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  • Smooth Jazz Network

Paul Brown: Behind the Beats

Each week we'll take you 'Behind the Beats' to learn more about the artists that play on our airwaves. This week: Paul Brown.

The new single “Nothin’ But Love" is out! What are some of your goals for 2021?

Hopefully get back to live shows being able to play these new songs for music lovers all over the world The 2020 pandemic certainly derailed live performances. How did you cope with this challenging year? Well it seems like there’s not much to do except record these days, so I’ve been incredibly busy in the studio. Luckily golf courses are still open, so between playing golf and working alone in the studio it’s pretty much life as usual. But I really miss my friends and playing music with them. I have lost count of how many #1’s you have either recorded or produced. How many is it now? Over 70… and now a lot of features as a guitarist which is fun too.. Any favorites among the bunch? It’s funny that none of the vocalists I’ve worked with went number one, at smooth jazz radio. But I really love doing vocal records. I’ve been lucky enough to work with some amazing singers...Luther, Al Jarreau, George Benson, Jeffery Osborne, Patti Austin, Shai, Dianna Ross, Michael McDonald , but vocals are still tuff at smooth radio

You are the king of collaborators and have worked with probably more artists than anyone. Is there a dream collaboration you would have liked to have? Anyone living or not?

I always wanted to do a jazz record with Aretha , I wanted to do a duet with Boney and Joe Sample. But I have had an amazing run working with my idols over 30 years now

Most people know you for your Smooth Jazz hits as a solo artist and producer for other smooth jazz performers, but you started out working with R&B legends like Diana Ross, Aretha Franklin and Luther Vandross. Tell us about these early experiences. Most of them came from working with Luther. Once people knew I worked with him , it was easier to get hired. But he was producing Aretha and Diana, and hired me ..also Lisa Fisher and Gregory Hines. Even Boney wanted to first work with me because of Luther. Lord knows I learned a lot from him. How has social media changed your approach as a solo artist? I’m still figuring that out. I’ve never been into self promotion before. I have been luck I guess that it was never necessary , but with face book I have booked tons of live shows and got recording jobs too. It used to be hard for artists to reach out to me before FB. Now they leave PM’s and make contact.I love traveling and it’s made that more frequent for sure. Any favorite shows you’ve binged this past year? Or favorite films? I’m a jeopardy freak. Even got to attend a taping right before Alex died. Jacqui and I watch every night . Just saw SOUL, loved it

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