For many enthusiasts, David Murray is already a jazz legend, if we look at the number of albums he has recorded, of concerts he has performed and at the number of awards with which his career to date has already been crowned (Grammy Award, Guggenheim Fellowship, Bird Award, Danish Jazz Bar Prize, musician of the 80's by the Village Voice...). However, just over a quarter of a century into his career, his music still expresses the verve and inspiration of youth, throughout a career which is prolific as much in terms of output as in terms of musical orientation (from the World Saxophone Quartet, of which he is one of the founders, to his octet, not forgetting his big band and the encounter with the Gwo Ka Masters of Guadeloupe, amongst many other groups and creations), all of it with the greatest musicians. David Murray goes down as a worthy successor for some of the biggest names in jazz, and he is now contributing to the rise of young talents such as Lafayette Gilchrist, a young pianist who has already been widely acclaimed by the critics.
"Be Bop and shut up! An impossible task for the young David, at the time of the free jazz and civil rights movements, the last adventure of the end of century jazzman. Impossible, too, for the son of Baptist parents, discovering the Negro spiritual style in the time of Coltrane and during Ayler's best period, not to be political right down to his tenor-playing fingertips. David Murray, now in his fifties, has 130 albums to his name and contributions to around a hundred other recordings as a guest artist behind him.
Macy Gray parlayed an utterly unique voice and an outlandish sense of style into R&B stardom at the turn of the millennium, appealing to audiences of all colors in search of a fresh alternative to mainstream soul.
Released in the summer of 1999 Gray's first album, On How Life Is, won glowing reviews and great word of mouth, but in spite of all that -- plus a moderate hit single in "Do Something" -- the record was initially slow to catch on. That all changed early the next year, when Gray received two Grammy nominations (for Best New Artist and Best Female R&B Vocal), and the single "I Try" started to take off on radio. "I Try" proved to be an enormous hit, and On How Life Is suddenly sold like hot cakes, entering the Top Ten and going triple platinum by the end of 2000.
In late 2000, Gray contributed two vocal tracks to Fatboy Slim'sHalfway Between the Gutter and the Stars album; she subsequently recorded with the Black Eyed Peas, cut a duet with rap legend Slick Rick for the Rush Hour 2 soundtrack ("The World Is Yours"), and made her screen acting debut in the Denzel Washington police drama Training Day. Released the following month, The Id was a determined effort to play up the crazy side of Gray's image; it entered the charts at number 11 and quickly went gold on the strength of lead single "Sweet Baby." During 2002, Gray appeared as herself in the blockbuster film Spider Man and also guested on Santana's Shaman. One year later, her third album -- The Trouble with Being Myself -- arrived on the shelves. With a new production team, including will.i.am from Black Eyed Peas and his confederate Ron Fair, Gray returned with a slicker, Tom Joyner-approved version of soul on 2007's Big, featuring collaborations with Natalie Cole and BEP's Fergie. The Sellout, a 2010 release on the Concord label, featured some self-composed songs and an appearance from Bobby Brown. Gray then signed to the 429 label and released Covered in 2012. The album featured renditions of songs by Metallica, My Chemical Romance, and Kanye West.