About . . .
El Jaye Johnson
Smooth Jazz anyone? How about a little R&B, Blues, Funk, or Reggae? Like beach music or old school swing? Well just ask El Jaye and he will be sure to find you just the flavor you need. Leonard "El Jaye" Johnson is an extraordinary talent who has earned the title of "One-Man-Band. El Jaye has been seriously involved with music since age ten, and has developed a deep passion for music and the desire to help others to appreciate music’s many benefits. El Jaye wears many hats, both on and off the stage. On stage you will see him energetically bounce around from guitar, to keyboard, to trumpet to singing and dancing. And although he is an accomplished musician in his own right, he likes to be considered an entertainer, rather than just a musician. He thrives on captivating his audience through his music and his dynamic performances and tries to reach not just their feet, but also their hearts. He also wears the hat of a bandleader and has successfully assembled some of the best musicians around to include in his many productions. El Jaye is the founder and owner of EDJE Records, an independent record label, which is a subsidiary division of his business El Jaye Enterprises, based in Wilmington, North Carolina. Since it’s founding, El Jaye has worked as a songwriter, arranger, producer, engineer, promoter and educator. He has appeared in many venues, played in many bands, and is continuing to develop his craft. Career highlights include opening up for the smooth jazz super group Fourplay on June 7, 2002, at the BTI Meymandi Concert Hall in Raleigh, NC, and being one of the opening acts for the legendary Temptations Review featuring Dennis Edwards in March of 2001. More recently, El Jaye opened up for Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees The Lovin' Spoonful (May 10, 2008) and the classic R&B group The Manhattans (June 7, 2008).
El Jaye's latest promotional tour, Music In The Night, was a multi-faceted series of concerts covering artists as diverse as James Brown, Prince, Kem, and Alicia Keys, David Sanborn, Grover Washington, Jr. and Jeffrey Osborne. El Jaye is thrilled to be playing with so many great musicians on this tour and would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the musicians for their dedication and hard work to the goal of making others happy through music. For more information, visit www.ElJayeEnterprises.com.
Music has been a mainstay in the life of EDJE Records recording artist David Collins. David began singing at an early age in his hometown of Brooklyn, NY, which seems only natural when you look at his family. His father, the late David Collins, was an accomplished singer-songwriter. His mother, Lynette Collins, often filled the halls of home with smooth, melodious sounds. His older brother, Demetrius, and sister Ida also have natural vocal skills and frequently, the siblings would congregate to belt out renditions of their favorite radio hits. His influences are many and include great vocalists such as Donny Hathaway, Luther Vandross, Nat King Cole, and Sam Cooke. As David got older he decided to develop his natural gift further, for in 1981 David took private voice lessons under the direction of Steve Kensley, a voice instructor who had trained at the renowned Tuskegee Institute in Tuskegee, Alabama. For two years Kensley helped David shape his voice and mold it into a well-oiled vocal machine. Although polished, others did not notice his talents until 1994. In that year, David was asked to sing at a formal function in Raeford, North Carolina. On that occasion he impressed the audience with a breath-taking rendition of Jeffrey Osborne’s "Love Ballad," which still remains his signature song to this day. In 1999, he met El Jaye Johnson, a musician, singer/songwriter, and producer from Wilmington, NC. He was later signed to the EDJE Records label and in July 2002 David released his first single, "All Day, All Night". In 2003, he was included on the EDJE RECORDS sampler CD On The EDJE…, which featured him on the song "Hold On" as well as "All Day All Night". He went on tour with El Jaye Johnson and the Port City All-Stars and performed in some of North Carolina’s major cities, including Raleigh, Charlotte, Durham and Wilmington. In 2004, he assisted with the release of On The EJDE…Live, which showcases performances from the tour. Now residing in the Greater Atlanta metro area, he is continuing to develop his skills. He is currently writing new songs, which will appear, on a future album. Meanwhile, David actively promotes concerts and events in North Carolina and Georgia, including the concert series Music In The Night.
Tim was born Timothy Leon Shuford on August 15, 1982, as the youngest child of seven to Lester and Delores Shuford of Wilmington, North Carolina. He is a Class of 2000 graduate of E.A. Laney High School, stomping grounds of the legendary basketball sensation Michael Jordan. His singing background, though, is not what one may expect. His voice is reminiscent of one who could have spawned from the depths of gospel music in the Black church. However, this furthest from the truth. According to Tim, he began singing as toddler, but never really took it too seriously. Simply put, it was a hobby. That all changed, though, when in the summer of 2001, he approached EDJE Records owner, Leonard "El Jaye" Johnson, about singing in an upcoming formal event that El Jaye and his wife, Lisa were hosting in August of that year. After auditioning and a few rehearsals, El Jaye was convinced that he’d found a jewel…although a diamond in the rough. By August 4, 2001, the date of the event, the diamond had been polished, because on that night Tim unleashed a powerful show-stopping performance of B.B. King’s "The Thrill is Gone." His performance earned him a standing ovation and the new title "Baby B.B." After that momentous night, his hobby became a passion. Immediately he teamed up with El Jaye and went into the studio. His first recording was released as part of an EDJE Records CD, On TheEDJE…A CD Music Sampler which was released in 2003. He also toured with EDJE Records on their mini promotional tour On the EDJE which covered several major North Carolina cities, including Charlotte, Durham, Raleigh, and his hometown of Wilmington. He also sings at weddings and other events and has performed live at the Pleasure Island Seafood Blues and Jazz Festival in Carolina Beach, NC. His influences include Luther Vandross, Teddy Pendergrass, All Green, James Ingram, John Legend, Alicia Keys, and of course, B.B. King. He now lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with his wife Jenni. He is currently touring with El Jaye Johnson, David Collins, and the Port City All-Stars in the Music In The Night Concert Series.