Introducing a new kind of urban sounding jazz on their debut CD for Jazzheads Records, \"The Birth Of Hip Bop.\" The album is already buzzing among the critics!
Chris Spector from the Midwest Record writes, \"... it\'s a dandy urban party record for when the street crowd has a taste for some up market ambience.\"
This new music combines a traditional walking bass with thicker, heavier hip hop and funk rhythms. Then add some real blowin\' and an occasional rap or scat vocal and there you have it... a brand new genre of jazz. Call it... \"HIP BOP!\"
Edward Blanco from eJazzNews describes it as \"... one interesting session of music...what you\'ll hear on this recording you\'ve not heard before.\"
Hip Bop\'s creator, Lou Montelione is a jazz pianist and recording artist with Jazzheads Records. In a review of his label debut, \"Comin\' Back Home\" which was a mainstream jazz outing, Jack Bowers from All About Jazz writes \"... the man plays some serious jazz piano...You may even find yourself glancing at the jacket from time to time to make sure you\'re not actually listening to one of jazz\'s \"big-name\" keyboard artists. That\'s the sort of persuasive impression Montelione fashions on his debut recording, breezing confidently through song after song with a sure-handed technique and clear-headed conception...\"
After the success of \"Comin\' Back Home\" Montelione decided to change course and realize another musical vision which was to merge hip hop music with jazz music in a particular way that remains true to jazz. To make it work he joined with musicians not only well versed in jazz, but who had a contemporary sensibility as well.
Eric Huff is Too Blue Lou And The Groove\'s saxophonist. His heartfelt, vibrant playing became a leading voice for this new music.
Huff played and arranged for Beyonce Knowles as well as many other top artists such as Gloria Gaynor, Melba Moore, Billy Preston and Kirk Franklin just to name a few. It\'s no wonder Walter Kolosky from Jazz.com writes \"...saxophonist Huff is especially impressive.\"
Daisuke Abe the guitarist of the band was born in Tokyo. He graduated at the top of his class at the Jazz Course Of Senzoka Gakuen College and received a world scholarship to Berklee where he then received the Louis Belson Award.
Daisuke\'s lyrical style adds beautifully to the overall sound of Too Blue Lou And The Groove.
Roy Weinberger, the drummer, has played with greats from all genres of music from Bo Diddley to Jaki Byard to Percy Sledge to Slam Steward and has played major venues all over the world.
It is this kind of experience that enabled him to develop a way of combining the different musical genres essential for hip bop music.
Mike Aidoo is a rapper/vocalist and performs with Too Blue Lou And The Groove as a guest artist.
Lou Montelione - keyboards/vocals
Eric Huff - alto/soprano sax
Daisuke Abe -guitar
Roy Weinberger - drums
Mike Aidoo (guest artist) - rap/vocals
\" ... Lou Montelione\'s \"Too Blue Lou And The Groove\" is one interesting session of music...what you\'ll hear on this recording you\'ve not heard before. If you\'re game to sample a new style of music give this one a chance.\"
All About Jazz
Not all attempts to blend jazz with rap are successful. Once in a while, a merger of these genres works. \"The Birth Of Hip Bop\" by Too Blue Lou And The Groove is one such merger.
\"...All the players make it seem as though they\'re playing for the simple joy of playing - a characteristic present in several songs.\"
This crew just want\'s to have fun. ...A crisp set with a good groove woven into some solid beats, ...it\'s a dandy urban party record for when the street crowd has a taste for some up market ambience.
We Won \"Song Of The Day\" for \"Blue In Green\"!!!
Walter Kolosky Jazz.com
The best of the bunch is an absolutely inspired take on \"Blue in Green.\" Too Blue Lou and the Groove have turned this classic ballad into a true progressive jazz anthem. As far as I know, \"Blue In Green\" has never been approached from this aggressive angle. We usually want to hear how beautiful the piece is played, rather than thinking of the tune as a great power showcase. This performance has propulsive rhythmic force and melodic imagination. Though the whole band is in the groove, saxophonist Huff is especially impressive. This is a performance worthy of hitting the repeat button.