(MAPLEWOOD, NJ) -- Spring fever is at its peak at the historic Woodland Mansion in Maplewood, NJ on Saturday, April 23rd. Smooth Vocals R&B with Maysa Leak (Deep Waters) Grammy Nominee. All that jazz with classical flutist turned Jazz flutist Alexander Zonjic (multiple winner Detroit Music Awards) and funk provided by the incomparable keys of James Lloyd from Pieces of a Dream, Kris Kurzawa (Guitar), Jeff Candy (Drums), and Mike Harrington (Bass). The event starts at 8:00pm and is presented by Smooth Jazz NJ and the Maplewood Division of Arts & Culture at the Woodland in Maplewood.
Maysa Leak - Maysa, the former backup singer in Stevie Wonder’s female group Wonderlove, quickly made the leap to lead singer in the British mega group Incognito. Now with 14 highly charted solo albums, this Grammy Nominee, and Soul Train “CENTRIC” award winner will release her 2022 “Music for Soul” album this summer. Maysa, who has performed for Machelle Obama, has distinguished herself as a vocalist in the Jazz and R&B worlds.
James Lloyd - Master keyboardist James Lloyd is founder, and current member of the internationally acclaimed Contemporary Jazz and R&B super group Pieces of a Dream. James has performed and co-produced 20 albums with the group on Electra and Shanachie labels. He currently has released his first solo album on the Schanachie label entitled “Here We Go”. James transforms his “George Duke- like” energy into a unique dynamic of his own, sure to be one of many highlights in the show.
Alexander Zonjic - Discovered by Bob James, leader of the group Fourplay, Alexander Zonjic has released 12 solo albums, served as morning drive host for the long time Smooth Jazz station WVMV Detroit, and currently hosts a half hour TV show that airs Sundays at 10PM on WADL TV-38. His latest 2020 release “Playing It Forward” enjoyed its first single “Motor City Sway”, an infectious R&B groove, was the most added on the Billboard charts. The album was produced by 2019 Grammy winner Jeff Lorber.
You can meet and greet Maysa, James, and Alexander, and enjoy a glass of wine at the JESPY House wine bar after the show in the upstairs Woodland Parlor. The South Orange-based nonprofit JESPY House, which supports adults with Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities, will be providing a wine bar in the second floor Parlor, where the meet and greet and merchandise sales will also take place. Purchase your open wine bar ticket where 90% of the purchase price goes directly to JESPY to support their amazing work.
After decades of presenting Smooth Jazz in New York either as a Producer for NY based Marquee Concerts, or as a Promotor, the founder of the CD101.9 Smooth Cruise is bringing live “Smooth Jazz” to New Jersey.
Rich Engel a New Jersey resident has for decades, been involved with Smooth Jazz in NY with a particular concentration on the “Smooth Cruise” a two-hour music sailing with a view of the New York City skyline.
With the advent of Covid 19, the Smooth Cruise ended operations after the summer of 2019. Recognizing that approximately half of the passengers on the Smooth Cruise New York were making the trip from N.J. to see the top names in Adult Contemporary Jazz, it seemed apparent that a void existed.
With venues to few and far between, that present live nationally recognized Smooth Jazz artists, the creation of Smooth Jazz New Jersey now exists. The mission is to bring live adult contemporary music to various venues throughout the state. Venues Interested in having Smooth Jazz New Jersey come to you should contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org