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Kevin Toney

Kevin Toney

BiographyToney was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan where he attended the prestigious Cass Technical High School. He was performing with the groundbreaking jazz-fusion group The Blackbyrds when he received his B.A. in Composition and Jazz Studies from Howard University. Seven albums were recorded with the group, three of which were certified gold. Many of their hit songs including "Rock Creek Park" and the Grammy nominated "Unfinished Business" were written by Toney.In the years between the Blackbyrds and his subsequent career as a solo recording artist, Toney was a conductor and arranger for recording and performing artists including: James Ingram, Patti Austin, Michael McDonald, Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis, Jr., Carl Anderson, Edwin Hawkins and Isaac Hayes. He also served as conductor and arranger for productions of: Ain’t Misbehavin’, Five Guys Named Moe, Sophisticated Ladies, Harlem Suite, Wild Women Blues (featuring Linda Hopkins) The Magic Of Motown: A Tribute To Barry Gordy and Atlanta. He has also recorded and/or performed with Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Frank Sinatra, Stevie Wonder, Seal, Annie Lennox, Shirley Caesar, Ray Charles, Ray Parker Jr., Pink, Kenny Burrell, Nancy Wilson and O.C. Smith to name a few.Although Toney released his first solo recording, Special K, in 1982, his career as a solo artist really began to take off in 1994 with the release of Lovescape, which yielded two major smooth jazz radio hits in "Kings" and "Aphrodisiac". His follow-up was the 1995 release of Pastel Mood, which featured Carl Anderson, and subsequent releases of: Extra Sensual Perception, Strut, Sweet Spot, 110 Degrees and Rising and Retrospectives, which was released in 2006. The 2002 Winter Olympic Committee selected the Strut CD as part of its official music. Toney’s collaboration with Unwrapped producer Tony Joseph on the compilation Def Jazz, a smooth jazz interpretation of rap classics, was released in 2005 on Def Jam Records.Toney’s current project titled A Grateful Heart is his first solo piano recording. Toney recently released the Kevin Toney Collection Volume 1, which includes 24 of his most popular recorded compositions, and scored a full length feature film titled Kings of the Evening.Kevin Toney is a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.ReceptionUrban Network says “Kevin Toney has proven himself to be among the most masterful and versatile keyboardist of his generation, playing with a technical proficiency that is at the absolute peak of the contemporary jazz game.” Billboard Magazine notes “Toney's piano skills and ear for melody set him apart from the pack and make him enjoyable and engaging." “Throughout his career as a pianist and composer, Kevin Toney has continually demonstrated why he is one of contemporary jazz’s brightest and most inspiring talents. - 'Kenny Burrell', Jazz Guitar Legend, Director UCLA Jazz Studies Program “Toney’s intricate compositions and sophisticated piano playing are evidence of his rich and solid jazz, blues and gospel roots” - Jazz Times “ To my amazement, Toney’s magic tap dances gracefully from corner to corner of the almighty ivories” - Abyss Jazz Magazine


Hot tracks

Various Artists (Steppers Step Ya Ass Off) - Hey Young World

Hey Young World


Hubert Laws & Kevin Toney - Bring The Pain

Bring The Pain