New York-based Atherton has opened for the likes of Chuck Loeb, Patti Austin, Tito Puente and saxophonist Najee. In 2004 her debut CD ‘Let Me Inside Your Love’ made its mark on the national contemporary jazz charts, and in 2006 a cut from this album, ‘I Long For Your Love’ was included on the compilation ‘Ladies of Jazz, ’ which also featured Natalie Cole, Candy Dulfer and Eliane Elias. Her television work includes appearances on the ‘Today’ show, Good Morning America, and as bandleader for the Lifetime network show, ‘Girl’s Night Out’. In addition, Paula performed at fundraisers during Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and in 2002 wrote the score for the independent film ‘The Definition of Insanity’.
She has crammed this musical pedigree into every note of ‘Groove With Me, ’ which opens with the zesty ‘Marimba Island’. It’s a track that evokes white crested waves breaking over warm white sand and shimmers with Atherton’s wonderful flute playing. This terrific example of textbook smooth jazz is in the good company of the funky yet melodic ‘Block Party, ’ which is blessed by Chieli Minucci on guitar and the outstanding Dave Delhomme on keyboards. Atherton on alto sax is tremendous, and she stays with it for ‘There Ain’t Nothing.’ Opening with a clear hint of those killer chords from the Boz Scaggs classic ‘Lowdown’ the tune drips with all the rhythm and melody you will ever need and finds Atherton delivering on every level. Later, she reprises the song with her own picture perfect vocals. The result is just as good, and given Atherton’s prowess as a vocalist, it’s surprising that she sings on only three other tracks.
The first, ‘Whenever You Come Around’, is a breathtaking example of smooth R & B that has the added benefit of Darin Brown on keys whilst the heartfelt ‘Send Down An Angel’ (presently climbing the pop charts) allows Atherton to demonstrate another side of her myriad talents. The equally romantic ‘Falling’ provides more of the same, but when Paula is joined by former Tower of Power trumpeter Greg Adams for the ultra funky ‘JB, ’ they crank up the volume for a high octane tribute to the great James Brown. Baron Raymonde’s tenor and baritone sax adds extra horsepower as the whole piece fizzes with a horn-driven frenzy. This same energy is a key component of the aptly titled ‘Funk It Up’ for which Atherton calls on noted keyboard player Onaje Allan Gumbs, and is a feature of a CD on which she is able to move seamlessly from the uptempo, to the tranquil, and all points between. On the tender ‘Winds Of Change (Yes We Can), ’ she is at her melodic best on soprano sax. ‘Light As Air’ is jazzy, interesting and beautifully performed. The album’s only cover, the Ashford & Simpson composition ‘You’re All I Need To Get By’ is big and brassy, thanks in no small part to more great trumpet from Adams.
To select a favorite from a collection replete with riches is no easy task, but all things considered, this accolade goes to the edgy mid tempo ‘Say It Baby’. Lionel Cordew on drums and bassist Schuyler Deale lay down a massive foundation; Brown is again immense on keys and, between blowing up a storm on sax, Atherton still finds time to combine with Naomion for some high calibre backing vocals.
‘Groove With Me’ is a real gem and comes highly recommended.
Krzysztof Urbański graduated from the Music Academy in Wroclaw. He is well known for taking part in concerts and festivals (Getxo Jazz Festival in , Gouvy Jazz Festival in, JnO Fest; Gent Jazz Festival, Ethno Jazz Fest; Hoeilaart, Jazz Jamboree, Olympus Jazz Fest; with many renowned musicians in the genre.
In 2007 Krzysztof won first place at “The Polish Review of Jazz Bands” in Gdynia. Shortly after he took the award at the International Competition of Jazz Soloists “Jazz Challenges” in Szczecin, where the jury consisted of such acknowledged personalities as, Billy Harper, Clarence Seay and Steve Turre. At the same competition, Krzysztof took home the top audience choice award.
In December 2007 Krzysztof’s band again came on top and took first place at the international “Jazz Juniors” competition in Cracow where Krzysztof was honored with “The Best Instrumentalist of The Competition” award. At the festival “Jazz By The Oder” (JnO) in Wroclaw in 2008 Krzysztof Urbański was proclaimed “Jazz Personality of the year”.
In the summer of 2008 Krzysztof’s Quartet qualified for the finals of “Hoeilaart International Jazz Competition” in and walked away with first place having beaten 60 other music bands from all around the world. In addition Krzysztof was awarded “The Best Soloist” prize.
In January 2009 Krzysztof Urbański won scholarship from Department of Culture “Young ”. In March 2009 Krzysztof received press prize by winning the
“wARTo” music award from “Gazeta Wyborcza”. In April 2009 Krzysztof Urbański and his Quartet received prestigious prize “TVP Kultura” award from the national broadcaster.
Since 2010 Krzysztof is an Official Endorser of P.Mauriat Saxophones, ‘Florian Popa Exclusive Saxophone’s Ligatures and “AMT Saxophone Microphones”. Krzysztof is named “New Hope of Polish Jazz Music” . In 2010 Krzysztof recorded his debut album named simply “Urbanski” which was very well received by the critics. This album was sold in the number 5.000 cd’s in all Europe and the United States. In February 2012 Krzysztof was selected from among hundreds of musicians from around the world to the live audition at The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz in Los Angeles California (USA)
During this audition judges such a great musicians as Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Jimmy Heath and Kenny Burrell were very impressed of Krzysztof‟s playing and The Institute offered him help to find contract with renowned label and start create professional career.
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