Sunday, February 17, 2008

Artist Influence Central!!!

Hello world. Just wanted to check in with you all and I hope that all is well. A couple of days ago, I said to myself that I wanted to start a blog section that spotlights artists that have influenced me as an artist in my own right. I decided to call it ARTIST INFLUENCE CENTRAL. AIC, will be updated every week and will spotlight an artist that may have been major or minor in the industry, but the impact was tremendous. As such, I decided to start with a wonderful woman in jazz/r&b. She goes by the name of Patrice Rushen. An artist who not only influenced myself, but hip-hop and r&b.

Born September 30,1954, in Los Angeles, CA, Rushen's parents enrolled her in music classes at U.S.C. when she was three. In her teens, she won a solo competition at the 1972 Monterey Jazz Festival. The attention garnered from this earned her a contract with Prestige Records. After recording three albums and becoming an in-demand session player, Rushen signed with Elektra Records in 1978. Forging an engaging jazz/R&B/funk fusion, she regularly hit the R&B charts. Her five albums for the label were Patrice, Pizzazz, Posh, Straight From the Heart, and Now. Some of these sides can be found on Haven't You Heard:The Best of Patrice Rushen. In 1993, Rushen signed with Disney's Hollywood Records. Her first and only release was the excellent Anything but Ordinary, which yielded the inspiring single "My Heart, Your Heart." Hollywood wasn't satisfied with the album and shelved it. Sindrome Records bought the rights to the album and reissued it with the single, and some LP tracks received airplay on R&B and smooth jazz radio stations. Rushen became a member of the jazz collective the Meeting, appearing on several releases. Her busy schedule includes session dates and being the musical director for several different tours and TV specials. 1997's Signature found Rushen returning to her jazz roots for this solid album of instrumentals. In fall 2000, Patrice Rushen appeared as a part of Sisters Being Positively Real, an act on Brown Baby Entertainment Group.

One of my favorite cuts by Patrice Rushen is "Remind Me" found on the "Straight From The Heart" LP. I first heard it back in 1982 and I am still loving it to this day.

As a bonus, attached is a beat that I did in my studio paying homage to Patrice in my own way. I call this song simply, "PATRICE". Check it out!!!

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