It’s been a long minute since I’ve sat down to provide a little insight into the Destin Smooth Jazz journey. I momentarily lost sight of the real reason for doing what we do. We’re here to let as many people as possible know about the great stars and rising stars of smooth jazz. I confess I have a special place for the rising stars of Smooth Jazz, especially our local jazz heroes.
Today, I must highlight a musician who has really assisted with the birth and survival of DSJ. Keyboardist, composer, musical instructor, father, friend, and a gentle giant in Smooth Jazz, Mr. Gino Rosaria. Gino performed in seven of the eight shows we hosted over the last few years. Not only has he played, but last year also he did the sound, lights and performed for the three shows we held in Ft Walton Beach during the lull of the pandemic.
Gino kicked off 2022 with a new single Ride Along featuring saxophonist Judah Sealy. The track is appropriately titled as Gino does not disappoint on the keys and Judah shines through on the sax. Adam Hawley teamed up with Gino in composing this new track. You really must check out this cut and tell us what you think. I know I have another great track to add to my library. Another win for Gino, Judah, and Adam.
It’s also amazing how things work out in life. Bassist Chris Snowden has been our musical director for seven of the eight shows we hosted thus far. Chris introduced me to Gino, who I unknowingly saw a few times in a now-closed local jazz club, Beale Street Bottle Club, and yes, Gino left everyone in awe back then too.
Fast forward to 2018-19 and I saw Adam at a live event and was able to contact him and bam, he agreed to do a show with us in January 2020. This was a day we had one of the worst storms for January. Die-hard jazz fans still braved the weather and supported the event. Later that year I was vising my wife’s family in Rochester, NY and my brother-in-law, bassist Tyrone Coley, told me about saxophonist Judah Sealy and how much he admired this sax man. I reached out to Judah after returning to Florida to see if his tour schedule was bringing him down south. We haven’t hooked up yet, but he remains on our wish list for a live performance
So, to sum it all up, Jay Smooth introduced me to Chris Snowden. Chris introduced me to Gino. Chris and Gino have done 90% of our shows and did or January Jazz show with Adam. And I’ll be damn, Adam Hawley is playing bass on Ride Along by Gino Rosaria. You really need to check this out.