A Sad Day for Smooth Jazz

(Wayman Tisdale: Sales slump?)

Amid the extensive coverage today of Circuit City and its plan to shut down all of its stores, one side of the story has gone underreported: the deletrious impact of this development on the nation's smooth jazz artists.

Circuit City has long been a major source of sales for the smooth jazz industry. The fact that a Michael McDonald DVD was on permanent rotation in the electronics store in The 40-Year-Old Virgin was no accident, but a piece of verite naturalism.

Julie Porter, a publicist at the Concord Music Group, home of artists such as Spyro Gyra, Gerald Albright, Najee, and Boney James, notes in an email to the Weekly that Circuit City "was definitely a key partner and at one time could be as high as 25% of market share for some of our smooth jazz records." Though that number had been declining recently, she says.

In short, smooth jazzers are going to need your support more than ever. This could well be time to revive a mayoral initiative that the Weekly reported on more than a year ago.

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