Home / DGC Spotlight / BRIO EXECUTIVE GROUP LAUNCHES SAX IN THE CITY FEATURING KIRK WHALUM AND TOM BRAXTON

BRIO EXECUTIVE GROUP LAUNCHES SAX IN THE CITY FEATURING KIRK WHALUM AND TOM BRAXTON

W.E. Scott Theater will host the kick-off of Sax in the City presented by Brio Executive Group. The Smooth Jazz concert event of the year featuring Grammy winner KIRK WHALUM, Texas native TOM BRAXTON and a steaming warmup performance by Soul Train Nominated Saxophonist Vandell Andrew.  This amazing night of smooth jazz will take place on Sunday, May 29th with two shows at 5:00 PM and 8:30 PM.  VIP tickets are available for $75, and general admission tickets are $60.

Kirk Whalum & Tom Braxton
Kirk Whalum & Tom Braxton
Soulful, passionate, stirring…these are the words most often used to describe Whalum’s music. Forged from his Memphis, (TN) gospel roots and his 1980‘s initiation into the thriving Houston, TX nightclub scene, Kirk’s big, rich tenor sound is unmistakably his. The 80’s were highlighted by Kirk’s stepping out of his blossoming sideman role and forming his own band. It was there that Kirk ultimately developed both his “voice” and songwriting in the crucible of the local club scene. It was also in Houston where jazz pianist Bob James “discovered” him and brought him on tour, which led to five successful albums with Columbia Records, including Cache, Kirk’s first #1 album. As well, Kirk and Bob received a Grammy nomination for their collaboration album, Joined at the Hip. After moving to Los Angeles, Kirk became an in demand session player for top artists like, Barbara Streisand, Al Jarreau, Luther Vandross, Larry Carlton, Quincy Jones and most notably, Whitney Houston, amongst many others. It’s his sax heard on the mega-hit, “I Will Always Love You.”
Kirk soon followed that career high point with his phenomenal hit album released on Warner Bros. Records, For You, perhaps the most successful of over 25 solo recordings to date; others include his eclectic, and much lauded, Gospel According to Jazz series, (Chapters 1, 2, 3 and 4). In addition to his many solo projects, Kirk is a member of the popular soul/jazz group, BWB, which features Kirk as the “W” of the group with Rick Braun (trumpet) and Norman Brown (guitar). “We are thrilled to be able to bring a jazz show of this caliber back to DFW with the Brio Summer Jazz concert series,” says Brio Managing Partner Marcus Jordan. “We wanted to offer up a fantastic evening of smooth jazz and bring two of the best jazz artists in the country back to the Metroplex. Kirk and Tom are the perfect musical combination to reintroduce Smooth Jazz to Fort Worth and put the area back on the map as a viable performance destination for the country’s top Jazz artists.”
Joining Whalum is Tom Braxton, considered to be one of the most prolific saxophonists in Smooth Jazz. Braxton’s distinct, melodic sound has been thrilling audiences of all ages from coast to coast and abroad for nearly two decades.  This versatile instrumentalist and gifted composer is a seasoned performer who has the amazing ability to “grab the heartstrings” of the audience within the first few minutes of his show; engage them with his exceptional skill, wit, and charm; and leave them astounded, clapping, and on their feet screaming for more! This native Texan has recorded eight albums including The Next Chapter (2014), Endless Highway (2009), and Imagine this (2007) on the Pacific Coast Jazz label and Bounce (2005) on the Rendezvous label.
His latest release, The Next Chapter, features Grammy winners Bob James, Earl Klugh, and Ricky Lawson, as well as one of Smooth Jazz’s most beloved guitarists, Peter White, who all lend their amazing talents to stellar duets with Tom’s lyrical saxophone.  His music can be heard on radio and television airwaves nationwide, and his albums have hit numerous Jazz charts including Billboard, RadioWave, SmoothJazz.com, Groove Jazz Music, Capital Jazz Radio, and Amazon.
Setting the tone for the night will be New Orleans native Saxophonist Vandell Andrew. Andrew’s leading single “Let’s Ride”, from his uptempo 5 song EP called “Turn It Up”, reached #1 on the Billboard Charts and was nominated for a 2014 Soul Train Award for “Best Contemporary Jazz Performance”.
Brio Executive Group Co-Founder and Managing Partner Mario Clark had this to say when asked why Jazz and why DFW, “There is such a rich pool of talented jazz musicians in the DFW Metroplex.  The pedigree of the musicians here range from Jazz legends who call DFW home, to up and coming artist who are striving to preserve the genre. Being that jazz is such a diverse genre today, we are constantly brainstorming about strategic ways to create future platforms that will aid in bringing much deserved exposure to National, regional and local Jazz artist in the cities that we visit.
Based on our event experience in Dallas-Fort Worth and the established and growing relationships with the jazz artist here, we felt that the DFW market would be a great market to launch the series.” Clark concluded, “We think that by bridging the gap between what Jazz used to be, what it is now and where it’s going, we can propel the genre even further as we move forward and take Brio across the country!” The next stop on the Brio Summer Series is Houston, Texas.
Tickets to this incredible night of music are on sale now. $75 VIP tickets include an artist meet and greet prior to the show, premium seating and hors d’ouevres. General admission seats are $60.  Scott Theater is located at 3705 W. Lancaster Avenue Fort Worth, Texas 75104.  For more information, or to purchase tickets, visit www.brioexecutive.com
A portion of the proceeds from Sax in the City will benefit The Gentlemen’s Society. The program mentors young men, between the ages of 8 and 18, educating them about life choices, self-respect, and goals.  Participants in the program attend weekly, structured courses that include lessons on conflict management, communication, manners, college preparation, personal responsibility and citizenship. 
ABOUT BRIO EXECUTIVE GROUP
Brio Executive Group, a strategic entertainment production brand, provides an entertainment platform that encompasses various forms of Jazz music.  Their goal is to preserve, implement and promote unique Jazz events that provide an intimate entertainment atmosphere for targeted consumers.
Brio strives to bring back the days when a night of Jazz was more than entertainment…it was an experience.

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