Award-winning and two-time Grammy-nominated recording artist Kevin Toney is in the midst of a profound spiritually based compositional renaissance that began with his solo piano project A Grateful Heart (a.k.a. Heart of Gratitude). The next phase of his proposed trilogy is the 9-song New American Suite which introduces his amazing new trio, The Kevin Toney 3 (Kevin Toney on piano, Mike Bradford on bass and Chris Coleman on drums). Though renowned as a founding member of The Blackbyrds in the `70s through his string of acclaimed smooth jazz projects in the `90s/`00s, the now masterful Toney triumphantly returns – at the absolute peak of his performance abilities – to his roots in the traditional jazz and classical music on which he began his journey at the age of 5 in Detroit. New American Suite – consisting of eight new original pieces plus a dynamic arrangement of Scott Joplin’s ragtime masterpiece “The Entertainer” – finds Toney and his remarkably tight new unit creating richly multi-faceted landscapes of improvised music in a contemporary expression, all the while maintaining ties to Americana roots that were, naturally, deeply influenced by the melting pot of cultures that have come to call it home. Song titles such as “Spacious Skies,” “In God We Trust” and “Cyberia” metaphorically represent ideas and concepts of this ‘New America’ in which we now live. Simultaneously, the playing of the musicians – as an ensemble and in brilliant solo turns – showcases psychic interplay and the utmost sensitivity.
Says Executive Creative Producer Don Mizell of this spellbinding debut by The Kevin Toney 3, “They cook, they burn, they smoke. They’re cool, they go deep within, and then a bit outside the box. They’re impressionistic and then aga so-so vivid. They rock, they roll, they jazz it Up and cool it Down. They listen, they say, they swing and sway. They pray, they laugh and groove. They flux and flow — always, always together. What was Old is New again.”