Seven-time Grammy® award winning gospel & jazz pianist and producer, whose career includes collaborations with Kirk Franklin, Snarky Puppy, Erykah Badu, Chaka Kahn, Fred Hammond, God’s Property, Kim Burrell, and Yolanda Adams, makes a special BLU debut with his own exciting & high-energy project!
Yes, Shaun Martin has a natural gift that has been evident since he began playing drums in church at the age of 4. Yes, his mother had the vision to arrange piano instruction from Carolyn Campbell and guide him on his path. Yes, he has several Grammys from his work with Kirk Franklin and the gospel powerhouse God’s Property. and Yes, he has a Grammy that crowns his many years with jazz fusion phenomenon Snarky Puppy. But you will not find this information in discussion with this gently powerful man because he wears none of this on his sleeve.
Shaun Martin has been playing, creating, and collaborating for most of his life, yet his contributions go much further than just playing. When you move through the projects that Shaun has been a part of you can feel his style and influence; you can sense his presence throughout the compositions. Shaun’s willingness and ability to be a subtle part of each band have allowed him be part of the very foundation.
Seven years ago Shaun began a project of his own. A story of his life, a contribution to the world of music from his eyes (and ears). In demand by many, Shaun took his time with the album as the story expanded to include a wider range of experience. And so, on July 7 we present to you Seven Summers – a big chapter in the history of the great Shaun Martin. Seven Years. Seven Summers. Seven Seven.
“Seven Summers is an album that was clearly well thought out; a refreshing feel in today’s world of instant production. “I’d say that 7 Summers is a chronicle of growth in character and perspective. As I grew over the last seven years, I experienced so much and I wanted to translate that through the music and lyrics…”
- Shaun Martin
Seven Summers is the record that you would expect when a seasoned player with roots in several genres takes the time to let the music unfold. Shaun narrates in a very personal way as the album opens, and then takes us through a project seven years in the making. A rollicking New Orleans second line track leads off (One Big Party), and the story continues with a breezy trip through jazz in some of its glorious variations. As we reach the center, three vocal tracks show the depth of Shaun’s musical concept, composition, and arrangement. In the center of these three is the stunning Love Don’t Let Me Down, sung by Claudia Melton with emotion and elegance. Once you’ve settled in with the soulful vocals, off we go again into a moving jazz track as we lead up to the crown jewel of Seven Summers – Madiba. Complete with narrative introduction, this one takes off with a shot as Shaun leads us into a trans-global explosion of style – Driving rhythm, powerful horns, dramatic jazz with a casual touch of fusion. The record comes to the end with a nod to Hip-Hop (All In A Day’s Work) featuring Geno Young and RC Williams – a feel good track about the hustle of today’s independent musician. The album ends with Shaun’s sublime yet clear piano, and one can feel the curtain closing on an experience to remember and hold dear.
This is a must-hear show at BLU, so get your tickets early & experience this amazing performer as he blazes into the Rubber City for a special Sunday show!