Triple S: A Smooth Singer-Songwriter

New Cd I Don’t Do Lazy Like That coming very soon…..which is

Story ♪ Lyrics ♫ Jazz Chord Palette ♪ Intimate ♫ Rhythmic ♪ Thoughtful ♫ Swing ♪ Reflective

My new CD, I Don’t Do Lazy Like That, is about to drop…Great news! And as this is about to happen, I have thought about my branding and radio marketing campaign that is about to unfold. I have heard that one can “talk” or “reflect” one’s creativity away; however, in focusing my campaign it seems opportune to re-think how to describe my music. I have always thought my music rooted in Smooth Jazz and Adult Contemporary (AC)….

Art is not a static practice; neither is music. As musical genres migrate, adapt and shift, novel subgenres and performances may emerge. Alongside the inevitability of crossing/incorporating musical boundaries in the pursuit of the novel, there is the—often simultaneous—shoring up of boundaries/definitions that constitute a genre. Within jazz, for example, there are many, many subgenres, including Bebop, Bossa Nova, Chamber Jazz, Cool, Dixieland, Free form and Avant-Garde, Gospel jazz Hard Bop, Jazz rap, Jazz Hip Hop, Jazz rock, Jazz in Classical Composition, Modal, Ragtime, Vocal jazz, Swing—and my favourite, Smooth Jazz (…and many more, see Tanner and Megill, 2013 for example). In the Smooth Jazz Singer category, I might include Anita Baker, Bobby McFerrin, Corinne Bailey Rae and Norah Jones. Canadians seem well represented here with Coco Love Alcorn, Diana Krall, Matt Dusk and Michael Bublé to name but a few. The Singer-Songwriter music tradition, clearly began with songwriters who wrote and performed their own songs, typically accompanying themselves on guitar. This musical tradition then, is also a genre which may touch upon Celtic, Folk, Folk Pop, Folk-Rock, Roots and may claim artists like Bob Dylan, The Chieftains, Ed Sheeran, James Taylor, Joni Mitchell, Simon & Garfunkel, Tracy Chapman.  Indeed, Canadians are well-represented here as well, including Amelia Curran, Bruce Cockburn, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Connie Kaldor, David Myles, Jay Semko, Jeffery Straker, Leonard Cohen, Martha and Rufus Wainwright, Poor Nameless Boy, Stan Rogers, Tom Cochrane.

My music lies in between these two:
from Smooth Jazz, I love the generous chord palette, the grooves, the laid-back rhythms, the melodic shifts, improvisation
from the Singer-Songwriter tradition, I love the emphasis on narrative, the story, the intimacy, the importance of lyric, the reflective narrative themes, the audience connectedness

This reflection has been good for me; it feels like I have discerning my own Musical Mission Statement. A Statement that both describes and informs my songwriting. My CD, I Don’t Do Lazy Like That certainly includes various story songs… stay tuned. What is your musical mission statement?

Tanner, Paul & Megill, David (2013). Jazz: twelfth edition. Toronto: McGraw Hill (pp. 413).