Eric Crittenden's debut release, "Blu," is a jazz, rock and soul tour de force, featuring collaborations with Soulive's Eric Krasno and Rob Wasserman, as well as his own stellar ensemble.
Having earned respect on the national touring scene by playing his sax with the likes of Bob Weir, Michael Franti and Karl Denson, Eric Crittenden shows with this recording, that he has moved beyond his horn and is on the fast track to success. This multi-instrumentalist, singer and songwriter shows himself at a whole new level as front man and entertainer.
With proactive lyrics, soulful vocals and blazing sax leads, Blu is as progressive as it is classic. Crittenden has a unique way of taking progressive new steps in music all the while keeping it in the vein of the old school. "I see myself as a medium of sorts," says Crittenden. "I play the instruments and write the lyrics, but the music plays meŠit's that simple."
From the time of his birth in Buffalo NY, Crittenden was immersed in the funk and feel-good soul sound of Motown - after-all his father played with James Brown for 13 years. But it was later on in his 20's that he really discovered jazz and organic self expression. Listening to and being influenced by Eddie Harris, Coltrane, Herbie Hancock and Pink Floyd to name a few, completely changed his life and he started on a path of feel-good genre mixing that is accessible to everyone. "For me, in order to go forward you have to go back," says Crittenden "I was raised with old school R&B and soul. This is who and what I am all about, however this is a new era and music needs evolution and I'm fortunate to be able to do my part."
Blu marks a new level of maturity and sophistication for Crittenden. While he is no stranger to the road and making records, this will mark Crittenden's first real national effort. Crittenden's band, will be on tour in support of the record through out the summer and fall. What can you expect from a Crittenden show? Well, take equal parts gospel, jazz, rock and soul, add an extremely talented band, plus Crittenden's fire and you get .... well, you're just going to have to check it out and see for yourself!
While it seems difficult to classify the vibe of this album, you can be sure that one listen to the record will ease your mind, shake your hips and make your soul feel good.
Over the last ten years Crittenden has toured all over the country working the worlds best:
Bob Weir & Ratdog
George Clinton and The Parliament Funkadellic All-Stars
Michael Franti & Spear Head
Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe
Dirty Dozen Brass Band
G Love & Special Sauce
John Brown’s Body
The Doobie Brothers
Future Man of Bela Fleck & The Fleck Tones
Crittenden also led the backing group for “Uncle Junior” (Dominic Chianese from HBO’s Hit series, “The Soprano’s”).
Two-time Buffalo Music Award winner for Best New Original Band and Best Recording and the WBNY Music Award for Best Front Man and Best Instrumentalist.
Multi-sensory Proactive Consciousness….
A recovered addict with over ten years sober, Crittenden believes music saved his life and lives for giving back to the community. At home and while on tour he can always be found teaching children and adults alike, the joys of “lettin’ loose’ and playing music through various workshops and activities designed by his non-profit organization, Soulystic, whose mission statement is: Dedicated to the preservation and promotion of multi-cultural urban art forms, through the education and performance of multi-cultural urban art.