Great News! "Colors of Life" has been selected in four categories (1. Male Singer, 2. Best Vocal Album, 3. Electric Piano, 4. Organ) for the "36th Annual Jazz Station Awards / The Best Jazz of 2014" conducted by jazz historian, journalist and educator Arnaldo DeSouteiro! http://jazzstation-oblogdearnaldodesouteiros.blogspot.com.br/2014/12/the-best-jazz-of-2014.html
"Colors of Life" was picked by highly respected jazz critic/historian/author W. Royal Stokes for his "Best and Notable New Releases 2014"!!! What a truly great honor for me. http://www.wroyalstokes.com/2014/12/31/best-notable-new-releases-2014/
"Colors of Life" was selected by Carol Banks Weber, AXS Contributor, as one of the "Top 15 Jazz Vocal Albums of 2014"!! I am honored once again! "Thank You" to Ms. Banks Weber for the recognition! http://www.axs.com/top-15-jazzy-vocal-albums-of-2014-get-em-while-they-re-hot-35355
"Colors of Life" was selected by Michael G. Nastos, WDEE-TV's News Anchorman and Jazz Advocate/Connoisseur, as one of WDEE-TV'S "Best Jazz CDs of 2014"!! I am honored and humbled once again. "Thank You" to Mr. Nastos for the recognition. I also want to say "Thank You" again to the musicians, songwriters, arrangers, and engineers who contributed to making "Colors of Life a reality for me. Without you all "Colors of Life" would not be on ANY "Best Of" list. http://wdee-tv.com/relaunch2/2014/12/04/best-jazz-cds-of-2014/
Join me for my interview on KKFI 90.1 FM (Kansas City, MO) with DJ Barry Jackson on Tuesday, November 18 at 12 pm EST on the Tuesday MidDay Medley! You can live stream the show at www.kkfi.org. Hope you can tune in next week!
An unreleased track of mine entitled "All the Things" has been featured on the brand new Life and Soul Mixtape 2. Click the link below and check it out along with all the other great songs. http://lifeandsoul.podomatic.com/entry/eg/2010-03-13T14_11_20-08_00
Chicago-Born Vocalist and Jazzschool Institute Student Jua Howard Is First Recipient of the School's Mark Murphy Vocal Jazz Scholarship Newly Established Scholarship Was Funded by October All-Star Salute to Murphy At Yoshi's Oakland Berkeley, Calif. Nov. 4, 2009 Jua Howard, a 30-year-old singer from Chicago and a member of the Jazzschool Institute's 2009 entering class, has just been named the first recipient of the newly established Mark Murphy Vocal Jazz Scholarship, it has been announced by Jazzschool Institute Vocal Director Laurie Antonioli. "Mark's influence has inspired not only my singing," says Antonioli, "but my devotion to jazz education, as he was my first vocal teacher." Antonioli, along with other Bay Area vocal stars (and Murphy protege's) Kitty Margolis, Madeline Eastman, Ann Dyer, Bobbe Norris, and Joyce Cooling, performed at an October 20 fund-raiser for the scholarship which was held at Yoshi's in Oakland. The idea of celebrating Murphy and his mentorship, of "paying it forward," in Margolis's words, was the primary incentive for establishing the new scholarship. "We selected Jua Howard, a young man who is not only talented but very motivated to graduate," says Antonioli. "We're thrilled that we are able to help him realize his goals and dreams by presenting him with the first Mark Murphy Vocal Jazz Scholarship." Jua, who goes by his first name professionally (it means "Sun" in Swahili), attended the Murphy tribute concert at Yoshi's but never expected to be on the receiving end of the evening's fund-raising. "I am forever grateful to [Jazzschool Founder/Director] Susan Muscarella and Laurie Antonioli for believing enough in me to support my dream of being a world-class jazz artist," says Jua. "I sacrificed a lot to move to San Francisco and attend the Jazzschool Institute, but I think this is God's way of telling me I made the right choice. I plan to represent the scholarship's namesake and the Jazzschool Institute to the best of my abilities." A graduate of Emory University in Atlanta, Jua relocated to Washington, DC in 2002 and had the opportunity to work as a featured background vocalist with the Blackbyrds. After recording and releasing his debut album, Anticipation (2007), he found himself drawn more and more to jazz and eventually made the commitment "to equip myself with the necessary tools. That is why I decided to go back to school." The Jazzschool Institute Vocal Program "focuses on developing the solo artist rather than the Vocal Jazz Ensemble format you find in many universities and colleges," says Antonioli. "We have a world-class band accompanying the vocal students, and they are encouraged to build a repertoire that is both historically relevant and personally suited. The fine art of vocal jazz is a tradition we want to nurture in young singers, and we look forward to having many creative voices pass through our program. We also encourage anyone who'd like to support this art to donate to the Jazzschool Institute Mark Murphy Vocal Jazz Scholarship fund." Contributions to the Murphy scholarship are tax-deductible and may be made by check (made payable to the Jazzschool) or credit card (by calling the Jazzschool at 510-845-5373). Web Site: www.jazzschoolinstitute.org
I am featured on a music soundtrack for a great new book entitled, 7:33 a.m., by the talented author Monda Webb. I am fortunate enough to have three of my songs ( "Dream", "Push Aside the Hurt", "Ever After") included on this wonderful soundtrack along with several other gifted artists including Marcus Johnson, Terrence Cunningham, Temika Moore, Tonya Baltimore, Content Johnson, Mitch Gunz, Jason Jasper, Sean Miranda, and Asheley Jenkins. Please visit Monda's websites (www.latebloomer2000.com & www.myspace.com/monda_latebloomer2000) and check out her thought-provoking novel. You can contact her at email@example.com to order your autographed copy with the accompanying CD. It costs $18 w/shipping and $20 if you want it gift wrapped.
I have a song included on a new release out of the UK entitled "The Contemporary Soul Songbook: Volume I" released from Soul Unsigned Records! The song featured on the compilation is "Lost Paradise" created by Kevin Williams and Marc Fisher. I am truly honored to be a part of such a great album amongst other talented soul artists. Check the album out at Cdbaby.com, Amazon.com, Soulbrother.com, Crazybeatrecords.com, and Dustygrooves.com.