Sounds of A & R aka S.O.A.R. is the brainchild of vocalist April May Webb and Trumpeter Randall Haywood. Partners in music and life, April and Randall have come together creating a distinct sound that fuses aspects of Swing, Cool, Hard Bop and Avant-garde.
April May, hails from Newton, Kansas. Her unique vocal approach draws from a wide range of influences such as Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan and Dinah Washington. She sings with a rustic warm tone and strong articulation. April May was a featured vocalist in a televised Christmas and Summer Special with PJ Rasmussen and the Boardwalk Jazz Band. The special aired nationally on several networks including ABC, NBC and CBS.
April May, hails from Newton, Kansas. Her unique vocal approach draws from a wide range of influences such as Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan and Dinah Washington. She sings with a rustic warm tone and strong articulation. April May was a featured vocalist in a Televised Christmas and Summer Special with New York City’s Boardwalk Jazz Band in 2017. The special was broadcasted nationally on ABC, NBC, and CBS. April May is also the first female to graduate from The William Paterson University Jazz Education program where she studied under the leadership of the late Mulgrew Miller.
"Enter April May! A young singer who is as naturally talented as she is cultivated…She is at once, lyrical and soulful. April is definitely one to watch out for – a singer that can go in almost any direction. The future looks brighter because of the promise of April May. My Joyful expectation..!"
Florida Native, Randall Haywood is a graduate from the Juilliard School of Music. Randall utilizes the trumpet with great emotional expression. His sound continues to look towards the future, while paying homage to Fats Navarro, Clifford Brown, Clark Terry and Miles Davis. Randall became the youngest person ever to perform with the prestigious Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. Randall's associations with Wynton Marsalis and Marcus Roberts have enabled him to perform with jazz legends such as: Art Farmer, Jackie McLean, Frank Foster, Milt Grayson, and Ed Thigpen.
"…..This is Randall Haywood…. His sound is Clifford Brown, Clark Terry and Woody Shaw all wrapped up in one…."
Sounds of A & R have been making their mark in the New York scene, wowing audiences on stages such as The Birdland Jazz Club and the legendary Apollo Theater. In their self-titled debut album, the listener will be taken on an artistic journey through and array of colors in modern jazz. While standards like 'September in the Rain' and 'Midnight Sun' will be reminiscent of the Clifford Brown and Sarah Vaughan classics, S.O.A.R. finds their unique sound with wonderfully crafted arrangements of their own original compositions such as 'Love's Dilemma' and the beautifully earthly 'Nobody Knows'. Jazz Lovers and pop fans alike are sure to enjoy the fresh approach S.O.A.R. renders to pop classics such as 'All I Do' and 'Blackbird'. Sounds of A & R will certainly take you on a journey that will leave and indelible impression on all music lovers.
Between April and Randall, they have performed in the North Sea Festival (Netherlands), Pori Jazz Festival (Finland), Vitoria Jazz Festival (Spain) Vienna Festival (Austria), Prague Festival (Czechoslovakia), Istanbul Jazz Festival (Turkey), Bern Jazz, Blues Festival (Switzerland), Beiteddine Art Festival (Lebanon), Newport Jazz Festival (Rhode Island), Jazz at Lincoln Center (NY), Birdland (NY), Dizzy’s Coca Cola Club (NY), The Jazz Gallery (NY), Thee Mid Atlantic Jazz Festival (Maryland). Bird's Basement Jazz Club (Melbourne, Australia), Vitoria-Gasteiz Jazz Festival (Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain), and San Javier International Jazz Festival (San Javier, Spain)
Vocalist April May Webb and Trumpeter Randall Haywood