Jazz saxophonist, Danny Lerman, releases new album

May 22, 2008 10:57:16 AM PDT
The South Bend native and semi-pro hockey player has been involved in the music scene for years.The title of Danny Lerman's new album "Meow Baby" comes from a line in an episode of Kojak; it proves that saxophonist Danny Lerman knows how to have fun. He also knows retro cool when he sees it. Lerman took a page from the 1970's when recording his second album, "Meow Baby," which was released in February on Sugar Whiskey Records, his label, distributed by Lightyear Entertainment/EMI.

Danny adopted old school sensibilities by utilizing live musicians and having a hand in writing all the new compositions for the disc. Tal Bergman, who worked on Lerman's debut album, produced ten songs on "Meow Baby" and a few tracks were produced by urban-jazz icon Norman Connors.

Since his last album release, Lerman traveled and performed around the world, including Turkey, Israel, Holland, South Africa, Venezuela and Mexico. He brought influences and musicians from the countries he visited into the studio when recording "Meow Baby." While the tracks swing towards contemporary jazz, urban and adult pop, there are also traces of World Music, Middle Eastern, Latin and South African rhythms.

The South Bend, Ind. native, who plays alto and soprano sax, recorded the majority of the collection in Los Angeles where he was joined by Randy Brecker, Hubert Laws, Howard Hewett, Paul Jackson Jr., Bobby Lyle, and Munyungo Jackson. Bergman, who played drums on records by Rod Stewart, Billy Idol, Loreena McKennitt, Herb Alpert, and Chaka Khan, was behind the drum kit on most of the album.

"Tal brought infectious rhythms that were both exciting and exotic. His strong rhythmic influences made the tracks spicy," said Lerman. "I wanted this record to be a glimpse into my world, including some of the friends that I've made in my travels. I put both myself and the places I've been into the music. There's definitely variety on this record; you don't know what's coming next. I've found some great players from all parts of the world and they brought their unique perspective to the album."

Lerman's a riveting performer who has shared concert bills with Herbie Hancock, Sergio Mendes, Richard Elliot, David Benoit, Eric Marienthal and the Ghetto Boys. When he's off the road, Lerman occasionally performs free concerts at nursing homes in his hometown of South Bend, Indiana.

Danny got his first job at age 13 with a jazz big band, then studied with Charles Atkins, who taught Motown Icon, Jr. Walker and Danny's uncles, jazz musicians in their own right. Danny went to Babson College, to play ice hockey, but following his musical dream he transferred to the Berklee College of Music in Boston, then on to graduate from the University of North Texas. "I met some great song writers there such as Tim Kobza and Marc Sutch and was inspired to write and record the music that had been singing in my head."

Lerman composed and recorded his first CD, "Do you Feel?" in South Bend and built his name touring the Midwest. "At North Texas they didn't teach me how to dance or front a band. I learned on the job, at least fronting the band."

Danny partnered with producer Tal Bergman for his next CD, "Danny's Island," performing and writing with bassist, Oskar Cartaya and flutist, Dave Valentine The CD Danny's Island, reached top 20 on the Contemporary Jazz charts of record industry publication Radio & Records, and the single, "Take My Breath Away," reached the number one position on the playlist of WGCI, Chicago's number one urban music station. The song was re-issued as a bonus track on "Meow Baby."

Danny's compositions are also featured in the movie soundtracks "Wedding Bell Blues," and "Kill Me Later".

Danny has not abandoned his other passion, hockey. He still plays in a semi-pro league and recently skated out to the middle of the ice to perform the national anthem at a University of Notre Dame Hockey game.

For more information, visit DannyLerman.com


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