Love Stronger Al Strong

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  • 1Intro Lullaby For The Ancestors00:55
  • 2At-Nimara's Journey06:43
  • 3Pure Imagination06:24
  • 4Out My Mind, Just In Time05:24
  • 5The Dog Who Always Finds His Way Home06:45
  • 6Bull City Bounce05:32
  • 7Fly Me To The Moon07:30
  • 8Black Love05:46
  • 9Old Town Diera07:49
  • 10Lift Every Voice And Sing (LEVAS)08:17
  • Total Runtime01:01:05

Info for Love Stronger

Although AL STRONG is not yet a household name, his newest album, LOVE STRONGER, will surely give him the wide exposure he deserves. Strong is a trumpet and flugelhorn player, composer, arranger, and professor of music. He released his debut recording, Love Strong Vol. 1, in 2015. Strong continues his passionate embrace of music on LOVE STRONGER with six of his original compositions and four standard and not-so-standards tunes re imagined with Strong’s soulful touch.

Strong has performed with jazz legends including Aretha Franklin, Branford Marsalis, Adonis Rose, and Mike Phillips, as well as with R&B/Soul artist Eric Roberson, rap music legend Rakim, and The Hamiltones, a Grammy-nominated soul musical group from North Carolina. He has also headlined shows at the Blue Note Jazz Festival, Winter Jazz Fest in NYC, Smoke Jazz Club, and Blues Alley in Washington, DC.

A military brat, Strong grew up in Washington D.C. Although he toyed with joining one of the country’s esteemed military bands, he decided not to follow in his father’s and grand-father’s footsteps. His talents as a musician were apparent from a very early age, and he attended the renowned Duke Ellington School for the Performing Arts. After graduating, he was recruited by North Carolina Central University, which offered him a full scholarship for a bachelor’s degree in Jazz Studies. He went on to earn a master’s degree in Jazz Performance/Pedagogy at Northern Illinois University, which also rewarded him a full scholarship. Today, Strong is back in Durham, North Carolina where he performs regularly and is a professor at NCCU.

Jeremy "Bean" Clemons, Chris Pattishall, and Kevin Beardsley are the core of Strong’s band. Clemons is a drummer who spent years touring the world with Andy Bey, Gregory Porter, and the reggae legend Burning Spear. He co-produced Strong’s previous album and mixed LOVE STRONGER. Pianist Pattishall has worked with the likes of Jimmy Heath, Jon Hendricks, and Wycliffe Gordon. Strong was so impressed by his talents that he began working with him when Pattishall was still in middle school. Strong is also joined by a roster of superb musicians from the Durham area who span the range of musical styles.

Al Strong, trumpet
Jeremy Bean Clemons, drums
Chris Pattishall, piano, Fender Rhodes, keyboards
Kevin Beardsley, electric bass, double bass
Sullivan Fortner, piano
Mark Whitefield, guitar
Braxton Cook, alto saxophone
Lewis Hawkins, tenor saxophone
Brevan Hampden, percussion
Thurman Woods, bass
Marc Cary, Fender Rhodes
Ryan Hanseler, piano, alto saxophone
Bluford Thompson, tenor saxophone
Charles Robinson, piano
Hugh Swaso, guitar
Gabriel Cavassa, vocals

Al Strong
is 2x Grammy Nominated trumpet player, composer, recording artist and educator. A cultural innovator, he is the co-founder of the Art of Cool Project, which spawned the original Art of Cool Music Festival in Durham, N.C. and the stArt of Cool youth summer camp.

Strong is lauded for his distinctively unique sound. Whether melting hearts at a whisper volume or being gracefully dynamic when the music calls for more intensity, his natural ability to strike listeners at their core is unmatched. His 2016 debut album, LoveStrong Vol. 1, a 10-song mix of original music and jazz classics, garnered national and international attention for its “blues-inflicted, Southern church-happy” sound.

A native of Washington, D.C., Strong is a graduate of the renowned Duke Ellington School for the Performing Arts and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Jazz Studies from North Carolina Central University and a Master’s in Jazz Performance / Pedagogy from Northern Illinois University.

Strong’s discipline and dedication to his craft has forged a prominent career that includes performances with music legends such as Aretha Franklin, The Count Basie Orchestra, Dwele, Eric Roberson, and The Hamiltones. He’s also served as music director for hip-hop pioneer Rakim and has headlined shows at the Blue Note Jazz Festival, Winter Jazz Fest, and Blues Alley.

Known for his creative ability to seamlessly re-imagine existing works like Thelonious Monk’s “Blue Monk” and the classic “My Favorite Things,” Strong aims to challenge the boundaries of music while connecting with his audiences.

He continues this mission of storytelling with his latest project “LEVAS,” Strong’s heartfelt arrangement of the Negro National Anthem, “Lift Every Voice and Sing.”

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