Paris born Christophe de Villa started his musical career in a Rock band and performed later in Parisian funky bands. Addicted by the funky style of British guitarist Ronny Jordan (The Antidote) he soon played with his friend acid jazz and smooth jazz standards. But he is also a fan of the soulful house (deep house, garage, funky house).

On his new album Jazz and Soulful (2010) you will find all these musical elements combined in a mesmerizing mélange. Christophe comments: “I decided in two minutes that “Jazz and Soulful” had to be the name of this album. It was an evidence because it means exactly what is inside this CD: Jazz, Acid-Jazz, Funky-Jazz, Soul, Smooth-Jazz and House Music.”

When you want to learn anything about a musician, you have to listen to his music. Christophe's album is an open book, because he puts all his influences into this nutshell. Foremost Christoph performs guitars, bass and synths on his project.

No wonder, that he launches the album with Wes Montgomery's tune Jingles. Ask three guitarists, who is their idol and they will certainly answer "Wes". Wes recorded this tune for his debut album The Wes Montgomery Trio - A Dynamic New Sound (1959). Somehow Wes build with his style for future genres like acid and smooth jazz. This raw and edgy organ sound in combination with Christophe's elegant guitar riffs is a great flashback. Gabriel Midon shines on piano with expressive runs. And Christophe's bass is the icing on the cake.

On You Are My Girl Christophe switches to a soulful smooth jazz or a jazzy soul. Enois Scroggins on vocals is for me the vocal discovery of the year. His voice is similar to Lou Rawls and with the voice of this quality he deserves the same merits. I hope he'll change his style from funk to moving ballades. That would offer a brilliant future. This song is the prove for my opinion.

Christophe de Villa is performing in the Première Classe featuring multi-talent Gabriel Midon on saxophone. While one can observe his smooth jazz attitude on this album, Gabriel is on his own gigs an excellent jazz musician with influences from Coltrane to Chick Corea.

Don't take the title I'll Make You Jazz too serious. If you know groups like Down To The Bone or Fishbelly Black, just in that direction moves this tune. Jérome Bensoussan blows a fantastic muted trumpet, while N'dinga and Nathalie André add their sweet vocals. We talk about jazz house! Really deep jazz house!

Torn by Christophe's fast style changes I landed on Window Shopper. Christophe calls it a jazzy version of the 50 Cent classic. With ease he mixes hip hop, smooth jazz and jazz to an attractive novelty. With Tender Love he tickles my Nightlife vein. Oh yes, I recognize these George-Benson-like riffs. Come on, let's dance. Featured songstress Mary P. has attractive vocals.

Love Is On My Side increases in velocity. While Mary P. cites the title in refrains, the instrumentalists expose their instrumental knowledge. This Song Is For Roy is Christophe's tribute to the legendary vibraphonist Roy Ayers. Great emotion, vibe, feelings, groove.

Searchin' For Love is a DJ Pit remix featuring Shanice Williams. After three minutes the house song switches to smooth jazz with some guitar chords before it returns into house again. When you think, you have heard everything, Christoph tops the whole thing with A Night In Tunisia. Originally penned by Dizzy Gillespie in 1942, this tune soon became the jazz standard and Dizzy's signature sound. Christophe's interpretation is very elegant and contemporary.

Christophe De Villa's album Jazz And Soulful is a big basket filled with musical surprises. You never know, what you hear next. Always cool and refreshing.






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Album Information

Title: Jazz And Soulful
Artist: Christophe De Villa
Year: 2010
Length: 0:44:59
Genre: General Jazz


01 Jingles [4:16]
02 You Are My Girl [4:19]
03 Premiere Classe [4:13]
04 I'll Make You Jazz [5:12]
05 Window Shopper [4:12]
06 Tender Love [3:59]
07 Love Is On My Side [4:14]
08 This Song Is For Roy [4:43]
09 Searchin' For Love [5:14]
10 A Night In Tunisia [4:37]