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After many years of writing, producing and recording the music that is so very much a part of her DNA, singer /songwriter Joy Mover is taking her first giant step toward actualizing her lifelong vision with the July 31st, 2012 release of her self-titled debut, Joy Mover.
To say that Joy’s roots are steeped in music is an understatement. Beginning with her great- grandfather, through her maternal and paternal grandparents and uncles, followed by her parents, brother and cousin, Joy’s family has long been populated with professional musicians and singers. A Boston native, Joy has added a new dimension to the family’s musical legacy with her ability to craft original songs, six of which see the light of day on Joy Mover, which will be released on her own Joy Mover Music label on July 31st, 2012. Those originals share space on the album with her distinctive, inimitable take on such classic tunes as “Nature Boy,” “Till There Was You,” “Corcovado,” “Fever,” and “Dream A Little Dream of Me.”
Joy’s creative energy was so sparked when working on the material for this album that she also composed an original verse for the sultry “Fever,” and wrote rap lyrics to introduce her rendition of “Till There Was You,” layering a thoroughly modern attitude harmoniously atop the romantic standard with no trace of discord.
Joy’s uncanny knack for attracting incredible musical talent to help her realize her vision, along with her ability to transcend eras and styles are key elements that set her apart from the multitude of talented vocalists working today. The legendary trumpeter, flautist, saxophonist, flugelhornist, and multi-Grammy®-recognized Ira Sullivan (who has known Joy since her childhood) emerged to add his distinctive stylings on trumpet, alto flute and tenor sax to four tracks. Joy’s brother, Bob Mover, an acclaimed saxophonist who has performed with such seminal jazz artists as Chet Baker and Charles Mingus, and who is currently working with Esperanza Spalding, provides strong tenor sax support on two songs, offering up a stellar solo on “Till There Was You” and romping through “Nature Boy.”
Ira Sullivan was effusive in his praise of Joy’s talent. “To follow Joy Mover in song is to exercise the mind. Sometimes easy and fluid, sometimes intricate and challenging, her voice is always… beautiful,” he said. “Her original compositions possess wit. They are contemporarily ornate and her vocal expression is exciting.”
The collection of artists participating in the making of Joy Mover is beyond impressive. From Joy’s hometown of Boston, guitarist/arranger John Paul, winner of a Billboard Song Achievement award, New England Music Company’s “Best Guitarist” award, and a spot among Jazziz magazine’s “International Top Ten Guitarists,” takes on guitar, bass, synth and vocal duties throughout the project. Paul also arranged several tracks, and co-wrote the instrumental chorus on Joy’s original, “Have You Ever Loved?” Drummer Vinny Damaio (Adam Ant, Jody Watley, Wilson Phillips, and Dianna Krall) provides rhythmic support on Joy’s utterly gorgeous rendition of Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “Corcovado,” as arranged by John Paul.
Hearkening back to her days at the University of Miami’s Jazz Vocal Department, Joy also makes use of a strong cadre of musicians from the South Florida musical arena, including: pianist/arranger Mike Levine (Jaco Pastorious Big Band, Ed Calle); bassists Jamie Ousley (upright) and Javier Carrion (electric,); saxophonist and flutist Billy Ross (James Brown, Julio Iglesias, Frank Sinatra, Mel Torme’), and drummers Sammy Levine and Lee Levin (who has performed with Ricky Martin, Julio Iglesias, the Bee Gees, and Jon Secada, and played on more than 1,000 recordings for such artists as Christina Aguilera, Pink, Nelly Furtado, Enrique Iglesias, and Kelly Clarkson). Guitarist Dan Warner (Celine Dion, Justin Timberlake, Shakira, Gloria Estefan, Enrique Iglesias), and percussionist/multi Grammy® Achievement Award winner, Richard Bravo, (Ricky Martin’s MTV Unplugged and Shakira’s multi-platinum Hips Don’t Lie) round out the stellar contingent.
Joy Mover opens with a set of the songwriter’s original tunes: “Have you Ever Loved,” an up-tempo Salsa propelled by the Latin percussive grooves of Richard Bravo & Lee Levin (drums) which also features standout performances from John Paul on guitar and flautist Billy Ross; “Maria’s Song,” an alluring rock-flavored track that could easily stand alongside Joni Mitchell’s 1970s work; “If I Could Tell You,” a Bossa ballad that again emphasizes the musical chemistry between Joy and guitarist Paul; “Midnight Oil,” a breezy paean to the weekend that is made even cooler courtesy of Ira Sullivan on trumpet; and the gentle, reggae-laced “Only the Wind.”
The Mover family’s musical heritage is immediately evident on “Nature Boy,” as Joy’s soothing yet sultry vocals play off of brother Bob’s strong, supportive tenor sax. Effortlessly gliding between genres, Joy returns to her original compositions with the romantic, mellow “Home Sweet Home.”
Joy adds a truly contemporary spin to Meredith Wilson’s “Till There Was You,” opening the track with an original rap, and eventually turning things over to Bob and Ira both for some burning sax, before Dan Warner closes things up with his equally hot guitar licks. On Antonio Carlos Jobim’s well-loved “Corcovado,” Joy truly shines, her voice weaving through a musical tapestry crafted by Paul’s exquisite guitar, Sullivan’s haunting alto flute, and Richard Bravo’s percolating percussion. Joy’s sultry vocals swing both hot and cool against a backdrop colored by Sullivan’s trumpet and Mike Levine’s piano on “Fever,” leading into the CD’s closer, a light honky-tonked swinging version of “Dream a Little Dream of Me.”
Joy’s decision to combine her own striking original songs with distinctively unique interpretations of familiar material, and to surround herself with an assortment of players that both challenge and support her prodigious vocal talents is proof that while this eponymous album may be her recording debut, she is an artist with a boundless career ahead of her.
According to the legendary Hank Jones listening to Ira Sullivan, “is indeed an occasion for rejoicing for this amazing musician is surely one of the most brilliant artists of his or any generation. He brings to each of his instruments such beauty of tone and fluency of conception that he could readily have made his reputation on any single one of them.” Ira Sullivan has known and inspired Joy since she was a child. Allmusic.com refers to him as “one of the great talents in jazz.” Emerging from the Chicago jazz scene of the 1950s, Sullivan has performed with such jazz luminaries as Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, Charlie Parker, Lester Young, Wardell Grey, and Roy Eldridge. Sullivan’s penchant for nurturing emerging talent is also well established. After moving to Florida in the early ’60s, while teaching at the University of Miami, he served as a mentor to a young Pat Metheny, and on Sullivan’s self-titled A&M release of 1976, he introduced an as-yet-unknown bass player, Jaco Pastorius. He continues the trend on Joy Mover, where he contributes his remarkable and unique multi-instrumental talents on trumpet, tenor saxophone and the rarely sounded alto-flute.
Saxophonist Bob Mover is as widely renowned for his work with such seminal jazz artists as Charles Mingus, Chet Baker, Art Farmer and Jaki Byard, as he is for his work as a recording and performing artist in his own right. Lauded by People magazine as “one of the most accomplished and thoroughly engaging saxophonists around,” and by the Village Voice as “a fleet and soulful improviser (with a Bird-through-Konitz pedigree).” Mover is currently working, touring and serving as Musical Director for Esperanza Spaulding Grammy©-winner for Best New Artist, for whom he served as a mentor in her formative years. He is also currently at work on several new projects of his own, including a new band with drummer Michael Carvin called ‘Unfinished Business,’ and a double-CD, My Heart Tells Me, featuring Kenny Barron, Victor Lewis, and others which is set to be released in 2012.
Winner of the Billboard Song Achievement Award, New England Music Company’s Best Guitarist Award, and a spot among the International Top Ten Guitarists in Jazziz magazine, John Paul was recently inducted into the New Hampshire Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He has led a variety of jazz and fusion bands, including his own John Paul Group, and has recorded and performed with hundreds of New England-based artists, such as Miles Donahue and Myanna, Dave Buda and Steve Hunt.
Mike has recorded and played with Pat Metheny, Hiram Bullock, Jon Secada, the Jaco Pastorius Big Band, Michael Bolton and many others. He was a founding member of and principal songwriter for the Ross-Levine Band, whose 1981 CD, That Summer Something, with Pat Metheny as guest guitarist, spent six weeks in the top ten on the jazz charts. His CD From the Heart, spent over forty weeks in the Top 50 on the Smoothjazz.com Indie Chart and his newest release is 2012’s Thinking of You, with special guests Billy Ross, Will Lee and Ed Calle.
Percussionist Richard Bravo has contributed to over 800 recordings, for artists ranging from Barbra Streisand to Herbie Hancock to Michael Bolton, and has earned 21 Grammy© Award Achievement Certificates. His recent career highlights include performances on Ricky Martin’s Latin Grammy award winning recording “MTV Unplugged”, and creating and recording the incredible rhythms on Shakira’s Hips Don’t Lie multi-platinum CD.
Drummer Lee Levin has toured and performed with pop superstars Ricky Martin, Julio Iglesias, the Bee Gees, and Jon Secada. He has played on more than one thousand recordings for artists such as Christina Aguilera, Pink, Nelly Furtado, Enrique Iglesias, Kelly Clarkson, and many more. His works as producer and engineer has earned him four Grammy© Awards. Levin has also contributed music for NBC television shows, including Friends, Saturday Night Live, and Dateline.
A musician as well as a recording engineer, Javier Carrion has performed as a bassist with the Jonathan Kriesberg Trio and Perry Joslin Project, and also frequently works with Jon Secada, Ed Calle, Mike Levin and a host of others. As an engineer, he has worked on projects for a variety of artists, including Barbra Streisand, Contagious, and Ed Calle. Javier founded Heavy Air Music in Miami, and has earned a Latin Grammy Award, as well as several Grammy nominations.
Recently lauded as the Best South Florida Jazz Musician of 2011 by Boca Life Magazine and cited as “one of South Florida’s most in demand bassists” by Allaboutjazz.com, Jamie has performed for such international luminaries as Bill Clinton, Prince Albert of Monaco and the Dalai Lama. He is currently a Professor of Jazz Bass at Florida International University
Among flutist/saxophonist Billy Ross’ many credits are recordings with James Brown, Jermaine Jackson and Julio Iglesias. He has toured with Marvin Gaye, Michel Legrand, Frank Sinatra, and Mel Torme, and performed with Tony Bennett, Sammy Davis, Jr., Lou Rawls and Nancy Wilson. He is currently a member of the house band of Sabado Gigante.
Guitarist Dan Warner has recorded with Celine Dion, Justin Timberlake, Shakira, Gloria Estefan, Enrique Iglesias, and many others. Warner co-wrote international pop star Mika’s 2007 hit, “Grace Kelly,” which has sold over six million units worldwide. He was also nominated for an Emmy with Comic Sarah Silverman and is a three-time and is a three-time Grammy winner for his work as a producer and engineer.
A musician as well as a recording engineer, Javier Carrion has performed as a bassist with the Jonathan Kriesberg Trio and Perry Joslin Project, and he frequently works and tours with Jon Secada, Ed Calle, Mike Levine and a host of others. As an engineer, he has worked on projects for a variety of artists, including Barbra Streisand, Contagious and Ed Calle. Javier founded Heavy Air Music in Miami and has earned a Latin GrammyC Award, as well as several Grammy nominations.