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Nick Colionne

The title of Nick Colionne’s highly anticipated KOCH Records debut says it all about the charismatic Chicago-based guitarist’s rich, sizzling mix of jazz, R&B, funk, blues and seductive vocals. In his hard-grooving, supremely soulful world where he’s always, to quote the title of his hit 2006 album, Keepin’ It Cool, there are truly No Limits.

“I went into the project with the mindset of doing a record that was more diverse than any I have done previously.” Colionne says. “I like to call No Limits an adventure because I wanted to explore doing some different things with my music and not limit myself to one genre or style of playing. I’m playing over some different grooves, setting some unique moods and incorporating sounds from other genres, but I’m still staying true to who I am. There’s still my own vibe on the guitar shining through. Besides exploring my passion as a vocalist more than ever before, I wanted No Limits to be a closer reflection of the diversity and spirit of my live shows.”

Since blasting out of “The Big Windy” onto the national contemporary jazz scene in 2003, Nick Colionne’s career has been in ecstatic overdrive, perfectly embodying the crackling energy of his breakthrough mega hit single “High Flyin’,” which hit #2 on the Radio & Records airplay chart and was one of the genre’s Top Ten songs of the year. After hitting further pay dirt with his follow-up Top 20 single “It’s Been Too Long,” he kept up his chart busting ways with “Always Thinking Of You,” the single from Keepin’ It Cool (which itself was a Top Ten Billboard Contemporary Jazz hit) that stayed on the R&R chart for an incredible 45 weeks and was also a Top Ten single of the year at radio as well as the Number One global internet radio jazz single of the year. At the 2007 Canadian Smooth Jazz Awards, he succeeded Chris Botti as “International Instrumental Artist of the Year.”

As powerful a presence as he is on the airwaves, the real Colionne magic happens onstage, where his live performances truly defy categorization. One of most compelling headliners in urban jazz, the supremely stylish performer (whose crisply tailored, colorful outfits have earned him raves as the “best dressed man in jazz” as well as a clothing endorsement from prestigious men’s clothier Stacy Adams) has kept up a breakneck schedule of over 100 live dates a year while whipping audiences into a frenzy with his bluesy jamming, heartfelt singing (his soulful take on “Rainy Night In Georgia” is a long time fan favorite), blazing jazz licks and—”harkening back to the first professional gig he ever did at 15—”even a hint of heavy metal.

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Interview

Nick Colionne: Making a Difference for the Future

Read "Nick Colionne:  Making a Difference for the Future" reviewed by Mikayla Gilbreath


No one likes hearing dire predictions about the imminent demise of jazz as an art form. And yet it's hard to deny that jazz seems at times to be slowly fading into the background. The genre receives relatively scant airplay, and is frequently relegated to little more than footnotes in the annual Grammy awards show. Increasingly, jazz seems to be heard primarily as soundtracks for television shows, commercials and motion pictures. And we've all observed that most young people are ...

265
Album Review

Nick Colionne: Keepin' It Cool

Read "Keepin' It Cool" reviewed by Jeff Winbush


Nick Colionne sounds like a lot of guys. You'll hear a bit of George Benson here and a snatch of Wes Montgomery there, Jonathan Butler or Earl Klugh somewhere else. But that doesn't mean Colionne isn't original. It's just obvious that his style of playing has been influenced by other guitar greats.Colionne has been releasing albums since 1994, but Keepin' It Cool, his first release on a major label, is his big coming-out party. Featuring backing by professional ...

231
Album Review

Nick Colionne: The Seduction

Read "The Seduction" reviewed by Dave Nathan


By classifying this album as smooth jazz, the liner notes do a disservice to the melodic, swinging and often funky guitar of Chicagoan Nick Colionne. I guess it's the presence of the electronic gizmo called keyboards that makes some automatically classify the musical output as smooth. Right from the opening chords of the first track, “Winelight", one gets the feel that Colionne is a descendant of guitar master Wes Montgomery, with more than a dash of soul added. “Black Cow" ...

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Music

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

No Limits

World Culture Music
2008

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Keepin' It Cool

Narada Jazz
2006

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The Seduction

Chicago Lakeside Jazz
2002

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