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Simple Truth

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Album Review

Recorded in Bonn, Germany, Jeff Kashiwa's second release for the Native Language label, Simple Truth, documents ten fresh songs written by Kashiwa and Dave Kochanski. On Simple Truth, the highly popular smooth jazz saxophonist is joined by members of his Coastal Access band and also features fellow ex-Rippington bandmate Steve Reid. Here, Kashiwa illustrates his highly acclaimed lyrical technique of playing and collaborates with the award-winning producer Chuck Loeb, using smooth jazz, traditional jazz, and funky grooves. The vast experience of Loeb is readily apparent on such great songs as "3-Day Weekend" a bright, brassy, song with a soulful blues groove; "Mediterranean Nights"; the solemn "A Quiet Goodbye"; and "The Good Life." Loeb's creative arrangements of "Simple Truth" and "Thanks to You" allow Jeff Kashiwa to showcase his sensitive and soft sides, as well as his wonderfully melodic interpretations for romantic-natured listeners. With Simple Truth, Loeb has laid a strong foundation for Jeff Kashiwa to deepen his stake in smooth jazz territory and to reign among the smooth jazz elite. Its incredible improvisations and joyous jams are highlights that push this CD past that of his previous release, Another Door Opens.


Born: Seattle, WA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s

One of the most successful smooth jazz saxophonists, Jeff Kashiwa made his name as a member of the popular group the Rippingtons. Starting out on the clarinet at age ten, it would be two years before the Seattle-born musician switched to saxophone. Influenced early on by such smooth jazz progenitors as Chuck Mangione and Spyro Gyra, Kashiwa eventually moved to Boston to attend Berklee College and developed an interest in straight-ahead jazz -- a skill that often colors his live performances. His...
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Simple Truth, Jeff Kashiwa
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