- ROB WHITE –
“Youth” vs. “Wisdom”. Some may argue that “Youth” wins because it is associated with freshness, vigor and vitality. While others may argue that “Wisdom” prevails because the power of knowledge through experience gains confidence and insight. Rob White’s sophomore release, “Just Kickin’ It” just happens to be the perfect combination of both “Youth” and “Wisdom”.
Rob played his first instrument at the tender age of 7. It was the violin. He went on to master every instrument given to him thereafter, from the soprano, alto and tenor sax to the flute. There was no escaping the presence of music in his life. He was brought up in a family of singers and his familial lineage ties him to Jazz great, Duke Ellington.
It was in Indianapolis that Rob would get his big break in the music industry. There he met Erica Williams of E2 Entertainment. "I couldn't believe the powerful sound that came out of this humble, unassuming artist!" says Erica. That's why when Rob got the nod from her long time friend, Charles Huggins, he knew it was an incredible opportunity. "I couldn’t believe that I was going to be a part of such a musical legacy, as a musician on Orpheus Enterprises, the company responsible for the debut projects of so many amazing artists!" Having a long history of hits, Orpheus has been responsible for such Billboard-topping talents as Najee, Freddie Jackson, Alex Bugnon and Andre Ward. Rob knew this was the perfect place for such a young, creative artist as himself. The irony was that he grew up listening to these same artists continuously in his household as a child. Blame it on his mother.
Beau Huggins, President of Orpheus and Executive Producer, felt strongly about Rob’s talent; “Keeping in the tradition of the artists that have been part of the Orpheus musical lineage, Rob continues to carry the torch as the next generation of artists that are respecting their past while connecting with the future.” Working with the same producer from his debut CD, "Let It Ride," Rob looked forward to creating more magic on his second release with seasoned producer, Rahni Song.
Rahni has been a part of the Orpheus family since the beginning and helped create the distinctive sounds for Najee and Alex Bugnon. He has taken Rob to a level professionally that Rob didn't even know was obtainable. And the young artist makes it known, "Rahni taught me to take control of the tune and not let the tune take over me. He is a true master of his craft.” Beau knew the chemistry between the two was undeniably unique and made sure that they worked together on the second release.
When Rob talks about this new album, excitement fills his voice. He wants to shatter the idea of what it means to create “Smooth Jazz”. For Rob, “Just Kickin’ It” touches the soul and breaks categorical boundaries. This is music that takes inspiration from the past and present. It’s music that people can identify with no matter what age. Tinges of hip-hop, soul and funk can be felt throughout the album, with an energy that is truly undeniable. It’s music that makes you feel good.
The first single, “Should’ve Kissed You,” originally done by Chris Brown, showcases Rob’s ability to capture an already beautiful song and make it his own. There is a sweet innocence to the piece that can be felt in each effortless note. While at the other end of the album, the infectious “R U Ready For This,” will have fans in a funk frenzy.
Rob also pays special tribute to those that have inspired him, including the one and only Michael Jackson with his rendition of “Earth Song” which features up and coming artist, Naomi Emanuel. Proud to be able to showcase new artists he also spotlights songstress, Crystal Faith on the luxurious “Everything”.
Rob White’s freshness, vigor and energy mixed with experience, insight and confidence are a great balance in showcasing his undeniable talent on this sophomore release. In the end, it’s surely the fans that are the winners when it comes to the “Youth vs. Wisdom” debate and when it comes to “Just Kickin’ It”.