Jazz & Cocktails
JAZZ & COCKTAILS, the new CD from singer Byron Motley, is a beautifully chosen collection that pairs some of the best-known standards with lesser-heard jazz pearls, performed by one of the most arresting voices in popular music today. Byron's smooth voice and style harks back to the swingin' greats of earlier decades like Nat King Cole, Billy Eckstein, Jimmy Scott, Johnny Mathis, and Tony Bennett. Byron takes advantage of settings that range from acoustic to Big Band as his vocals sparkle through cool and stylish renditions of the playful 'June Night', sophisticated 'One Day I'll fly Away', the swinging 'Big City' to poignant ballads like 'Lush Life', 'My Foolish Heart', 'Serenade in Blue' and 'Alfie'. The musical gems in JAZZ & COCKTAILS features Byron fully in command of his artistry, emoting the lyrical and musical expression of each crafty melody with ease. Taking the classic 'Lover Man', Byron does a lyrical twist changing the sentiment to 'Oh My Lover (Where Can You Be)' and swings it into a stylish but bittersweet tale. Be it his sultry interpretation of 'The Waters of March', where he effortlessly weaves back and forth from English to Portuguese, the understated but sassy 'I Told Ya I Love Ya, Now Get Out', the poignant 'Dear Heart' or the quirky 'And Her Tears Flowed Like Wine' it is clear that Byron's approach to these songs is unique, imaginative and passionate. A background singer for Barry Manilow, Byron has also worked with some of the world's most respected artists including: Dionne Warwick, Natalie Cole, Barbra Streisand, Celine Dion, Patti Austin, Joe Cocker, Donna Summer, as well as American Idol winners Fantasia Barrino, Ruben Studdard and Clay Aiken. Byron has also been a featured soloist on three separate occasions with the famed Boston Pops Orchestra under the baton of renowned onductor/composer John Williams. His performance of the Williams composition 'America, The Dream Goes On' garnered strong critical acclaim from the press and public alike. Key to the album's success is Byron's camaraderie with his musicians. Recording most of the selections live with rhythm section, in only one or two takes, brings an extra special element and feeling to this project. 'Recording the vocals live with the band was an amazing way to work. I loved challenging myself that way. Being in sync with four other souls at the same time in the same space is what making music is all about. I'll never record any other way.' Produced by Ron Pedley (Barry Manilow, Kombo, Uncle Festive), JAZZ & COCKTAILS is a stunning result of Byron Motley's singular ability to connect with his collaborators and material at the most heartfelt level. After one listen you will surely agree, that Byron Motley is a name that you will be hearing again and again!