Justin Kauflin From "Keep On Keepin' On" Debuts To Rave Reviews on Jazz Village
On January 13, Jazz Village presents the new album Dedication by jazz piano prodigy Justin Kauflin, produced by Quincy Jones. Kauflin is the subject of the award-winning documentary Keep On Keepin' On, which chronicles his mentorship and friendship with the legendary musician and teacher Clark Terry. Quincy Jones presents two album release parties for Kauflin: January 29 at The Blue Whale in Los Angeles and February 10 at The Jazz Standard in New York City.
Dedication, which reached No. 5 this week on iTunes' Top Jazz Albums, features 12 original compositions by Justin Kauflin, whose sidemen on the album are Billy Williams on drums, Chris Smith on bass, Matt Stevens on guitar and Etan Haziza on nylon guitar. Nate Chinen writes in The New York Times that Kauflin "favors a clarity of touch and ideas, rarely spinning into an orbit he can’t control. His writing is also balanced, tempering post-bop intricacies with the assurances of the gospel church."
The album is also an Editor's Pick in Downbeat Magazine, in which Kauflin's voice is described as "mature, distinct and confident. The pianist’s solo on 'Elusive' is expertly crafted...On 'For Clark,' Kauflin manufactures complex, intelligent solo passages over a simple melody that drives the song to a spare, heartwarming conclusion".
"Twelve original tunes...take the listener from hushed tones to tempos ablaze, showing a generous degree of skill, maturity and creativity in the spaces between the notes. Justin Kauflin's knack for making a statement, marvelously build on it, then bring the listener home demands more than a single listen"
- WBGO Radar "First Listen"
The film Keep On Keepin' On has received an overwhelming response since its smash debuts in Los Angeles and New York. On the short list for the documentary category at The Academy Awards, It has won for Best New Documentary Director and the Heineken Audience Award at the Tribeca Film Festival and Audience Awards at Cinema Eye Honors, the Palm Springs International Film Festival, and the Boulder Film Festival, among other accolades. Kauflin has been interviewed on The Today Show, with Quincy Jones, and on the Queen Latifah Show, where he also performed.