Singer Najma Akhtar, a world-renown pioneer in the fusion of jazz and Indian 'Ghazal', recently joined acclaimed saxophonist Stan Harrison at a video shoot for the title track of Harrison's upbeat new CD, 'The Optimist'.
The new video, the first from Harrison as a headliner, features trippy, retro visual effects, and was shot in New York City last month. Harrison's commanding, muscular solos are complemented by Akhtar's haunting vocals (her singing is also a highlight of the CD, which has received rave reviews - see below.)
Take a look at Stan Harrison's video for The Optimist," featuring vocals by Najma Akhtar.
Harrison's second video for album focuses on the track Nothing Less Than You." Both are at YouTube.
Both videos were Directed by Justin Adler, and shot in and around the Zipper Theater in Manhattan. In addition to Harrison and Akhtar, the clips feature DJ Harley Wertheimer, Yayoi Ikawa on keyboard, Brad Albetta on Bass and Sterling Campbell on Drums (Stan Harrison comments: I've known Sterling since the late '80s when we toured together with Duran Duran. He's one of my favorite drummers and a great person. I was thrilled when he agreed to be in the video. He's been very busy with the B-52s and I was lucky that he had the time. I should add that he played with Bowie for quite a while but not when I was with him.")
Rock/jazz saxophonist Stan Harrison has stepped out of the shadows and into the national spotlight with the release of 'The Optimist'. In their March issue, JAZZTIMES Magazine praised Harrison as a devilishly inventive tenor..." Not what you might expect..." Critics have embraced the CD in recent months, and additional national coverage is in the works, including what is expected to be a rave feature in SAXOPHONE JOURNAL Magazine (which will include Harrison on the cover of an upcoming issue.)
Harrison has performed with and/or appeared on albums by some of music's most respected bands/singers (including David Bowie, Talking Heads, Radiohead, Duran Duran, Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble, They Might Be Giants, and many more...) But it's with 'The Optimist' that he's found his own distinctive 'voice'.
The ten original songs on 'The Optimist' showcase Harrison's sax, as well as the vocal talents of legendary artists, including Philip Bailey (Earth, Wind & Fire,) Phoebe Snow, Andy Vargas (Santana,) Najma Akhtar, and more. Harrison's long-time colleague Gerard McMann produced the CD, which features a hybrid of jazz, classical, pop and World musics. In a terrific CD review and interview, California's N2Entertainment praised the music as dazzling and upbeat."
A quick visit to Harrison's 'Credits Page' on ALLMUSIC speaks volumes about his extraordinary track record.
SOON TO APPEAR WITH THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS AT TOWN HALL ON APRIL 20TH, FOR TWO AFTERNOON PERFORMANCES OF TMBG'S CHILDREN'S BASED MATERIAL.