. . .entirely pleasing and an extremely worthy addition to this years output of guitar driven smooth jazz. If Time Stood Still is an album with a sumptuous groove and for Norman Johnson demonstrates huge potential. -Denis Poole, Smooth Jazz Therapy
Ojai, CA (PRWEB) July 22, 2010
If Time Stood Still, called "an album with a sumptuous groove. . . with a style in the best traditions of Wes Montgomery and George Benson," is the debut solo release from guitarist Norman Johnson slated to be released August, 10, 2010 on the Pacific Coast Jazz label. From enjoyable rhythmic concepts to the mysterious, sultry melodies that frame Johnson's distinctive sound, this recording integrates the best of contemporary and traditional jazz. With over twenty recordings as a sideman, playing with highly respected musicians (Dave Brubeck, Jerry Bergonzi, Bill Mays, Harvie S., Phil Wilson and Steve Gadd) along with composing and recording music for corporate clients, this release puts Norman Johnson in the spotlight he truly deserves.
If Time Stood Still is well worth the wait with exceptional original songs that incorporate Latin and contemporary jazz grooves and a special arrangement of the Pat Metheny cover tune, "Always and Forever. "There are five different types of guitars used on this recording, a string quartet on the title cut, and a wide range of instruments that include, Tyler VanOstrand (bass), Ken Fischer (piano), Chris Herbert (sax and flute), Steve Davis (trombone), Josh Bruneau (trumpet), including drummers, Bob Forte, Arti Dixson, Anthony Cusano, Chris Lemp drums and percussionists, Martin Obeng, Greg Allan and Eric Galm."The songs and arrangements allow each musician to create interesting parts and improvise," commented Johnson. "I would like people to hear this recording for what I intended it to be, good songs played by fine musicians, accessible to everyone whether you love jazz or not."
"We're excited to have the opportunity to represent the debut CD, If Time Stood Still, from such a talented and experienced artist," said Donna Nichols, founder and president of Pacific Coast Jazz. "This CD is way overdue for Norman who is a high caliber musician and composer." Nichols' label has teamed up with publicist Joy Foster of SV Media and radio promoter Adam Leibovitz at ASL Music Media for access to international media buying and radio promotion.
Pacific Coast Jazz, founded in 2003, is an independent jazz label that also offers artist management services. All PCJ artists are distributed worldwide by MVD Audio/Big Daddy Music. For information on Pacific Coast Jazz, visit: pacificcoastjazz.com. For more information and interviews with Norman Johnson, visit NormanJohnsonGuitar.com or contact Joy Foster at SVMedia (at) svmediarelations (dot) com.
About Norman Johnson:
Born in Kingston, Jamaica, Johnson became interested in playing the guitar in his freshman year of high school after a friend of his lent him a recording of George Benson’s “The Other Side of Abby Road.” His other early influences were Wes Montgomery, Earl Klugh, and r&b groups Rufus (with Chaka Khan) and Earth, Wind and Fire. An east coast resident and always active in the music scene, the Norman Johnson Group won the Hartford Advocate “Best Jazz” in 2000 and in 1998 Norman won the Communicator Award for “Otis in China,” a composition he wrote for Otis Elevator.
Johnson has been the Dean of the Hartford Conservatory of Music and Dance for over nine years and a teacher at the Artist Collective in Hartford, CT, which is an inner city arts school, founded by Jackie McLean’s wife, Dolly. He is also the owner of the recording studio, Manor Recording, and an instructor of recording technology at the award winning magnet school, The Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts. Johnson is presently involved in a project that takes the music from the play “The Real Ambassadors” written by Dave Brubeck and recording those songs with guitar instead of piano with Chris Brubeck (bass and trombone), Dan Brubeck (drums) and his long time vocal partner Dianne Mower.
“The title track “If Time Stood Still” is an interesting song,” Johnson remarked, “because of the simplicity of melody but complexity of the harmony. I choose this as the title track because the title has specific meaning to me. I find that most people spend their time wishing their lives away, waiting for something new to happen and never enjoy what is happening now. This recording is my way of reminding them to enjoy the present.”