"Jazz and soul singer Sweet Baby J'ai has been steady building a loyal fan base on the West Coast and beyond with her choice renditions of top shelf repertoire. She stretches herself even further with her latest release which finds her doing the Latin blues boiler "Sweet Corinne," tapping into her inner Helen Reddy on "I Can't Cry For You," recalling sensual moments in sweet afterglow on "You Were Great Last Night," and groovin' you with the jazz musings of her spoken word detour "Exactly Like You (Perpetrating)." Most special of all are two heartfelt pieces J'ai composed herself - "Frida's Song" (soulful props to the pain behind the paintings of the great Frida Kahlo) and the teardrop stained ballad "Upside Down." This super multi-talented lady is going places. Get on the train!" URBAN NETWORK
"I'd probably fit Sweet Baby J'ai somewhere between Chante Moore, Oleta Adams, and Anita Baker. If you find their voices to be appealing, you'll definitely find a way to bring J'ai Michel's music into your home."
The Run-Off Groove
"With an inspiring collection of material from contemporary jazz, blues and pop, look for the new J'ai Michel to make a splash across the radio dial...5 of out 5 stars!"
Arts & Entertainment
Few entertainers can command a stage like the indefatigable, Sweet Baby J'ai. She is a critically acclaimed singer, songwriter and arranger who has toured the world with her distinctive sound. Although J'ai is known for her energetic stage presence and powerful vocals, all agree that this versatile singer-songwriter is a "storyteller". As one critic pointed out referring to her washboard playing, “This ain’t no backyard hoe down…she will have you swooning, crying, shouting and cheering before the concert is over”.
This latest cd, Introducing J’ai Michel, produced by renowned producer, arranger, pianist, Jane Getz and Grammy Award winner, Bob Tucker, boasts an eclectic mix of R&B, pop, jazz, rock and blues with a little spoken word thrown in for good measure! Whether singing a swinging version of a standard, a soulful R&B ballad or a rockin’ original, Sweet Baby J’ai weaves her special magic through songs seemingly tailor-made for her intimate style.
When your mom gives you such a memorable name as “Sweet Baby,” odds are you’re gonna end up in the entertainment industry. Sweet Baby J’ai continued the family business after sneaking into Kansas City jazz clubs as a kid. With an uncle who worked as a bassist for Billie Holiday and a cousin who played guitar with Dizzy Gillespie, J’ai was constantly surrounded by the music that would become her career.
She has been heard on radio and television both nationally and internationally. She has performed extensively in the U.S., Europe and Asia and has been featured at numerous concert halls, festivals, clubs and benefits, from the Walt Disney Concert Hall, Ford Amphitheater to Tokyo Concert Hall, Casablanca's Super Dome and more. She has won awards and been recognized as “Best Entertainer”, “Pick of the Week” and “Pick of the Month”, many times. She has shared the stage with such luminaries as, Melissa Etheridge, Herbie Hancock, Etta James, Jill Scott, Joe Sample, Tom Waits, Koko Taylor, Patrice Rushen, Sheila E., Tramaine Hawkins and the late Nel Carter and Eddie Harris, to name a few.
If you don't yet know her, let me advise you that those who come across her path fall instantly in love with her deep, powerful, sometimes playful and sensuous voice. She is provocative and impassioned, combining her infectious personality and original style with the influences of Etta James, Hebbie Hancock, Melissa Etheridge and Bonnie Raitt.