Four-time Grammy nominee and multi-platinum selling sax-man Boney James will perform the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach Summer Concert Series on Friday, Oct. 12. The funky/R&B/soul jazz artist will present “An Evening With Boney James” for the final show of the 2018 series.
James is currently on tour in support of his latest album “Honestly” which follows his 2015 album “Futuresoul” that spent 11 weeks at no. 1 on the Billboard Contemporary Jazz Chart. “Honestly” is currently no. 11 on the Billboard Jazz Albums Chart and his new single “Up All Night” has held a spot at no. 1 on the Billboard Smooth Jazz airplay chart for four consecutive weeks.
Backstage SoCal caught up with James for a Quick Q&A prior to his Newport show.
Throughout the years that we have had the pleasure of interviewing you and covering your concerts, you have included a variety of surprises – including special guests and cover songs – into your shows. What kind of unique elements will you present at the closing show of the Hyatt Summer Concert Series?
This show is different from our last time at the Hyatt Newport. My “Honestly ” CD came out since we were there and we’re playing a bunch of new songs as well as some of my catalog that I hadn’t played before. It’s a really fun show.
We last spoke in December when you performed the Hyatt Regency’s New Years Eve Party with Jeffrey Osborne. What exciting things has 2018 brought you?
Well the new record has been a big success with three #1 singles and a crossover R&B track that did really well too. That’s always a thrill. Mainly we’ve been out on the road playing shows, which is still one of my favorite things to do.
Which jazz artists are you often compared to?
Hmm, not sure about that. I’ve mentioned Grover Washington Jr as a big influence when I was younger, but I’m not really sure what people are saying about me!
What advice do you give aspiring jazz artists?
Just keep doing it! And practice! If you have the passion to make music, it’s a great thing to struggle for whether you “make it” or not.
What challenges do jazz artists face today in comparison to other music and art forms?
That’s a tough question for me since I was fortunate to come on the scene and gain an audience before all the major changes in the music business. It’s always challenging to make and sustain a career in any art form, and the internet has just made new challenges and opportunities.
I just try to keep my head down and focus on making great music and putting on great shows. I’m grateful my audience is still interested and this has been my best year ever.
What can your fans expect from you in the near future?
We’re announcing a big Spring Tour for April 2019, adding another 20 shows to the Honestly Tour. I’ve just started dusting off the studio to think about new music. Hopefully in 2020 I’ll have something new.
An Evening with Boney James
Where: Hyatt Regency Newport Beach, 1107 Jamboree Road
When: 8 p.m. Oct. 12