5 Essential Chris Botti Tracks

Indian Summer
The opening track from Botti’s A Thousand Kisses Deep album – “Indian Summer” was a breath of fresh air when originally released in November 2003. With the popularity of the smooth jazz genre beginning to wane, Botti solidified his spot in the jazz world with a distinct crossover sound, pleasing smooth jazz aficionados with a steady accessible groove, and straight-ahead jazz fans with his intricate phrasing paired together with a warm tone, and intricate arrangements.

When I Fall In Love
Marking the beginning of his unbroken string of studio albums to reach #1 on the Billboard Jazz chart, When I Fall in Love finds Botti breaking out of the smooth jazz mold, delivering a straight ahead jazz album surrounded by a top notch backing band layered over a lush bed of strings. The title track is a prime example of Botti’s new direction, dropping drum machines in favor of real instruments, but retaining the tasteful lyricism that earned him his initial success. Botti himself stated of When I Fall in Love, "This is my statement record. This is the one that I'm absolutely most proud of."

Good Morning Heartache
Botti’s follow up to When I Fall in Love, To Love Again the Duets builds upon the sonic framework of its predecessor by adding a number of solid guest vocalists from his longtime friend Sting to Michael Bublé, Jill Scott, and Steven Tyler. Perhaps the funkiest track on the album is “Good Morning Heartache”. Driven by the Fender Rhodes playing of Billy Childs (a frequent collaborator of Botti’s), Botti creates a beautiful melodic interplay between himself and the sensual vocals provided the versatile Jill Scott.

Nominated for Best Pop Instrumental Album at the 2010 Grammy Awards Chris Botti in Boston was recorded live at Symphony Hall in Boston. The live performance was also released on an acclaimed DVD in 2009. One of the standout tracks “Emmanuel” (featuring violinist Lucia Micarelli) was also nominated for best instrumental arrangement.

You Are Not Alone
Taken from his most recent album Impressions, “You are Not Alone” was originally written by R Kelly, and made famous by Michael Jackson in the 90s (off of his album HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I). Botti’s version once again demonstrates his ability to skillfully adapt a pop song into an instrumental piece, retaining the spirit of the original, while infusing his own style to paint recognized material in a new light. Botti’s cover is performed as a duet with guitarist Leonardo Amuedo.