The Magic Melting Pot of Muse:
Charles Alexander Artist Biography
The Magic Melting Pot
A gifted metalworker utilizes the finest valuable ore and smelts it into a malleable form. After much work, the result is a uniquely treasured piece of art. Singer and songwriter Charles Alexander is much like a gifted metalworker – only he works in music rather than metal. Charles has the uncanny ability to take varied genres and styles, and meld them into something truly his own. Together with a dynamic diversity in his fan base, he is the creative source for a hoard of musical treasure. Hundreds of thousands of listeners have already poured into Charles Alexander’s magic melting pot of muse.
A goldsmith spends years learning as an apprentice - and the same was true for Charles as a young musician. With ten other siblings, his family was large, close-knit, and very creative. His father was a minister and the family - quite literally - was the church choir. Charles explains, “My mother became the director of the choir, which included all of my brothers and sisters. This was the first moment music was introduced to me. I was eight years old.” By the age of twelve Charles had become enthralled with the sounds coming out of Detroit’s MoTown sound, as well as the acts from labels such as Stax Sounds. As a teenager, the opportunity to see the Temptations on tour with their orchestra solidified his desire to be a musician.
Performer and Promoter
In 1968, Charles began performing with a group named The Black Magic Band. As a member of the band, he developed and honed his stage presence and performance skills. During the 1970s, he had the opportunity to work with the likes of Grammy soul singer Betty Wright and also performed with legend Chick Willis and Joe Tex. In addition, he became the keyboard player for the popular r&b singer Will Hatcher. This early exposure to music professionals helped Charles form an ear for wide-ranging musical styles and abilities.
The Revue and Kidfest
Charles created what he called the Charles Alexander Revue during the mid-seventies. With over thirty artists on his roster, his revue toured over one-hundred and twenty-five cities in the USA. In the 1970s and 80s, the revue played dates all over the southeast, with shows at North Carolina Central University - and even opening for soul singer Billy Paul. Alexander had morphed into more than a performer – he had become a promoter.
He eventually joined with Jimmy Liggins – the brother of r&b legend Joe Liggins – to continue to promote other artists and talent. Together with his late wife Katherine, Charles started a local access television show called Kidfest TV. The goal of the program was to bring talented children the exposure they deserved from larger audiences. For over a decade the show's success garnished attention from Oprah’s Harpo productions, Star Search, and The Apollo Theatre. Kidfest was Charles’ way of giving back to a younger generation. With the passing of his wife, the love of his life, he began to return the focus on his own music.
The Style of a Solo Artist
For over thirty years, Charles Alexander managed groups of talent and their publicity. However, a recent renewed focus on his solo career has amplified the evolution of his style. With his ability to play keyboards, bass, and strings, Alexander has a wide array of options when composing. Whether it is original music or performing covers, Alexander’s artistic goal is to produce a unique sound. He explains, “ The sound is mine. If I do another artist’s music – It’s their song, but my style.”
The Muse Melts
If genres were ore, Charles gathers it – and melts it into a blend of urban and r&b. He then shapes it with soul and light jazz. “It is break-beat jazz; a unique exploration of progressive rhythm beats,” explains Alexander. Including hints of hip hop and disco, Alexander is also able to forge reggae, salsa, blues and Caribbean music into his compositions. His musical treasures can be best seen when reviewing his solo releases over the past decade. This began in 2005 with the release of “Cry me a Tear” – a smooth instrumental jazz ballad. In 2006 he completed Summer Fever, an album with a reggae and Caribbean theme. It featured eleven tracks in a mix of instrumental and vocal singles. 2006 also saw the release of This is My Dream, as well as a funk/jazz-based album called Gotcha. In 2008, Charles released Passion, with a mix of r&b and urban styles.
2010 and Beyond
In 2010 Alexander released The Key. The album consisted of some cover songs such as “Rainy Night in Georgia” and “By the Time I Get to Phoenix.” Charles explains, “The album was fun because I got a chance to do some of the songs I loved as a child.” As 2011 approaches Alexander is preparing tracks and a brand new album entitled Confessions. The latest compositions will illuminate his stylistic diversity. They include the soulful balled “Where Do We Go From Here,” a Christmas song “Merry Christmas Everyday,” and even an upbeat funky track entitled “Shake That Booty.”
The Mettle of the Muse
Perhaps Alexander’s greatest creative attribute is his mettle. He has the fortitude and the courage to journey onward into new sounds and styles. Charles has spent years perfecting his musical abilities. He’s toured the USA, worked with legends, and had his music licensed by the likes of HBO and PBS. As a promoter and a record label owner, he’s represented over thirty other artists and acts. However, his journey continues onward into the future as his fans anticipate the dynamic diversity of his next release, Confession, due out in January 2011. He has hundreds of thousands of fans. They cross generations and demographics as they enter Charles Alexander’s magic melting pot of muse.