Don’t miss the 16th year of An Evening of Smooth Jazz happening Friday, July 24 at 7:30 pm at the Holt High School Margaret Livensparger Theater, 5885 W. Holt Road in Holt., Michigan.
BMRW Promotions and 496 West will host GRAMMY Award winning saxophonist Kirk Whalulm.
Soulful, passionate, stirring…these are the words most often used to describe Kirk’s music. Forged from his Memphis, (TN) gospel roots and his 1980‘s initiation into the thriving Houston, TX nightclub scene, Kirk’s big, rich tenor sound is unmistakably his. The 80’s were highlighted by Kirk’s stepping out of his blossoming sideman role and forming his own band. It was there that Kirk ultimately developed both his “voice” and songwriting in the crucible of the local club scene––especially at a rooftop club called Cody’s.
Houston is also where jazz pianist Bob James “discovered” him and brought him on tour, which led to five successful albums with Columbia Records, including Cache, Kirk’s first #1 album. Kirk and Bob also received a Grammy nomination for their collaboration album, Joined at the Hip.
After moving to Los Angeles, Kirk became an in demand session player for top artists like, Barbara Streisand, Al Jarreau, Luther Vandross, Larry Carlton, Quincy Jones and most notably, Whitney Houston, amongst many others. It is his sax is heard on Whitney’s mega-hit, “I Will Always Love You.”
His phenomenal hit album —For You—was released on Warner Bros and it is perhaps his most successful project of over 25 solo recordings to date. His eclectic and much lauded, Gospel According to Jazz series, (Chapters 1, 2, 3 and 4) is impressive.
Kirk is also a member of the popular soul/jazz group, BWB, which features Kirk as the “W” of the group with Rick Braun (trumpet) and Norman Brown (guitar).
An ordained minister, Kirk has earned a Masters of Art in Religion. It’s in this spirit that he serves his community in various ways when his touring schedule allows. There is also his daily fifteen minute podcast, Bible In Your Ear (BIYE), where he invites listeners along as he reads through the Bible in a year. In addition to music and ministry, Kirk has a passion to educate young, aspiring musicians and is currently engaged as a music professor at Visible Music College in his hometown of Memphis.
Kirk is the recipient of numerous awards and acknowledgements for his musical excellence including three Dove Award nominations, an NAACP Image Award nomination and has won two Stellar Awards-Gospel music’s highest honor. A twelve time Grammy nominee, Kirk won his first Grammy award (2011)for Best Gospel Song (“It’s What I Do”––featuring Lalah Hathaway) alongside life-long friend and gifted songwriter, Jerry Peters.
Kirk has a sound that is uniquely his; it is a sound that leaves an indelible imprint on the listener.