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Genres You Will Love
Moods: Featuring Saxophone Jazz: Jazz-Funk Jazz: Jazz-Pop New Age: Contemporary Instrumental Urban/R&B: Deep Funk

By Location
United States - Georgia

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Raiff Ellis

Raiff has played both sax and keyboards with such legendary greats as George Benson, Roger Humphreys, Eric Kloss, and Vince Genova. Growing up in the Mississippi delta jamming Dixieland jazz on the front porch with Tom "Bones" Malone -- the legendary trombonist and brass arranger for the Blues Brothers and the Letterman show -- Ellis moved to Pittsburgh and immersed himself in mastering the nuts and bolts of modern progressive jazz as well as classical and jazz composition and arranging. Later, Ellis moved to Atlanta, where he continues playing while teaching at Clark Atlanta University. His jazz bands have toured with R&B groups and singers, usually based on a pact that two sets out of every four would be devoted to modern jazz from the instrumental group. Raiff's latest album release was a collaboration with jazz vocalist Wendy Fulbright on "Puppies Under the House" (also for sale through CD Baby). That album was named after one of Wendy's original songs, which are based on her life experiences. That particular song was based on her childhood, and Raiff did all the orchestral backup arrangements for the album. When playing sax, Raiff likes to set up backgrounds against which he can really cut loose with emotional expression and a big fat sax tone, as in the funky original tune "A Cony Island of the Mind," inspired by both the real Cony Island and the Lawrence Ferlinghetti poem by the same name. or as in the original composition "Rain," blowing over a lush romantic background. "Rain" was inspired by the simmering light one sees refracted in soft, driving rain, and reflecting colors and streetlights in a downtown city setting. Rain can be as romantic as it is moody. Raiff's bands have played major concerts all over the U.S.