The historic newly reactivated jazz label Okeh has revealed that it is to issue a solo piano album by the highly rated jazz and classical pianist from the Dominican Republic, Michel Camilo, to be called What’s Up, on 13 May.

This latest album by the Grammy winning band leader follows on from his 2011 trio album Mano a Mano.

Camilo will appear at Ronnie Scott’s in London just ahead of release on 10-11 May with his trio of Cliff Almond and Lincoln Goines.

Camilo in the mid-1980s debuted with Why Not? and his albums Michel Camilo, On Fire, and On the Other Hand were widely played on jazz radio stations in the States, where he had earlier studied at Julliard in New York city.


Bob James and David Sanborn are also to release Quartette Humaine on Okeh, an acoustic quartet album with James Genus and Steve Gadd, the label has intimated. That’s all set for a 20 May release in the UK.

James and Sanborn worked together with Gadd, plus Marcus Miller and Al Jarreau among others, on hit album Double Vision, a landmark release in the early years of smooth jazz.

Before those releases there’s a various artists album on the blocks called Dalla in Jazz, a tribute to the Bologna-born Italian singer/songwriter Lucio Dalla who wrote monster hit ‘Caruso’ covered by artists as disparate as Maynard Ferguson and (in a multi-million selling version) Luciano Pavarotti.


Dalla in Jazz features trumpeter Paolo Fresu recently touring in the UK with the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra and whose Devil Quartet album Desertico has just appeared. Saxophonist Stefano di Battista, and singer Maria Pia De Vito, known for her work with both Huw Warren and Colin Towns also appear on this tribute to Dalla, who died last year. It’s released on 6 May.

But first there’s a new release date for A Different Time, John Medeski’s solo piano album now confirmed for 9 April.

Big Sur, the much anticipated new Bill Frisell album, will be released by Okeh on 3 June. SG

Michel Camilo, top; Bob James with David Sanborn, middle; and Paolo Fresu, above

Further Okeh background as the story unfolded:

For Ronnie Scott’s dates: