Ray Brown Jr., the son of legendary jazz performers Ray Brown and Ella Fitzgerald, is being joined by some of his friends and other artists he has admired to create a truly unique album put out by SRI Jazz with veteran producer Shelly Liebowitz at the helm. All-star guests from the CD have also signed the "Green Piano" used in making the CD, which will then be sold at auction, the proceeds of which will help rebuild eco-friendly homes to musicians affected by Hurricane Katrina.
Los Angeles, CA March 6, 2008 -- SRI Jazz announces the making of Ray Brown Jr.'s next CD, an all-star duets album entitled "Family and Friends". Ray will be joined by some of his friends and other artists he has admired to create a truly unique album. With veteran producer, Shelly Liebowitz at the helm, the line-up includes Dr. John, Dionne Warwick, Jane Monheit, James Moody, Freda Payne, Melba Moore, David "Fathead" Newman, Sophie B. Hawkins, Paul Williams, Maria Muldaur, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Terry Gibbs and others.
This CD will include a very special version of "How High The Moon". It will be a duet of Ray with both his mother and father (Ella Fitzgerald and Ray Brown). "We know this will be a magical moment when Ray sings with his parents. In addition to that amazing duet, we are recording a duet of Ray and his daughter Haylee performing Ella's first hit, ‘Tisket-A-Tasket’. I am thrilled and excited to sign Haylee to her first contract and produce her first session", said Liebowitz.
Shelly Liebowitz and SRI Jazz are lending their efforts to the organizations Global Green and Active Music by having the all-star guests from this CD sign the "Green Piano". The piano has been consigned for Liebowitz's use and shipped to the recording studio. The Green Piano, which is an environmentally friendly piano, was created exclusively by Baldwin to raise awareness of going green. The piano will be sold at auction and the proceeds will help rebuild eco-friendly homes which will go to musicians affected by Hurricane Katrina. These signatures will be added to the one from famed New Orleans native, and Rock And Roll Hall of Fame artist, Fats Domino.
The first guest to sign the piano in the studio is legendary New Orleans performer Dr. John who placed his signature on the Green Piano during his duet session with Ray Brown Jr. on March 3rd.
"This album marks a first in many ways. Original, unconventional arrangements and song choices matched with not only incredible vocalists but also legendary musicians make this CD truly special. When you add that to the talent of Ray Brown Jr. and the legacy of his family, the results are just magical. The first duet by Dr. John has given us a glimpse of just how special this CD will be," says Liebowitz.
Ray Brown Jr., the son of legendary jazz performers Ray Brown and Ella Fitzgerald, has been making special appearances along with periodic performances in celebration of Ella's 90th birthday. His energies have been consumed within the last year with memories and remembrances plus touring to promote his current release. Most recently Ray has appeared in the BBC documentary, "First Lady of Song", about his mother. This documentary was so popular it has aired several times in only a few months.
Walking into the studio to work with family and friends seemed like the logical next step to Liebowitz and a foreboding challenge to Brown. But Brown is looking forward to it, "Yeah, I'm a tad bit nervous. But it will be great fun and very educational", said Brown.
Recently Brown has performed shows to repeated standing ovations. His vocal stylings have been compared to Peabo Bryson or Al Jarreau, and his arrangements have been described as soulful and versatile.
The piano will be auctioned off on E Bay with Auctioncause. The proceeds of the piano auction will benefit Global Green USA's climate change initiatives, including the green rebuilding of New Orleans. Global Green is leading efforts to help rebuild a green New Orleans as a model for rebuilding sustainable cities around the world, including it's Holy Cross Project, the first sustainable affordable housing community in the Lower Ninth Ward.
Global Green USA, the American arm of President Gorbachev's Green Cross International, was founded in 1993 to foster a global value shift toward a sustainable and secure future. For more than a decade, Global Green has been a national leader in advocating for smart solutions to global warming including green building for affordable housing, schools and communities. Global Green USA has influenced more than $20 billion dollars for green building projects and educates hundreds of millions of people about climate solutions through its campaigns and initiatives. To learn more visit www.globalgreen.org.
ActiveMusic A 501c3 production and media event company dedicated to raising funds and awareness for effective grass root non-profit organizations and social causes that support environmental, health, social justice, and educational programs. ActiveMusic’s mission: "Accelerating Social Change through the Power of Music and Media." ActiveMusic provides services, contacts, outreach, resources, consultation and expertise producing benefit concerts and event fundraisers. To learn more visit www.activemusic.org.
For additional information visit www.srirecords.com