Kirk Whalum

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Kirk Whalum


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Grammy® Award Winner and Global Recording Artist Kirk Whalum is ruminating on exactly when his eyes were opened to the big, beautiful world beyond his cloistered boyhood in Memphis, Tennessee. There, the minister’s son spent most of his time surrounded by family and friends, soaking up the soulful spirituality he found in gospel music in church. But inside, he knew he had the heart of a wanderer.

Humanité is unlike any album Kirk has ever made – the synergistic result of encounters made and relationships formed onstage and off with some of the finest recording artists from all over the world. Kirk’s collaborators on the album include Japanese jazz pianist Keiko Matsui, the young bass phenomenon Barry Likumahuwa, gifted singer/songwriter Grace Sahertian and global pop star singer/actor Afgan, all hailing from Indonesia; vocalist/guitarist Zahara, one of South Africa’s biggest stars; Kasiva Mutwa of Nairobi; and the veteran UK jazz vocalist Liane Carroll, long considered by cognoscenti as one of the finest voices in the genre.

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In a career spanning five decades, saxophonist Kirk Whalum has developed a sound that leaves an indelible imprint on the listener. Whalum is the recipient of numerous awards and acknowledgments for his musical excellence. A 12-time GRAMMY® Award nominee, Whalum won his first in 2011 for Best Gospel Song with Jerry Peters; he has also been honored with a Star on the Nashville Walk of Fame.