Making his saxophone sing like a human voice--that’s BONEY JAMES.
Soulful and gifted, the three million-selling saxophonist and songwriter is one of today’s most respected and best-selling instrumental artists and performers.
With his latest album SEND ONE YOUR LOVE (Concord)--featuring “Don’t Let Me Be Lonely Tonight,” nominated for a Grammy for “Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance”--BONEY furthers his longstanding reputation as a major force in both the worlds of Contemporary Jazz and R&B.
“It's a total blast for me to be nominated in this category. I’ve always felt a bit like an R&B singer trapped in a sax player’s body. When I play, it really is in my mind like I’m singing and I’ve often referred to my music as ‘instrumental R&B.’ So to have this recognition in the genre of music that has always been so inspirational to me is a great honor.”
The East Coast-raised and Los Angeles-based artist has not only sold over three million albums--he’s earned a string of 12 hit records (including 8 Billboard Contemporary Jazz #1’s) and garnered an array of honors: a Soul Train Award for Best Jazz Album, three Grammy nominations--two for Best Pop Instrumental Album and one for Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance--and an NAACP Image Award nomination.
2009 was truly a watermark year for BONEY. Billboard ranked him the #1 “Hot Smooth Jazz Artist” as well as the #2 “Top Contemporary Jazz Artist.” Send One Your Love has been on the “Top Contemporary Jazz Album” chart for 44 weeks since its February 3, 2009 release and was ranked #2 for that chart overall for 2009. He was also the #3 Contemporary Jazz Artist of the Decade (behind Norah Jones and Kenny G.) and the #8 Best-Selling Jazz Artist of the Decade.
Boney James was born in Lowell, Massachusetts and grew up in New Rochelle, New York, where he was influenced by Motown music, as well as the work of contemporary jazz saxophonist Grover Washington Jr. Later James honed his R&B chops while touring and doing session work with such stars as Morris Day, the Isley Brothers, Randy Crawford, Ray Parker, Jr. and Bobby Caldwell. James made his debut as a solo artist with Trust in 1992, virtually creating the genre of “urban jazz. “
For his new CD Send One Your Love, Boney says that his concept was “to take the sexy quality of the sax and combine it with classic soul love songs plus some of my new compositions to make the ultimate ‘make-out CD’. I wanted this to be an album, not just a collection of songs, to tell a romantic story from the beginning to the end.”
No doubt his legions of fans will agree he’s succeeded and James will be out on the road supporting the CD throughout 2010. According to Boney, "The communal experience of playing live--that's why I became a musician in the first place. It's exciting and liberating. It never gets old for me." Of his live show, The Philadelphia Tribune said, "To put it mildly, Boney James...was THE BOMB. An unbelievable technician who knows how to work a crowd...A tough act to follow.”