Art Sherrod Jr.
Art Sherrod Jr is “...a man who loves music, a man who loves art, respects the spirit world and thinks with his heart.”1 Art is equal parts heart and soul and it seems as if God gave him an extra dose of imagination that is clearly expressed in his music.
The creative part of Art was shaped by rich experiences, the people with the greatest influence in his formative years, exposure to a wide variety of cultures, religion, and the arts. These people, places and things advanced an innate curiosity, and have nurtured a strong desire for originality. This is a perfect narrative of Art Sherrod, Jr.’s life, a precise summary of his love for music and how his faith has been molded.
Art is a work in progress, and like the progression of life, he is the first to tell you that his taste in music varies greatly and continues to mature. The influence of growing up in Texas created an appreciation for everything from Country & Western, to Rock N’ Roll, Rap, Hip-Hop, to Gospel and of course Jazz! His love for music began in church, sitting alongside his amazing mother - who sang and played the B-3 organ, and father who sang in the male chorus. Even to this day, their devotion for singing continues to be very personal.
It’s as if Art knew from the age of 5, his muse would be the saxophone and his avocation would be creating music that inspires, heals, and praises God, music that speaks to the soul and makes us smile. During Art’s four-year tenure as a midshipman attending the United States Naval Academy, few people knew he was a musician. But shortly after his time at the academy, Art felt a strong desire to be creative again and step away from the more analytical side of life, which allowed him to start playing the saxophone again. Influenced by the likes of David Sanborn, Kirk Whalum, Gerald Albright, Kim Waters and other notables, he gained a greater appreciation and respect for strong melodies, grooves, tone and soulful expressiveness. To date, Art has had the opportunity to share the marque and/or stage with notables such as Natalie Cole, Angie Stone, Boney James, Kenny Lattimore, Howard Hewett, Phil Perry, Miki Howard, Chante Moore, Will Downing, Maysa Leak, Ann Nesby, Nick Colionne, Sheila E, Pete Escovedo, Brian Culbertson, Jeff Golub, Peter White, Alex Bugnon, Four80East, Loose Ends, Cuba Gooding Sr. and the Main Ingredient, Michael Henderson, Jean Carne, Norman Connors and many others.
In 2005, Art released his freshman project entitled “All 4 Love” which featured an incredible arrangement of the Hall and Oates mega hit, Sara Smile. In 2009 he was signed to Pacific Coast Jazz record label and soon after released his second project, “Seasons”. This project featured a laundry list of industry superstars like Will Downing, Chuck Loeb, Gerald Albright, Frank McComb, Tracy Hamlin, Marcus Johnson, U-Nam, Alex Al and others.
The success of the two projects were satisfying to Art on so many levels; however, he desperately wanted to give something back that truly reflected the totality of what defines him – his love for the Lord, love for his family and his passion to express this love through music. With the foundation of the previous projects, Art endeavored to record his first gospel project. With the support of his label, a cadre of uber talented and equally connected musicians that he could lean on to assist in creating his dream Gospel Jazz project, on January 15, 2016 “Intervention” was birthed, featuring the soulful sound of Incognito’s lead vocalist, Maysa Leak, on a very funky arrangement of Edwin Hawkins' Oh Happy Day.
“Intervention” has13 spiritually enriched tracks that highlight Art’s roots in Gospel, Jazz, R&B and Funk. By no means is “Intervention” your ordinary gospel jazz project, as it features some nontraditional songs like Frankie Beverly’s I Wanna Thank You and Sam Cooke’s A Change Gonna Come, in addition to some traditional gospel songs like It Is Well, He Looked Beyond My Faults, My Soul Has Been Anchored and a funky horn section infused arrangement of Walter Hawkins’ Going Up Yonder. The contemporary side of Art is revealed as he interprets Vashawn Mitchell's Nobody Greater and William McDowell’s I Give Myself Away, Chris Tomlin’s How Great is Our God featuring guitarist Alan Scott, How Excellent featuring world renowned bass guitarist, David Dyson, and Donnie McClurken’s mega hit Stand.
“Intervention” will keep you immersed from the first to the last song. With one listen, it is clear to see that Art Sherrod Jr’s passion is to connect to the heart of diverse audiences with an “Intervention” of love. He is a living testimony of Living from the Heart.i
1. Arie, India “I Am Ready for Love”, Acoustic Soul Motown 2001
i Living from the Heart is a partnership in association with the American Heart Association EmPowered To Serve campaign http://community.empoweredtoserve.org/home.