[JPL] RE: Kenny G on KKJZ w/content

Doug Crane dcrane at comcast.net
Sun Apr 3 21:56:37 EDT 2011

Lest anybody be interested, the playlist for Mr. G's first KKJZ show has 
been posted.  You can find it here:


I guess it's pretty much what one would have expected: a focus on pretty 
safe fare, one or two tunes from the 50's and 60's and the rest from the 
70's and beyond.  Not sure that I'd classify John Legend or Lawson 
Rollins as fitting a jazz format.  I dare say my listeners would go 
apoplectic if I ever played Legend's "Ordinary People".  But by playing 
it perhaps he was informing listeners that both of them will be 
performing at the New Orleans Jazz Fest.

Ricky, as for Ferrante & Teicher, their pre-1960 recordings were great 
early stereo demo records.  They're more akin to Esquivel and Martin 
Denny, perhaps with a little Spike Jones and Raymond Scott thrown in for 
good measure.  Lots of "prepared" piano effects paying homage to John 
Cage.  They abandoned all of that once they signed with United Artists 
around 1960 recording only pretty tame covers of Exodus, Midnight Cowboy 
and the like.  And of course the latter was far more popular with the 
general public.

Doug Crane
dcrane at comcast.net
KUVO Denver 89.3FM

On 4/3/2011 3:42 PM, onthebeach at aol.com wrote:
> **** Follow us at twitter.com/jazzweek ****
> Kenny G has always acknowledged Grover Washington Jr as a major influence.  i think he wanted to be Grover. irrespective of how one feels about him,
> one of the reasons Kenny G has enjoyed such success is:
> 1) as jae pointed out, his structure is simple and easy enough for the masses;  and those long notes are real crowd-pleasers
> 2) he's consciously trying to reach people;
> 3) he had strong management, (dennis turner, former co-manager of george benson, among others)who worked really hard to lift him up to a point where his record label had to really kick in
> 4) in Arista he had Don Ienner&  Clive Davis get behind him, after management raised him up ( a series of TV appearances )
> His first couple of albums were 80% vocal, 20% instrumental.  Arista was a Word of Mouth Marketing client, and i compiled a 4 song instrumental EP that started Kenny's rise among contemporary jazz shows (this was before the Smooth Jazz format formally existed).  Dennis Turner did a great job tenaciously booking Kenny onto TV, with sales spikes following every appearance.  Once Donny Ienner
> (as good a promotion man as there is) was on board, the rest as they say, was history.
> Think Ferrante&  Teicher (dont know who they are? Google them to discover a little about pop instrumental history).  I believe Kenny always has thought of himself as a pop or RnB artist.
> As for KKJZ?  Lawrence Tanter ( the "mind behind" Los Angeles' legendary KJLH (kindness, joy, love and happiness) was the co-creator (along with a Washington, DC programmer) of the very successful "Quiet Storm" Urban format.  Quiet Storm was a Godsend to contemporary jazz artists and did a lot to elevate the likes of Benson, Jarreau, Franks, Metheny, Crusaders, Grover et al.
> It was also a precursor to the Smooth Jazz format.  In its later years, the Smooth Jazz format increasingly took on elements that made it sound more like a "whitewashed" version of the vintage Quiet Storm format.  Lawrence, "LT" to his buds is one of the most musical, passionate, knowledgeable programmers of the past 50 years.
> Starting in 1978 , i began to solicit contemporary jazz artists to mainstream jazz radio.  I suggested there was a new, young audience they could garner and attract by incorporating this style into their mix.  Many stations embraced it, and many others did not.  In the markets where it wasnt embraced, openings were created for Quiet Storm stations.  They leveraged Grover, Crusaders, Ronnie Laws
> Benson, Jarreau and many others...and then they OWNED them.
> Today's programmers would benefit greatly from keeping a watchful eye on LT's moves.  KJLH was an amazing radio station, and LT has programmed others (including an Urban outlet in LA that gave The Wave its only serious competition).  Had Mr. Tanner ever had the benefit previously of a GREAT signal, his influence would be substantially greater.
> And for you sports fans, LT is and has been the in-house "Voice of the Lakers" doing live play-by-play for all Lakers games for 20+ years.  [Yes, ive always been envious!]  Speaking of which,
> We're working on another 3Peat hoops fans! Gooo LAAAAAAAKKKERS!
> ricky schultz
> jazzconsultant.com
> "how can we help you?"

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