Simon. In 2017 Gino’s Groove Symphony project won an award for Best Funk/Fusion EP from the Akademia in Los Angeles. Today Gino travels as an educator teaching master classes, as a producer producing music for clients all over the world, as a sideman/musical director for many national acts, and as a performing artist continuously writing and performing original music. Gino also holds an artist-in-residence position at a mega-church in Pensacola FL.

Gino released his first contemporary jazz album in the summer of 2019. On that album, he features several heavy hitters such as Marcus Anderson, Althea Rene, Elan Trotman, Adam Hawley, and more. His radio single “Night Groove” made it onto Billboard within the first week! The single made it onto the top 30 on most of the contemporary jazz charts.

“My goals are to continue giving virtuoso piano performances in both Jazz and Classical music,” says Gino. His Curaçao roots are heard all over his music, and Gino is very proud of that.

Adam Hawley · Unstoppable

Guitarist and producer Adam Hawley has burst on to the scene as a celebrated and innovative artist, composer and band leader. Handpicked by Maurice White (founder of Earth, Wind, & Fire) he first debuted on the legend's label Kalimba Music. In all, Adam’s four albums and work as a producer have spawned an incredible 14 Billboard #1 hits. In it's first week, the 3rd record Escape was the #1 selling album in the nation, outselling every other Contemporary Jazz album as per Nielsen. The debut single went on to become the Billboard and Smooth Jazz Network Song of the Year for 2020.

Hawley followed this up with the 4th album Risin' Up; it's title track again reached the top of the Billboard charts in late '21. 2022 was particularly successful including four more #1's, culminating with 2022 song of the year. Coupling this with a robust touring schedule throughout the world, the best is yet to come.

Select Tour Date Highlights Include:

•Seabreeze Jazz Fest
•Java Jazz
•Mallorca Jazz Fest
•Berks Jazz Fest
•Dave Koz Cruise
•Newport Beach Jazz Festival
•Catalina Jazz Fest
•Napa Valley Jazz Getaway
•Smooth Jazz Cruise
•Cancun Jazz Fest
•Earl Klugh’s Weekend of Jazz
•Rehoboth Jazz Festival

In addition to touring as a leader, he has also played for Jennifer Lopez, Natalie Cole, Lalah Hathaway, The Manhattan Transfer, Brian McKnight, and appeared on American Idol in the house band to name a few. He also is an educator holding a Doctorate in Musical Arts from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.


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