This highly accessible instrumental jazz album features a very special combination of Central Illinois musicians. Along with Hart on vibes, piano, and drums is Champaign piano legend Don Heitler, guitarist Mike Nellas, bassist Tim Brickner, and drummer/ percussionist Jeff Magby. The music is stylistically diverse, featuring several original compositions. Adding a special touch are tunes written by trumpeter John Scott and pianist Mike Kocour, also former Central Illinois musicians. Topping things off are two fun, jazzed-up 80s tunes!
Hart and his various groups have been performing fresh arrangements of classic, contemporary, Latin, and original jazz throughout Illinois since 1993. His groups have performed at numerous music festivals, concert series', and jazz venues throughout Illinois. Hart has also performed an unusually long-standing weekly gig with guitarist Mike Nellas at Panache in Peoria since 1997. Kevin's groups are often featured on Central Illinois jazz radio shows, and his Latin Jazz Quintet released Corazon in 1996.
An active vibraphonist, pianist, and drummer, Hart has performed and recorded with Bob Washut, Dave Hoffman, Jane Hartman, Brian Wilke, Dave Dreyer, Sam Crain, Champaign Underground, and the Illinois Jazz Orchestra. Other performances with Illinois jazz treasures include Ron Bridgewater, Don Heitler, John Scott, Jeff Helgesen, Rachael Lee, Gaile Thomas, Bobby Broom, Zach Broch, Orbert Davis, and Eric Schneider. In the last few years he has also performed on drums with Jack McDuff, Steve Turre, Henry Butler, Jerry Bergonzi, Terrell Stafford, Jeff Newell, and Rufus Reid.
As a college student Kevin had the unique experience of performing on stage with many inspiring jazz greats including Dizzy Gillespie, Clark Terry, Ed Thigpen, Bob Berg, Bobby Shew, Rufus Reid, and Louis Bellson. He is currently an instructor at Knox, Parkland, and Illinois Central Colleges.