George Benson storms Lagos for 3rd Smooth FM’s Luxury Concert

Posted: August 23, 2012 in art/entertainment

Legendary funk jazz exponent, George Benson, will be the star attraction in the third edition of the now famous Love Music, Love Life Luxury Concert of the Smooth 98.1FM station, in Lagos, planned for Saturday, October 13.

With George Benson as the headline act, the Jazz Master and 10-time Grammy Award-Winning legend, brings his guitar to the forefront and is expected to perform his greatest hits at the Expo Hall of the Eko Hotel & Suites, Lagos.

In a career that spans five decades and with more than 30 recordings as a bandleader, Benson first came to prominence playing soul jazz with the likes of Jack McDuff. Benson then launched a successful solo career, alternating between jazz, pop, R&B singing, and scat singing.

By the mid to late 1970s, Benson began to put his vocals on tracks such as “This Masquerade” and “On Broadway”, which both won him Grammy Awards. While his triple-platinum album, “Breezin”, topped the Billboard 200 Chart in 1976.

Benson’s breakthrough pop album “Give Me The Night” made it into the pop and R&B Top Ten with the song “Give Me the Night” (produced by Quincy Jones and written by former Heatwave keyboardist Rod Temperton) having previously been almost unknown to the younger audience.

Benson accumulated three other platinum LPs and two gold albums. He also recorded the original version of “Greatest Love of All” for the 1977 Muhammad Ali bio-pic, The Greatest, which was later recorded as a cover by Whitney Houston. In 2009, Benson recorded the album titled Songs and Stories, with Marcus Miller, producer John Burk, and session musicians David Paich and Steve Lukather.

His newest album, Guitar Man, is a 12-song collection that includes a mix of jazz and pop standards – some in a combo setting and some solo, but all of them tied together seamlessly by Benson’s soulful and exploratory signature sound. A solid team made up of veterans and newcomers alike – pianist Joe Sample, keyboardist and musical director David Garfield, bassist Ben Williams and drummer Harvey Mason, feature on this album. Benson has used his jazz roots as the foundation for an engaging mix of pop, R&B, and other shades that add up to a style that appeals to a broad mainstream audience.

Smooth 98.1FM came on to the airwaves in 2009, launching its annual Love Music, Love Life Luxury Concert series in 2010 with performances by renowned artists, Angie Stone, Gerald Albright, and Richard Bona featuring Mike Stern complemented by Tiwa Savage, Bez and Pure & Simple.

In 2011, the concert featured Asa, Pamela ‘The Saxtress’ Williams, and Jimmy Dludlu.

This year, audiences will gather once again to enjoy a once in a lifetime performance from the 10-time Grammy Award-Winning jazz guitarist George Benson, as he and his acclaimed band grace the stage at the Eko Hotel and Suites for the first time ever in Nigeria.


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