By Diaa Bekheet
Recently I had the chance to talk with American singer, composer and songwriter Jason Paul Curtis who has just released his debut album.
It’s a holiday album right on time for the holiday season in the United States. I don’t remember many other artists whose debut album is a holiday collection but Jason told me about some of the background.
“This is an album that I have been putting together since, probably, January, It’s not necessary a Christmas album, but it’s one with the intent that you can listen to it before Christmas, after Christmas, throughout the whole year,” he added.
Jason’s new album, Lovers Holiday, is a mix of originals and classics. He wrote five of the 12 tracks including this title song.
In our interview, Jason told me that the title cut on “Lovers Holiday” is essentially about a couple who have children. Jason and his wife have three children and he explained, “You are providing Christmas for your children, but you’re also trying to get back together as a couple to spark some romance. So the song is about…sitting back after the kids are asleep and the guests have left, the party’s over…and now it’s time for us to have a glass of wine.”
On the new album, the talented jazz vocalist is backed by his Swinglab trio on some tracks and also accompanied by Swing Machine, an 18-piece big band, on other tracks. Jason says that he was influenced by the voices of Nat King Cole, the Manhattan Transfer, and Harry Connick, Jr.
Another song, “Blue Friday,” is about a young man dragged along to his partner’s foray into the maddening crowds of a Black Friday department store sale, which is the day after Thanksgiving in the United States.
Jason Paul Curtis was born and raised in Texas. He pursued theater, film and opera in Houston, performing several productions with the Alley Theater, the Galveston Island Outdoor Musicals and the Houston Grand Opera Chorus. But Jason told me he switched to Jazz because he felt he could communicate better with people in a way…that he couldn’t produce in any other genre.