The art of cool has been wayward since the likes of Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Mel Tome, Miles Davis and John Coltrane. As represented by these legends of jazz, cool is a state of mind, an attitude of confidence and strength in one’s craft. Jazz artist Tony Hightower encompasses a new age cool that is part homage and part regeneration. Being not only an admirer but a student of the genre; Hightower’s passion and direct connection to jazz music allows him the advantage of properly emulating the timelessness of the classics without the kitsch while still injecting his own interpretations.
His latest release, “The New Standard” is a nod to the sounds of big band and vocal jazz, a sonic bridge between contemporary and purist forms. A project he has long desired to tackle, Hightower’s approach to The New Standard is all about maintaining the integrity of jazz’s deep, expansive and historical roots: neat vocal styling, multi-piece instrumentation, scat and swing elements. Enlisting The HC3 and The Good Time Brass Band, Hightower reinterprets four popular songs and arranges six original recordings, blurring the line between modern and classic.