ELEVATIONS consists of founding members and rhythm section George Heid III, Brett Williams, and Anton DeFade in addition to Michael Stephenson and Benny Benack III. The Pittsburgh-native group is quickly gaining a reputation as one of the most exciting, versatile, and original groups in the young generation of today. Their music is firmly rooted in the jazz tradition, with influences from gospel, funk, hip-hop, R&B, and classical. Each member comes from a different musical background, which contributes to the unique sounds of ELEVATIONS. The group placed first in the open combo division at the 2012 Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival and performed at the 55th Annual Monterey Jazz Festival in September 2012.
In every generation, there is a thread. There is a thread of individuals that stand for the majesty of our humanity and our ability to cultivate that communication, to document it, and to codify it to further express that which we are.
ELEVATIONS is the embodiment of this thread, seeking to be that bridge throughout the generations and keeping that which makes us profoundly human, alive and thriving. This musical document speaks to that bridge and celebrates the rich traditions of jazz music while propelling the music forward. I celebrate this generation's thread keepers: ELEVATIONS!
- Sean Jones
I congratulate the musicians and vocalists who recorded this wonderful CD. Listening to the first tune, "Emergence", started me on a journey. The rich sounds of this group grow as they add Hammond B3, vibraphone, woodwinds, and percussion, giving us the warmth of a small orchestra. With these players, I know that there is real hope for the future of jazz.
I believe this CD deserves and will get a lot of play. To all the artists here, I would like to say, ELEVATIONS, keep up the good work .
- Roger Humphries
Everyday the news media broadcasts negative things about our young people. So the question is: what are the good young people up to? Some of them use their intelligence along with the blessing of talent, and choose to study a musical instrument and learn the music called jazz, contributing to America’s most original art form.
What you hear on this CD are young, gifted artists who are committed to upholding the integrity, humility, discipline, patience, diligence, respect, and acknowledgement for the culture of the people who invented and innovated this art form. This music promotes a way of life that celebrates the human spirit and brings out the best in all of us, and we become Elevated!
- Dwayne Dolphin
The first thing I hear is harmony and history. I don’t think that was by accident. It was divine intervention that brought these young men together and because they are in unison as a group, they can collaborate with others of like mind and spirit.
Here are five young artists of music, possessing solid skills on their instruments, guided by deep roots and respect for this African-American classical music called “jazz” - so much so that they can compose their musical stories in this universal jazz language and interpret them with a variety of instrumentation.
ELEVATIONS will take you to a place, a space in time where you will be soothingly massaged and inspired to the optimistic side of life: LOVE, RESPECT, JOY!
- K. Mensah Wali
$20.00 Regular Price