This past year was a tough one for 2 time Grammy nominee Jonathan Butler. From the passing of his mother, the loss of one of his closest friends Wayman Tisdale, to supporting his loving wife in her battle against cancer. But faith pulled the singer-guitarist-songwriter through the troublesome times as his 15th solo recording, So Strong is born.
The album on the Rendezvous record label debuted #2 on the Billboard Contemporary Jazz Charts. Butler’s musical gifts and his belief in spirituality, love and determination are clear reasons for this chart topping success.
“Those tough times that happened in my life brought me to a place where I wanted to make a record that is positive,” Butler told SmoothJazzTimes.com. “Sometimes trials and tribulations can bring out the best in a person. I was able to work through everything with God on my side. That is why I call the album So Strong,” he said.
So Strong is bursting with energy. It is alive, fulfilling, symbolic with the times and offers music that is pure fuel for the soul. Butler produced and arranged the album, played most of the instruments, including guitars, bass and keyboards. The jazz giant believes good music is healing and uplifting. He shares this passion on the recording with a team of noted artists including Rick Braun, Dave Koz, Angie Stone, Michael Lington and Gordon Campbell. In addition there are two extra special guests on the project – Butler’s daughters Randy and Jodie who sing backup vocals. “It is really special for me to have my friends and my own children to work on this record. It brings alot of postive energy to the table.”
From inspirational tunes, urban slow jams, to high energy adult pop songs, the key message throughout So Strong is to celebrate each day God has given us, and embrace peace, love and happiness. “I had a fun time doing this record. I do enjoy all the selections on there. It really has a great urban flow which is exactly what I was also trying to accomplish,” Butler said.
The second song on the album, “You’ve Got to Believe in Something,” expresses faith’s power and its significance in pulling one through life’s ups and downs. Butler said this record comes at a good time in the wake of storms facing so many families today. “There’s been alot of negativity going on. We learn so much about it in the news – from earthquakes to people loosing their homes, and much more,” he said. “So I wanted to make a record that people could also find themselves singing in their car, or on the beach, and just feeling good about what they are listening to, ” he said. “I want to bring a smile to my fans because at the end of the day when you have God on your side, things will always work out right.”
For concert and tour information visit www.jonathanbutler.com
To purchase So Strong visit our SmoothJazzTimes.com Music aStore by clicking on the “Music Store” link.
1. So Strong
2. You Got to Believe in Something
3. Make Room for Me
5. Feels So Good
6. Be Here with You
7. Avia/For My Baby
8. I’m Right Here
9. Color Green
10. Good Times
11. I Can See Clearly Now
12. I Pay Respect