Jazz Funk Soul‘s new and fourth recording, Forecast, (Shanachie Entertainment, August 5, 2022) will once again show off their magnetic chemistry and inspired performances.
At the core of the trio’s allure is their genuine camaraderie, which is anchored by each member’s passion to create. “All of us love music, especially Jazz, not to mention Funk and Soul!” exclaims Lorber. Our unique talents compliment each other. Paul is well known as an ace session player and one of the finest rhythm guitarists in the world, and Everette is a force of nature with the saxophone. I enjoy comping behind and supporting these guys, and also tossing in some of my blues and be-bop licks when I solo.” Harp says, “The respect I have for Jeff and Paul is immense. Their accomplishments would be enough for 10 musician’s lifetimes.” Jackson adds, “JFS is a threefold convergence of hard work, experience over time, and the blessing of the Lord. Jeff and Everette are arguably two of the best soloists with whom I’ve ever worked.”
The original incarnation of Jazz Funk Soul commenced in 2014. Everette Harp, Jeff Lorber and Chuck Loeb formed the band with the mission of recreating on record the spontaneity and explosive chemistry of their live shows. In 2017, the Jazz world was shook by the untimely passing of Chuck Loeb. “Chuck was an important part of the start of JFS. He was certainly the JAZZ in Jazz Funk Soul,” reflects Everette. “The spirit and joy he brought into his play was infectious. Each time we played together I felt like I had to bring it! There were no coasting nights. He’d smoke you if you didn’t bring it. He was incredible and set a wonderful precedent for us to continue.” Lorber adds, “I feel very lucky to have had the chance to know and collaborate with Chuck. He was a really sweet guy who was fun to hang out with. As a musician, he had prodigious talent as a jazz guitarist, improviser, composer and producer. I think everyone who got to know Chuck really misses him. Jackson shares, “I was able to tour with Chuck in a guitar trio (along with Chieli Minucci). I used to love it when it was his turn to play one of his songs. The chance to “duel” with Chuck and learn from him was an experience that I will never forget. Chuck is a world-class musician, composer and producer and he’s even nicer than he is talented. I would not have joined JFS if I did not feel I could honor his legacy. I hope I am making him proud.” In a tasteful and fitting way Jazz Funk Soul pays homage to Chuck on Forecast with the memorable “CLS (for Chuck Samuel Loeb).”
When three visionaries unite, there is bound to be forward momentum. Paul Jackson Jr. shares, “One of my longtime hobbies is lake fishing. You must cast your line out ‘forward’ into the water if you’re gonna catch anything. For me, Forecast is JFS casting our musical net into the world to “catch” music listeners everywhere. And, I think we have the right “bait” for the job!!!” Forecast started to take shape just as the pandemic hit and the world as we knew it changed. “It was a little bit weird, but being stuck at home made really focusing on this project a lot easier,” recalls Lorber. “There were a lot fewer distractions, no decompressing from the treadmill of coming back from the road and changing gears to working in the studio.” A lot of time, love and nurturing went into creating the music. Harp shares the vision for the album’s title stating, “Forecast alludes to the continuing progress of the group in defining its sound, direction, and place in the genre as it exists today. We also want to force the musical dialogue in the direction of our musical forefathers where the history of jazz still plays an integral part of the future of contemporary jazz. As much as we are physically able to, we want to get out there and share what knowledge we have with younger musicians and pass it on.”
“The name Jazz Funk Soul screams diversity,” declares Everette Harp. “I think the fact that we’ve each been studio musicians and have played on many styles of records, allows our music to have a freedom of expression that can go from high energy to jazzy, funky, bluesy, soulful and emotional. I hope listeners feel this and enjoy the journey.” You’ve got your invitation. Take the journey – as the Forecast assures the coast is clear and all is looking and sounding great!
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