About Harlan Jefferson
Jazz Saxophonist Harlan Jefferson released You’re All I Need in 2007 on Rotown Records, a label founded by Jefferson and Dave Ayres. The third full-length CD written, produced and performed by Jefferson, You’re All I Need reflects the eclectically-mature taste in music the saxophonist had even as a child growing up in a musical family.
Influenced by blues, jazz, R&B, gospel, and hip hop and instructed by his father A.Z. Jefferson, Jr., Harlan began performing at the age of 10. By the time he was in junior high school and active in bands, he became known locally as the “National Anthem Player,” performing at college, semi- and pro-ball games from Rockford and Chicago up to Milwaukee, Wis., including suburban areas.
A rapper/dj-turned-saxophonist, his reputation came full circle in 2006 with the release of the single “The Chicago Bears Anthem.” Written by Swade, Harlan Jefferson executive produced and promoted the ultra modern rap-with-class that was played in Chicago at one of the Bears games. The track was quickly picked up by DJs, who played it in the streets, in clubs, on the Internet, and on television stations and music and sports radio stations in Rockford, Chicago, and Indiana.
While working in Chicago, Harlan hooked up with CloseUps2, a jazz club that has an annual jazz festival. He played 3- and 4-day stints at CloseUps 2 and The Back Room, all the while working on his next CD.
You’re All I Need is a smooth helping of contemporary jazz, gospel and poetry. Harlan’s style and method are aptly described by his father, A.Z. Jefferson on the spoken word piece “A Smooth Sax Man.”
His deep commitment to soul music has sparked many flames. Neo-Soul Night developed out of one of those sparks. Held on Monday nights at Kryptonite, a nightclub known for providing original music and supporting the arts, Neo-Soul Night was well-attended for more than two years. Patrons relieved Monday burdens with performance poetry, down-home cooking by Harlan’s mom, Estelle, smooth jazz from SoSoTight, and hip hop dancing at the end of the night.
The concept of Neo-Soul Night led to Soul Explosion, a tribute to soul artists such as James Brown and Rick James, who have passed on. An Easter Sunday evening production, the Silver Lounge turned from busy to standing room only as the night progressed.
Continuing to work all ends of the music business,
Harlan was picked up by www.grabow.biz,
his my corporate agent based out of Texas that also books gigs for stars
such as George Benson, Alicia Keys, Black Eyed Peas, Faith Hill and
AC/DC, just to name a few.
He still finds the time to work weddings and give private saxophone lessons. When he’s not out of town, fans can find him Big Al’s every Tuesday and at Franchesco’s every Friday, performing everything from Frank Sinatra and Louie Armstrong to Marvin Gaye, Prince and John Legend.
Rockford Park District contracts him as Entertainment Consultant for the youth advocate programs Levings Showcase and Hip Hop Night at The Getaway. Starting early in the morning and until after show time, Jefferson rarely complains. His love of the entertainment world shines through because he always aware of his main objective: To create refreshing, innovative ways to entertain the audience and bring the music to the people.
You’re All I Need can be purchased at CDBaby.com and at Borders and Ubiquity Records in Rockford. The next Soul Explosion will be held at Big Al’s on Saturday, November 24, 2008 at 8 p.m.
You’re All I Need (2007 Rotown Records)
Venues & Festivals
Musicians Performed with/opened for:
Links to Harlan: