Photo by Timothy Eberly on Unsplash

Smooth Jazz Piks Dec 13th

An Active Jazz Experience

Recently, I did a personal assessment and came to the realization of how often I was not actively involved in my jazz experience.  What do I mean?  Over the last few months, I’ve had the pleasure of seeing and speaking with some great jazz artists who are more than holding their own in the Smooth Jazz World.  After seeing their performance, I wanted to hear more of their music.

It then dawned on me and I had to reflect on my early professional military education when we were being prepared to become young supervisors.  The lessons circled around active and passive interactions – hearing versus listening and looking versus seeing.  I hear a ton of Smooth Jazz in my 30-minute commute to and from work and often will leave notes in my phone of artists and songs and I need to go back and check out when I get a little “free” time.  Often this means throwing on some tunes while cooking or doing yard work, but every once and awhile I get to pour an adult beverage, sit in my home office and listen to the music.

Over the last two months, I’ve taken the time to listen to the work of a young man I got to see for the first time at this year’s Gulf Coast Summer Fest in Pensacola, FL.  Although he has performed at other festivals I’ve attended, this time I wasn’t simply looking at an artist, I was seeing his performance.  After his set, my wife and I went and spoke to him briefly and I decided I needed to go back and listen to more of his music.  It’s amazing what you discover when you stop and smell the roses.  He is an artist with a great repertoire of Smooth Jazz selections!!!

This week I got a text from him, keyboardist Nathan Mitchell informed me of his blessing to place #13 on the Smooth Jazz Top 30 Best of 2019 for his Swing City track featuring Jazmin Ghent.  Swing City is on his recent collection of 10 tracks on Soulmate.  The collection also includes the performance of other Smooth Jazz stars like Gerald Albright, James K. Lloyd, Marion Meadows, and vocalist Carmen Harrell.  Take a 45-minute break and listen.  Even more importantly, buy the collection.  If it isn’t already, it will become one of your favorites, but more than likely, it already is since he is #13.

Another young man who has taken Smooth Jazz by storm is not only an artist but produces and arranges for so many artists, I don’t know when he sleeps.  He not only made the Smooth Jazz Top 30 Best of 2019 once but did it twice in the #16 spot with Just Dance, accompanied by Dave Koz and at #26 with Shuffle featuring Darren Rahl.  His Double Vision project includes a few of the Who’s Who of Smooth Jazz, including Marcus Anderson, Jeff Lorber, and Julian Vaughn.  If you have seen Adam Hawley live you can better understand how he stays so busy…this young man is high energy.  Luckily, the Panhandle has the opportunity to see him live in Fort Walton Beach, FL on January 11th at the Ft Walton Beach Civic Auditorium.  See our events page for more details.

Check back next week as we highlight our local Smooth Jazz artists who are helping to make #FloridaJazzCentral.  A huge thank you to Patron Sponsor for the Dee Lucas Smooth Jazz Holiday Luncheon, Southern Legal.


Jill W. Crew ◆ Attorney

238 Miracle Strip Pkwy SW, Ft Walton Beach, FL 32548

(850) 244-0400 | Jill@Southern.Legal



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