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Straight No Chaser - A Jazz Show

Welcome to Straight No Chaser, the Award-winning Podcast hosted by Jeffrey Siegel

Jun 29, 2010

My readers know by now that I rarely have very good things to say about the slew of smooth jazz recordings that come across my desk. Too often, smooth jazz becomes a dilution of the things that make jazz such a vibrant idiom - loss of memorable melody, loss of emotion and wit, loss of memorable improvisation.

It's a plwasure to say that First Impressions, the debut CD from Hulon, a Florida born saxophonist, is an exception to this rule. Strongly influenced by the type of funky jazz that Grover Washington Jr played before he mellowed out in the mid-Eighties. Produced by Jeff Kasiwa, one of the better smooth jazz stars recording these days, First Impressions moves beyond background music to continually interst, if unchallenging, music.

The original mateial, either by Hulon or Kashiwa has better than average hooks, and exceptional playing. Hulon is not afraid to stretch beyond the cliched sax solo, and his rhythm section of Melvin Davis and Dave Hooper rarely lets him rest. Click here to listen to the first single from the CD, "Sax on the Beach" for a taste of pure Florida sunshine.

Hulon and his wife Dinah are dedicated philanthropists, who have dedicated time and money to giving back to their community through their Crayton Foundation. The organization provides minorities with a feasible way to attain the funding needed to attend college. He donates a portion of his CD sales and concert appearance to the charity, making the enjoyment of his music exceedingly worthwhile.

Click here for an enjoyable interview with Hulon conducted by 92.5 Wrap-Fm Clear Channel Radio.