Norman Connors

Norman Connors

 New York City, New York, USA
BandJazz

MULTI-FACETED PRODUCER AND DYNAMIC MUSICIAN NORMAN CONNORS

Biography

For Norman Connor's, music was a matter of destiny, not choice. Throughout the years, Connors has had a keen ability to discover and nurture new talent; instrumental in so many musician's careers. Michael Henderson, Glenn Jones, Norman Brown and countless others. Norman also discovered vocalists Dee Dee Bridgewater, Phyllis Hyman, Angela Bofill, Jean Carne; and produced a track for Stevie Wonder.

In 1976, Norman Connors and Michael Henderson (long time bassist with Miles Davis) created R&B's most sampled "Quiet Storm" classics "You Are My Starship"; a 1976 chart-topping single. The duo has returned with Connors latest CD "Star Power"; the multi-platinum selling producer's Shanachie label debut and first recording in seven years; a momentous occasion that joins Connors with vocalists; Grammy Winner Peabo Bryson; Howard Hewett, Antoinette Manganas; and Christopher Williams (from the film "New Jack City"), known for the R&B hit "I'm Dreamin"; bassist (and vocalist) Michael Henderson; saxophonist Marian Meadows; keyboardists Herman Jackson and Bobby Lyle, among others.

Born in the City of Brotherly Love, Norman was immersed into Philadelphia's rich jazz and R&B tradition; by taking drum lessons at the Earle Theater on early Saturday mornings; then staying for movie and entertainment shows, which often featured Duke Ellington and Count Basie. Watching Sarah and Ella at an early age made him fall in love with great voices. Norman's dream was to be a drummer for John Coltrane. At age 16, Norman travelled to New York City with nothing more than $20 and his drumsticks; and later ended up with a full scholarship to the Julliard School of Music. As fate would have it, Norman performed with "Trane" at the famed Pep's club in Philly when Trane's musician got arrested; and Norman ended up playing three nights in a row.

Early on, Connor's music was more fusion jazz, but later he brought in the R&B element. "The Quiet Storm" with Michael Henderson's "You Are My Starship", has been sampled by artists from LL Cool J to Snoop Dogg; and shows Connors ability to spawn an entire genre of music that fuses the world of jazz, R&B and hip hop.

In 1972, Connors signed with Buddah's Cobblestone record label; and recorded multi-platinum selling albums; including "You Are My Starship". By the late 70's, Clive Davis signed Norman to Arista Records with the debut "This Is Your Life"; then Norman went to Capitol Records in the late 80's; then to Motown's jazz label, Mojazz in the 90's. Today, "Star Power" is the debut CD for Shanachie Records. Norman Connors has worked with Pharoah Sanders, Jackie McLean, Archie Shepp, Sam Rivers and Jack McDuff. Connors has produced Angela Bofill, Phyllis Hyman, Peabo Bryson, Howard Hewett, Lonnie Liston Smith and Bobby Lyle. Norman relates "throughout my career, there have been certain singers that I have always wanted to work with"; and on the new CD, he gets to "do just that".

Discography

Star Power:

Used To Be
The Sweetest Taboo
Walk On By
Rock With You
Stormin' Norman
You Take My Breath Away
Shades of Brown
I Waited All My Life For You
Reach For The Sky
Thinkin'
Adore

You Are My Starship
Valentine Love