I mentioned last week staying power and longevity for groups with the right stuff that are willing to explore and evolve musically. This week we have another artist group Special EFX that meets all the criteria. Their success has been immense and long lived. They were formed in New York in 1982. They are still popular and just reached our billboard’s top 3 last week with the title track from their album Deep As The Night. This is an album that marked their 35th anniversary and already produced a billboard number one last year, their song Lavish. Special EFX started as a duo comprised of the smooth romantic guitar of Chieli Minucci and the wide ranging global percussion of Hungarian-born drummer/percussionist George Jinda plus a revolving variety of other musicians including Dave Grusin and McCoy Tyner.
In 1995 Minucci and Jinda split due to creative differences, with Jinda continuing to work under the Special EFX name. However, in early 1997, tragedy struck when Jinda suffered a massive stroke and lapsed into a coma from which he never recovered. Jinda passed away in New York in 2001 at the age of 60.
After Jinda's passing, Minucci, who had transitioned into a successful solo artist, respectfully decided to continue recording under the Special EFX banner, occasionally appearing as Chieli Minucci & Special EFX.
Minucci is also known as a composer for television and film, Minucci has won three Emmy Awards, in 1998, 2007, and 2008, and has been nominated for 10 Emmy Awards for his compositional work on CBS’s Guiding Light, and for such well-known programs as Dancing With The Stars, American Idol, the theme for Good Morning America, the theme for Bloomberg Radio, Access Hollywood, The 700 Club, and others. He also contributed music to the soundtracks of the movies No Country For Old Men (2007 Paramount), Bowfinger (1999 Universal), Legally Blonde (2001 MGM), and Panic (2000).
I will play Billboard’s top three songs in smooth jazz this week.
Our expanded new releases segment featuring the absolute latest in smooth jazz, includes brand new 2018 releases not previously played on this program. We have another song from one of the newest rising young stars of smooth jazz, guitarist Adam Hawley who has held on to billboard’s number one spot for the past three weeks. This is from his album Double Vision just released March 23rd and features the saxophone of Darren Rahn. Other new releases are from the keys of Smooth Jazz pioneer Dan Siegel, the sax of Vincent Ingala, and the guitar of Nils.
This week’s closing song will be another of the absolute latest in smooth jazz. This song is from Lindsey Webster’s Album Love Inside released March 16th. She is the first vocalist for many years to reach billboard’s number one song and the smooth jazz artist of the year the past two years.