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David Benoit & Russ Freeman

One of the more popular performers in the idiom somewhat inaccurately called "contemporary jazz," David Benoit has mostly performed light melodic background music, what critic Alex Henderson has dubbed "new age with a beat." Benoit has done a few fine jazz projects (including a tribute to Bill Evans and a collaboration with Emily Remler) but most of his output for GRP has clearly been aimed at the charts. He studied composition and piano at El Camino College and, in 1975, played on the soundtrack of the film Nashville. After recording with Alphonse Mouzon and accompanying singer Gloria Lynne, he was signed to the AVI label when he was 24, recording sets that paved the way for his later output. In 1986, Benoit signed as a solo artist with GRP, a relationship that would last until 2003. Albums like 1989's Waiting for Spring and 1999's Professional Dreamer showcase his smooth, lyrical style, while projects like his 2000 tribute to Vince Guaraldi's Peanuts scores, Here's to You, Charlie Brown!: 50 Great Years!, demonstrate where his own tastes lie. A decade after their first joint venture, Benoit and Russ Freeman collaborated on Benoit/Freeman Project 2, released by the Concord-associated label Peak in 2004. For 2005's Orchestral Works he was joined by the Czech National Symphony Orchestra and members of the Asia America Symphony Orchestra. He released two studio albums including Full Circle in 2006 and Standards, which appeared later that same year. In 2008, Benoit paid tribute to some of his musical idols with the album Heroes. The album saw him covering songs by Elton John, the Beatles, Dave Brubeck, and others. Two years later, Benoit delivered the Clark Germain-produced electronica-inflected album Earthglow, and in 2012, he returned with Conversation, which featured the classical trio-meets-jazz-trio title track taken from his "Music for Two Trios" suite.

In 2014, Benoit contributed to former Ambrosia guitarist David Pack's Napa Crossroads set with Alan Parsons, Ray Manzarek, Larry Carlton, Mindi Abair, and others.

Benoit shifted focus on his next outing. Deciding to record an all-originals vocal album, he collaborated with lyricists Lorraine Feather, Mark Winkler, and Spencer Day. Released in the summer of 2015, 2 in Love featured Grammy-nominated jazz vocalist Jane Monheit. ~ Scott Yanow
full bio

Comments

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Ah, the sweet soothing sound smoooooth jazz
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johnmargie6
Candy for my ears...
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terrytrice57
David Benoit defines his own style beautifully!
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angelareingo u d
Sweet for soul
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Love this
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Benoit's achievements never mentioned his AVI days when he became very popular in Asia, particularly the Philippines, where his albums "Heavier than Yesterday", "Can You Imagine", and "Stages" became almost the national anthem of the contemporary jazz there.
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When two great artists coming together, this is music you get, an master piece, so well put together, an instant classic, let there be no doubt
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Kpatriciapri c e -- that's how u do it!!! Love cruising on the open road, listening to smooth/cool jazz...
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Been following since the beginning. I saw them live recently. The only thing is that it time for some type of next level sound. They are very much together, but go ahead man!!!
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Too much negativity on this great artist/music i a n seems most don't appreciate "Good" music...
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rs.persei
love his music as well....
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Love this album!!!
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Driving home after work 11:30p sunroof open windows down music loud no traffic. Relax mode
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For walking along beach barefoot drinking Starbucks Bottled Michael. YES!!!
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johnmargie6
Candy for my ears!
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One of my top 10 SJ favorites.
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s10bob
Hated him ever since I heard him
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These two are both virtuoso in their individual styles. GREAT!!!
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Benoit and Freeman are absolutely fabulous!!!!
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Russ freeman of the ripping tons and Dave Benoit classy what else listen to that guitar speaks to u
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I began listening to David Benoit in the early 90's. Coming from a music background, I'm always totally amazed at the way he makes a piano come to life! He creates visual music that's timeless. He is definitely one of my favorite musicians.
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wm_byrd
It combines the melodic and jazzy sounds in such a beautiful way. I appreciate David Benoit and have for so many years. I saw him live in Santa Rosa back in the late '80s.
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Dam good job ilnformative .
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In music you can listen to music as a mood fits you. In this Pandora radio project, even mixing things as diverse as Miles, Ozzy, Planet P, Lang Lang, Yo Yo, Johhny Cash, Enya, etc. As this list goes on and on, the generic radio station is a thing of the past. Maybe the death metal and the satanic stuff is a bit much, but it's a free world. Now Chet Baker, please sing that song you do on the Turner Movies station, and let's relax. Benoit-Freem a n is the bomb, and so is Green Day's 21 guns.
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pchandler229
Fire / Ice - The Jazz Police do not want you listening to Their Music. To them, if it's not Coltrane, it ain't music. Real jazz must be amelodic, arhythmic, and aharmonic; in short, the sound of a train wreck in slow motion. Those who say any particular genre of music is 'bad' are my pet peeve. How dare they. Who cares if it's melodic, it has a beat, and it's played on the radio? I say: To each his own, and let the Jazz Police forever expand their waistlines in the donut shop of 'mainstream'
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Critics of the smooth jazz genre really miss the point.Jazz has always been a creole art form that pulled from many other styles that were a part of that point in time.That's not evil.Neither is David Benoit nor Russ Freeman.It's good music.I can appreciate these gentleman just as much as I appreciate Miles...or Herbie...or Jaco.
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snazzzy jazz
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debosweetie5 3 3 6
is that Phil Perry singing the lead?
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I really like this, it's so smooth and easyto listen to.
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Curiously, a listener who knew nothing about David Benoit and read Scott Yanow's brief bio would have no idea what instrument Benoit plays. Is he a guitarist or pianist? Neither word (nor "guitar" or "piano") shows up in Yanow's piece, and he gives no clue. Collaboratio n s with Bill Evans and Emily Remler suggest both directions. Or is he a composer only? Great music, but the liner notes need work!
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lay back and relax...so nice after a busy day.......
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midlandng
My first jazz album was this one. Now I don't listen to anything else!!
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midlandng
The first jazz album I ever bought was part 1. That started me into my jazz journey
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Vocal by Phil Perry, WOW!!!!! On Benoit-Freem a n Project 1994.
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PJB: David Benoit is probably on the list of being a favorite

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