Bernard is a Chicago-based jazz/smooth-jazz guitarist whose new cd,"A NEW DAY" contains over 70 minutes of funk-jazz/smoothjazz instrumentals-10 originals + 4 unique versions of cover tunes by Earth,Wind &Fire,Chicago,the Temptations, and the Doors.
The influences of Wes Montgomery and George Benson can be heard in Bernard's playing.Other sources of inspiration include:Lee Ritenour,Larry Carlton,Kenny Burrell,Grant Green,the Crusaders, C.Santana,Stevie Wonder,E,W&F,Incognito,Ronny Jordan,Hugh
Masekela,David Sanborn, Grover Washington jr., and Azymuth(Brazilian).
With all of those various influences(and many more),I decided not to take the "safe" route by doing a one-dimensional project," says Bernard. "On this cd, the listener gets to hear some of the styles I like and use when I play live," he adds.
"LIGHT MY FIRE represents the guitar/organ funk-jazz sound I grew up playing and was very popular in Chicago; DOWN TO THE WIRE, A NEW DAY, JUST MY IMAGINATION, and NICE 'N EASY represent the smooth jazz genre; CHI-TOWN STRUT, THE WAY YOU MOVE, and KEEP ON STEPPIN' are uptempo grooves for the urban "steppers"; S.O.S. is a funky tune with an Afrobeat rhythm inspired by my interest in AfroPop music; BOSSAMBA combines elements of the new Brazilian sound and the "chill" sound; WHERE IS LOVE? has a smooth Latin-influenced vibe; DOES ANYBODY REALLY KNOW WHAT TIME IT IS? is done in a straight-ahead jazz style; and the other tunes (A NEW BEGINNING and FUTURE STEPS) come from my absorbing some of the sounds from the "chill" music movement."
A New Day has received very favorable reviews and airplay on 4 programs in the UK. (Denis Poole's Smooth Jazz Therapy(www.smoothjazztherapy.com); Smooth Groovers (www.smoothgroovers.com); Colin Hughes' "Strawberry Jazz" (www.strawberryjazz.com), and most recently, Rod Lucas' 'Best Smooth Jazz' & 'Best Smooth Grooves' (www.bestsmoothjazz.com & www.bestsmoothgrooves.com). 3 original songs ("Chi-Town Strut", "Keep On Steppin'" & "Where Is Love?" have been featured on Chris Acton's "The Wav" program (www.wavjazz.net). In 2015, Songs from 'A New Day' have been aired on SmoothJazz.com.pl , a popular new European station.Other radio programs in the U.S., Australia, Canada, and Brazil have also played songs from 'A New Day'. In June, 2011, music from 'A New Day' was added to Graham Johnson's popular 'A.M. Attitude' smooth jazz program on www.smoothjazz905.com(Australia). Additional programs that have featured Bernard's music in 2011 include: Mark Stanley's syndicated SoundTraxx show (U.S.); Solar Radio (U.K.); the popular syndicated show, JazzNet247 Radio (Austria); CroozeFM (Belgium); 1067TheBridge.com (U.S.); Solar Radio (U.K.); and the AquarianWave show (Japan).
Bernard has worked as a leader or co-leader of various guitar-organ trios/quartets in the Chicago area after spending several years working as a social worker and vocational rehabilitation counselor.He played at Andy's Jazz Club, one of Chicago's premier jazz clubs, for over 10 years and worked on Chicago's popular Rush Street area for over a year. (Check out his website at www.bernardalcornmusic.com).