Special EFX All-Stars feat Chieli Minucci, Elliott Yamin...and More!
Guitarist, composer, and arranger Chieli Minucci is longtime leader of the Grammy-nominated jazz-fusion group SPECIAL EFX featuring Chieli Minucci, a major force on the jazz and world music scene for over 35 years. Chieli recently released his 35th anniversary CD, “Deep as the Night”. The title track, “Deep as the Night”, enjoyed Billboard Magazine’s 2018 top honors, winning best-song-of-the-year.
Besides writing and performing his own music, Chieli shares his guitar brilliance throughout the entertainment world. He has recorded and performed with many top artists, such as Celine Dion, Lou Reed, Lionel Richie, Jennifer Lopez, Jewel, Mark Anthony, Michael Bolton, Eartha Kitt, Eddie Fisher, Anastasia, as well as jazz artists Kirk Whalum, Jeff Lorber, Norman Brown, Bernie Williams, Marion Meadows, Lao Tizer, Mindi Abair, Rick Braun, Gerald Veasley, Omar Hakim, and many others. Although renowned in the jazz and pop world, Chieli is also a gifted television and film composer. He has won 3 Emmy Awards and been nominated 10 times for his eclectic compositional work. His music can also be heard on the soundtracks of the films Bowfinger, Legally Blonde, Panic, and others. Chieli's original scoring work can be heard in live stage productions of Peter Pan, Dora the Explorer, Thomas the Tank Engine, and others.
American Idol star, vocalist Elliott Yamin had no vocal training and was 90 percent deaf in his right ear, yet he vaulted to stardom after becoming a third-place finalist on American Idol. ELLIOT YAMIN's style is perfect for a smooth jazz festival -- soulful with a jazz/R & B style. His debut album made it to #1 on the Billboard Charts.. Yamin was featured in a nationwide American Idol Tour performing live in front of half a million fans. Elliott launched his recording career following his appearance on American Idol as one of the top three finalists. His highly anticipated album, Elliott Yamin, debuted at Number 3 on the Billboard album chart and was the highest-debuting album by an independent artist in Sound Scan history. The self-titled disc achieved gold status in the U.S. and Japan, yielding the platinum hit, “Wait for You.” Hailed as one of the best male vocalists, Elliott would go on to release three more albums
Saxophonist Eric Marienthal started his professional career in 1980 with famed New Orleans trumpeter Al Hirt. After returning to Los Angeles, Eric became a member of the Chick Corea Elektric Band. He recorded six albums with that band and two of them won Grammy Awards. Six of the songs that Marienthal has recorded have made it to the top 10 of the National Contemporary Jazz Radio Charts and two have made it to No. 1. His Oasis album hit the top 5 on the Billboard Contemporary Jazz Chart. Shortly after that, he was voted one of the year's "Favorite Alto Sax Players" in Jazziz magazine's Readers' Poll. Marienthal has also written instructional books, including Comprehensive Jazz Studies & Exercises, The Ultimate Jazz Play Along, and The Music of Eric Marienthal and instructional videos, including Play Sax From Day One, Modern Sax and Tricks of the Trade.
Karen Briggs, also known as the "Lady in Red", is an American violinist. Born in Manhattan to a family of musicians, Briggs took up the violin at age 12 and committed to playing professionally at age 15. Briggs joined the Virginia Symphony Orchestra while still in college, but grew discontented with performing classical music and left the orchestra after four years. Since then, she has performed predominantly in the jazz and contemporary instrumental genres. Best known for spending thirteen years on tour with contemporary instrumental musician Yanni, Briggs received the "Lady in Red" moniker while featuring as a soloist on Yanni's Live at the Acropolis tour. After parting with Yanni in 2004, she toured with other groups including the short-lived jazz fusion group Vertú. Briggs has performed at such locations as Carnegie Hall and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and has performed or collaborated with Dave Grusin, Diana Ross, the Wu Tang Clan, En Vogue, and Chaka Khan.
Keyboardist Lao Tizer is one of today’s rising stars of the world-fusion genre. Tizer’s original music has spurred comparisons of a modern twist to the 1970s and early 1980s heyday of jazz fusion, when trailblazing ensembles like Return To Forever, Mahavishnu Orchestra and Weather Report set the aesthetic standard. Lao’s music has a multi-genre, multi-national appeal and his group, The Lao Tizer Band, has toured the USA and the world while being nominated “Jazz Group of the Year”! Their new 2018 CD/DVD combo release, Songs From The Swinghouse has received acclaim across the industry while debuting near the top of the Billboard Jazz Album Chart!
Known for his solid & classic "no treble" approach to playing, Jerry Brooks has been the longtime bassist for Special EFX for over 25 years. His credits include almost all the Special EFX and Chieli Minucci CDs, as well as tops artists such as Alicia Keys, Will Downing, D'Angelo, Lenny White, Bobby Lyle, Kim Waters, Omar Hakim, Chuck Loeb, as well as Destiny's Child.
Joel Rosenblatt is a world-renowned drummer and producer. He has performed and recorded with such greats as: Spyro Gyra, Special EFX, Lee Ritenour, Freddy Jackson, Robben Ford, Larry Carlton. Eileen Ivers, Michel Camilo, Chick Corea, Steps Ahead, Paquito d Rivera, Manhattan Transfer, Randy Brecker, Ken Navarro, Bill Evans and many more. Having toured the world many times over, Joel brings an international musical awareness to the music. Currently the owner and main engineer at world class CliffSound Productions, Joel is also actively involved in producing and cultivating new artists.
The Kent Stage
175 East Main
Kent, OH, 44240