Featured Artist: Kyle Turner CD: Collection Label: Lykyla Music Style: Contemporary Jazz Year: 2007
Saxophonist Kyle Turner may not be a household name on a national or international level, but those individuals and musicians who are privy to his talented array of skill sets rate him right up there with oxygen. Having been raised in Houston, Texas, Kyle’s level of exposure to jazz reads like a “Who’s Who of Artistic Endeavors;” plus, his father Ardis Turner a very popular Houston vocalist also played a role in Turner’s advancement. He was also spurred on by Kirk Whalum; a relationship that nurtured his natural born talent to even greater heights. At any rate by the time Kyle became a professional musician, he was one of the most recognized musicians in the greater Houston metropolitan area. As a leader, his latest CD entitled ‘Collection’ is the culmination of great collaborations, three previously released albums, gigs with such notables as Luther Vandross, Regina Belle, Johnny Taylor, Bobby Lyle, Joe Sample, Michael Ward and many others.
Kyle Turner’s musical heritage is steeped in the legacy of the so-called Texas Tenor tradition, which was inspired by Arnett Cobb, Illinois Jacquet, David “Fathead” Newman, James Clay, Buddy Tate and Dewey Redman. The Texas tenor sound has been defined as: “A tenor sax slinger with a sound as wide open and freewheeling as the Lone Star State itself.” (Jazzitude—Marshall Bowden) “Collection” as well as Kyle’s music and his previously released albums provide a degree of insight into that Texas tradition; however, there is a twist. Turner is quite comfortable as an R&B or jazz musician. He is one of the most versatile artists around today and his rich tonal quality can be subtle as well as raunchy at any given moment. In the mode of a smooth jazz generalist, Kyle’s sound is viewed as melodic and descriptive. With the release of ‘Collection,’ he provides a window of saxophonic jazz opportunity seldom seen outside of Texas.
‘Collection’ is a recording that re-examines his previous releases with the addition of some new tracks as well. There are thirteen illustrative tunes that exposes Turner’s multifaceted array of skills. Special guest musicians include Fingerprints and violinist Michael Ward, both of whom offer yet another perspective to this latest effort. With the release of ‘Collection,’ it has been said that Kyle has come full circle as an artist; because for the first time, he has a musical expanse to reflect upon. When one examines Kyle Turner’s body of work, the heart and soul of his music is a small- recorded window of opportunity. The true gist of his music can be found in the experience of a live setting, where his passionate embrace of his craft and mind-boggling presence is seen vividly. Without that opportunity, ‘Collection’ is the way into the world of Kyle Turner.
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