Crosstown Arts presents Kafé Kirk with Kirk Whalum and special guest Eric Darius in Crosstown Theater.
Sunday, March 10, 2024
Box office opens at 5 pm | Doors open at 5:30 pm
Show begins at 6 pm
Tickets: General Admission $59 (plus fees)
Join Grammy-winning saxophonist Kirk Whalum for Kafé Kirk, an ongoing jazz series in Crosstown Theater featuring musical and spiritual collaborations with special guest artists. This iteration’s performance will feature jazz saxophonistEric Darius.
With his iconic, signature jump and unrivaled crowd-captivating energy throughout his world-renowned live performances, Billboard chart topping saxophonist, songwriter, and performer, Eric Darius, is breaking the mold of modern Jazz. His latest and boldest venture to date, Unleashed, is a testament to his ever-evolving artistic vision, fearlessly pushing all musical boundaries while innovatively fusing Jazz with elements of R&B, Hip-Hop, Pop, and more.
Now, with eight highly acclaimed albums to his name, Eric continues to be a dynamic force on the music scene. To date, he has racked up five No. 1 Hit Singles and 17 Top 10 Radio Hits on Billboard’s Contemporary Jazz Chart. He was SESAC’s Top 10 Jazz Artist of the Year in 2015, Citril Starz Awards’ Best Jazz, Saxophonist, Composer, Producer & Musician of the Year in 2017, and most recently was selected the Rehoboth Beach Jazz Festival Artist of the Year for 2022.
From sharing the stage with GRAMMY® Award-winning artists such as Prince, Mary J. Blige, Jamie Foxx, David Foster & George Benson to name a few, making TV appearances on FOX’s The X Factor and TNT’s Mob City, running his own SagiDarius Music label, to serving as annual host of the San Diego Smooth Jazz Festival, Mexico Jazz Experience, & Paris Smooth Jazz Festival, Eric’s impact on the music industry is undeniable. Determined and steadfast in making a difference through music education in the schools, Eric Darius stands as a beacon of unparalleled talent and dedication in today’s world of entertainment.
Soulful, passionate, stirring…these are the words most often used to describe Kirk’s music. Forged from his Memphis, Tennessee, gospel roots and his 1980s initiation into the thriving Houston, TX nightclub scene, Kirk’s big, rich tenor sound is unmistakably his. The ’80s 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. It was also in Houston 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. As well, Kirk and Bob 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’s his sax heard on the mega-hit, “I Will Always Love You.” Kirk soon followed that career high point with his phenomenal hit album released on Warner Bros. Records, For You, perhaps the most successful of over 25 solo recordings to date; others include his eclectic, and much lauded, Gospel According to Jazz series, (Chapters 1, 2, 3 and 4). In addition to his many solo projects, Kirk was 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).
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.