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MUSIC - Bob Baldwin - contemporary jazz pianist, music composer, author, and producer

REVIEWS  -   INTERVIEWS  -   VIDEOS

Bob is a multi-facetted person. He is a Jazz Artist, Radio Host, Music Presenter, Arts Advocate, Educator, and Author.

He has "a vision to take his gift of music to bless those less fortunate, and raise funds for organizations in need of help."

Bob is originally from Mount Vernon, N.Y. He began playing piano when he was four years old, and was taught by his father, Robert Baldwin, Sr., who was an accomplished jazz pianist and upright bassist. His Dad performed with "Keter Betts (Ella Fitzgerald’s main bassist) and Art Davis (the last bassist for the legendary John Coltrane), both Westchester residents."

In his youth, Bob would accompany his father to jam sessions near home, and had the opportunity to listen to and study the music of "the masters of the Westchester region."

Later, Bob was influenced musically by a number of artists, "strongly by Herbie Hancock, Stevie Wonder, Patrice Rushen, Chick Corea, EWF, Joe Sample, Ramsey Lewis, Miles Davis, and George Duke." His style is "a by-product of these artists." The influence of these artists had "a profound impact on Baldwin’s musical journey. Even after studying accounting, business and broadcasting in college, he never strayed far from his first love."

During the 80's, Bob performed with a who's who of talent, including Roy Ayers, Gerald Albright Dean James, Jeff Kashiwa, Dave Mann, Chieli Minucci, Phil Perry, Jocelyn Brown, Kim Waters, Will Downing, Marion Meadows, Najee, the late Grover Washington, Jr., and Noel Pointer, Tito Puente alumni Ray Vega, and Brazilian Percussion Cafe' Da Silva.

In 1986, he and Al Orlo formed The Baldwin/Orlo Project. Notably, the group "performed at the legendary Bottom Line in New York City, leading to his first production with trumpeter Tom Browne. This opportunity led to his first album and eventually to his two-album deal with Atlantic Jazz Records."

. In 1989, Bob released his first CD, "A Long Way To Go" with The Dream Featuring Bob Baldwin. During the same year, he met "the legendary Herbie Hancock at a Sony Innovators ceremony in Beverly Hills". "As one of his childhood idols, the meeting with Hancock inspired him during his own formative years, and even today."

In the 90's, Bob performed with the likes of drummers Poogie Bell and  Lenny White.  Marion Meadows, Tom Browne, James Robinson, Noel Pointer, Freddy V (Average White Band) and numerous other musicians.  Before Atlantic Jazz Records ceased doing business in 1994, Bob recorded "Rejoice (1990), and "Reflections of Love" (1992). A third album was recorded but never released, "State of Mind" (1994).

Bob likes to think creatively, and in the case of his first independent release in 1996, "City Sketches," a "commemorative celebration of Atlanta's unique history, during the 1996 Olympics, he proved this. Bob privately released the disc, through the Internet. The compilation of songs is a musical portrait of the city of Atlanta, Ga. The album was released on his own, City Sketches, Inc.™ label.

In 1997, Bob released "Cool Breeze" CD on the Shanachie Records label, with the hit single "Summer Breeze," featuring saxophonist Marion Meadows and guitarist Larry Coryell.

The 2000's...

In 2000, Bob released "BobBaldwin.com " on his City Sketches label.  It was the second release on his label, and proved to be "his most popular in his catalog, with reported sales of over 70,000 units."

Bob wrote the following after 9/11, "Like everyone else, the events in September 2001 moved my soul and impacted me tremendously. From that point, it felt necessary to write music that says 'be proud of who you are, stand up for what you believe, and do what you love, and that tomorrow is not granted to any of us. Art does imitate life and vice versa, so live your life to the fullest... today,"

In 2002, Bob produced two discs, Standing Tall and The American Spirit.  He traveled to South America, and spent six weeks in Brazil in 2004. While there he said it gave him an opportunity to "feel the spirit of the people and get into their music and their beautiful aura.” The influence of their music produced "Brazil Chill" on a440 Records label, Bob was accompanied by an all Brazilian band. In 2005, Bob released "All in a days work" on the 215 Records label.  With the release of "NewUrbanJazz.com" (2008), a "fused Jazz, and Funk with vocals" CD, he also launched his new radio show on WJZZ in Atlanta, GA.  In 2009, he released "Lookin' Back," "a reflection of his career, dating back to his first recordings of 1988 and features Chuck Loeb, Marion Meadows, Will Downing, Grover Washington, Jr., and Tom Browne."

In 2010, Bob released "Never Can Say Goodbye: A Tribute to Michael Jackson," and "Betcha By Golly Wow: The Songs Of Thom Bell" in 2012.

Bob released "Twenty," with an all-star group of musicians backing him up, in 2013. His 20th project since beginning his musical career in 1988.

Released "The Brazilian-American Soundtrack" in (2016).

REVIEWS

The Brazilian-American Soundtrack (2016)

"For those not in the know, Bob Baldwin is a New York-born contemporary jazz pianist, music composer, author, and producer, who learned music from his father, Robert (Bob) Baldwin, Sr. Baldwin's recording career started in 1983. He has earned five SESAC Music awards, initially for his 2002-2003 airplay of "The Way She Looked At Me," followed by one for his 2008 airplay on NewUrbanJazz.com, one in 2010 for his Never Can Say Goodbye: A Tribute to Michael Jackson, and one in 2011 for NewUrbanJazz.com / Re-Vibe, and one for his disc "Twenty". His 2015 release, "MelloWonder / Songs In the Key of Stevie", which honors Stevie Wonder, debuted #16 on the Billboard Overall Jazz Charts.”    ~ AnneCarlini.com

StarPortrait - The Brazilian-American Soundtrack (2016)

"Composer and multi-instrumentalist Bob Baldwin assembled a Latin-American team of musicians to create the ultimate soundtrack for Olympic 2016 in Rio... The double album encompasses the recordings of two hemispheres, Movement I Rio-Ipanema and Movement II New York. Every CD is created in separate cultural circles with very own musicians... Bob Baldwin's double feature The Brazilian-American Soundtrack is a concentrated charge of entertainment. With more than two hours the listener gets a stunning recording full of melodic ideas.”    ~ smooth-jazz.de

Twenty (2013)

"With so many artists celebrating milestones in this biz, it is only fitting that we turn to yet another in keyboardist/producer/entrepreneur Bob Baldwin who celebrates 2Bob Baldwin0 albums in 25 years with his release of Twenty. This one was a bit late getting to me, but the music makes the wait very tolerable as Baldwin produces some more of that slick, strutting sound of R&B/jazz/funk that bears his fingerprints all over it. With masterful tributes to the late Michael Jackson (Never Can Say Goodbye) and Thom Bell (Betcha By Golly Wow: The Songs of Thom Bell) now under his belt, Baldwin again ventures out with his own creative endeavor. The tunes here are typical Baldwin: Tight, well-phrased, often funky, and with a lot of bounce and charm. Along with rich covers of Herbie Hancock and Freddie Hubbard, Baldwin has Marion Meadows, Joey Sommerville, Ragan Whiteside, and Gabriel Mark Hasselbach, among others helping out here. The result is simply of top-shelf quality. ”    ~ thesmoothjazzride.com

Betcha By Golly Wow: The Songs Of Thom Bell (2012)

"New urban jazz keyboardist Bob Baldwin disdains the "smooth jazz" moniker, but that doesn't necessarily mean he isn't familiar with the conventions of the genre. He's got ideas that don't have a thing to do with cranking out infinite versions of the same old sound with a few new riffs. Baldwin is a bit more ambitious than that and with Betcha By Golly Wow: The Songs of Thom Bell he honors one of the most successful songwriters of 1970s soul music.”.  ~ Jeff Winbush - All About Jazz
"Celebrating the legacy of one of the most influential songwriter/producers of our time, Bob Baldwin Presents “Betcha By Golly Wow”: The Music of Thom Bell. A passionate homage to one of the architects of the classic “Sound of Philadelphia” that revolutionized the soul of R&B music, the 11-track collection on Peak Records also reflects the grooving, multi-cultural vibe the keyboardist, composer and musical innovator has trademarked as “NewUrbanJazz™." ~ Ione Lundy - Smooth Jazz Magazine

Never Can Say Goodbye: A Tribute to Michael Jackson (2010)

"Baldwin interprets Jackson in a pretty straightforward and direct manner, with few frills or unnecessary flourishes. Another artist might have overly embellished the material with strings, horns, a battery of overdubbed keyboards, vocalists and other trappings; instead, Baldwin lets the music do the talking, and guest appearances by guitarists Steve Oliver, Chieli Minnucci and Chuck Loeb, along with trumpeter Joey Sommerville, add subtle but not showy contributions. Loeb—the newly recruited replacement for Larry Carlton in Fourplay —shines especially on "Never Can Say Goodbye.”.   ~ Jeff Winbush - All About Jazz

INTERVIEWS

"Handling an early time slot was keyboardist Bob Baldwin, servin’ up funk for a mature crowd of music lovers in a rare west cost appearance as a leader. Flanked by sax man Art Sharod, bassist Trey Gilbert and drummer Jay Fly, Bob rocked the crowd with funky smooth takes on Hall & Oates’ “Sarah Smile,” Seals & Croft’s “Summer Breeze,” a salute to Joe Zawinul and a tune Bob wrote in Brazil called “Capazino.” But he really got an added rise out of the early risers with “Never Can Say Goodbye,” the title track o f his new Michael Jackson Tribute CD. It’s a 12-song set of inventive arrangements on 10 MJ classics plus two Baldwin originals that swings from a slinky take on “Bad” to a version of “I Wanna Be Where You Are” that whisks you to the African jungle. "
~ A. Scott Galloway - Urban Network/a>
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Link: ~ Blog Talk Radio

VIDEOS:

Bob Baldwin - The Message (A Maurice White Dedication)


Bob Baldwin at the Iridium, N.Y. 2011 Part 1 "Joe Zawinul"


Bob Baldwin - Never Can Say Goodbye