Esteemed Jazz Educator, Reviewer, and Music Fan, Ronald Jackson, wrote a great review for Kissed By The Sun for TheSmoothJazzRide website, and I took the liberty of condensing some of his wonderful comments below for space consideration. Check out his complete site and read the very well written, full review (with even more cool comments and personnel details) at http://www.thesmoothjazzride.com/site/gabriel-mark-hasselbach-kissed-sun/
"The first notes of the opening track “King James” .….indicate that this is going to be one cool party. It is, and the doors are open for all to attend. What a full, energetic project. His trumpet leading the way with pure, solid clarity and force, Hasselbach reaches into the engine of contemporary jazz with (co-writer) Jeff Lorber and adds a few more cylinders to ensure that this album not only rides but soars effortlessly through this journey.
This album has everything from good solid funk .. to a cool, polished straight-ahead number. Ah, the sweetness of jazz when you have the right personnel steering the vehicle. This is “Nobody Goes Anywhere Until This Vibe Stops” music. True aficionados of the genre will be held happily captive.
The snappy and tasteful title track keeps the party in high gear …..and the upbeat “No One Like You” ends the party with a bang. Hasselbach’s Kissed By the Sun brings variety and depth, real depth, to the genre and is truly a must-hear. With Lorber, it is one great collaboration and a demonstration of what true talent can create." –Ronald Jackson
Had a long day prepping charts for my upcoming Vancouver shows.....
Gabriel Mark Hasselbach - Kissed By The SunYou might think that Gabriel Mark Hasselbach might have been a bit nervous recording a follow-up CD to his 2011 Canadian Smoothies award winning project Told Ya So. But that’s hardly the case. And though his previous CD is a hard act to follow, the west coast trumpeter is literally hotter than ever with his new release Kissed By The Sun. You don't need to go any further than the CD case itself to realize that notion, as Hasselbach's lineup of extraordinary artists reads like a musical dream team. Here he brings together names that are in no way unfamiliar to the smooth music lover, including bassist Brian Bromberg, Chuck Loeb, fellow ‘Canucks’ Rob Tardik and Walle Larson, saxophonist Rock Hendricks of Paul Hardcastle's Jazzmasters outfit, and keyboardist and production wizard Jeff Lorber. Kissed By The Sun is almost entirely written and produced by Hasselbach and Lorber with sessions recorded in Vancouver, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Toronto and Winnipeg and could go down as Hasselbach's most inspiring and creative collaborative offering yet. While not to ignore any of his previous efforts that have earned Hasselbach great respect, accolades and honours, Kissed By The Sun totally dismisses any notion that a horn extraordinaire like Hasselbach doesn't know how to get his groove on. The album is not only funk infused, but also rich and heavy in rhythmic melodies and tempos, which makes this latest project both pleasing and catchy throughout the entire ride. The first single Starpixie takes the album right out of the gates with its mesmerizing sound and beat, accented by Hasselbach's rich textured horn jabs and Lorber's stylish and playful keyboarding. The two are just as brilliant in their musical pairing on No One Like You, yet another hot up-tempo groove that doesn't cool down for an instant or even one single note. While tunes like King James and Lock It Up offer heavy doses of 'funk-itude', Hasselbach, Loeb and Bromberg are an awesome trio on Funk In Deep Freeze, a calmly smooth and bluesy track with a feel and sound of the traditional jazz era. Kissed By The Sun is an outstanding collaborative mix of some of the finest instrumentalists who accent, compliment and meld their talents beautifully with those of Hasselbach, who could easily be enjoying his finest musical moment to date. If you think the summer of 2012 has been a scorcher at times already, slide a copy of Kissed By The Sun into your CD tray and get set for an extreme heat alert!Reviewed by Stu Berketo
Hey Jazz Lovers,
July 4 Smoothjazz Under The Stars w/Jeff Lorber @ Alexis Park Resort Las Vegas, NV Tickets and packages (702) 796-3300 / www.alexispark.com
July 7 'Brass and Ivory' w/Jeff Lorber & Vernon Barbary @ Loews Ventana, Tucson, AZ (520) 903-1265
Hey Jazz Lovers,