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TSJR’s Featured Smooth Jazz Artist

A profile of our selected smooth jazz artist of the month

Because we appreciate the talents and hard work of all of the many artists in our beloved smooth jazz genre, TSJR has made it a standard practice to highlight and honor one artist each month who has established himself or herself as an integral part of the smooth/contemporary jazz “engine.”

This month, we honor:

Jazmin Ghent – A True Representative of the C-Jazz Next Generation

By now, many in the c-Jazz world have heard at least a bit of one of the newest, most exciting additions to the genre in saxophonist Jazmin Ghent. She has dazzled audience throughout the country and abroad since coming into full view just a few short years ago. Let’s take a closer look at this sensational young lady and her rapid presence on the genre’s radar screen.

Born Jazmin Deborah Ghent in Heidelberg, Germany and currently residing in central Florida, Jazmin became interested in music at age 5 when she began taking piano lessons. Being chosen as the Sunday school pianist at age 8, she often practiced with the adult musicians and church choir members.

After being introduced to the saxophone in middle school, she progressed to becoming the church pianist and saxophonist. Jazmin won numerous All State Honor Band awards. Once in high school, she discovered her passion for performing and teaching and began playing professionally in the Huntsville, Alabama area where she was raised.

The young saxtress won national awards such as the NAACP’s ACT-SO competition and was chosen to perform at the NAACP closing ceremony in Orlando, Florida in 2008. She was chosen for three consecutive years as 1st chair tenor saxophonist for the All State Jazz Band. Jazmin was offered a full tuition scholarship in 2009 to Berklee School of Music as well as Florida State University School of Music. She attended Florida State University and was lead tenor in the symphonic band and performed with the jazz band/ensemble in several venues.

Jazmin graduated in May 2013 and received a degree in Music Education. Following a performance on Bobby Jones’ Gospel Show in June 2013, she was offered a scholarship to attend Tennessee State University in Nashville, Tennessee and received her Master’s degree there. During the following year, she captured 1st place in the 2014 Smooth Jazz Cruise “Show Your Talent” competition.

The personable young saxtress is quick to point to her spirituality as key to her success, as well as the support she’s received from her parents, Carl and Deborah Ghent (“for believing in me, seeing my vision, and nurturing my love for music”).

As one of the hottest national smooth jazz and gospel recording artists today, Jazmin enjoys accolades from the likes of renowned c-jazz saxman Euge Groove who has said of her, “She provides much needed real deal youth in the genre. She definitely knows how to bring on the ‘heat’” (referring to the hit single from her latest release The Story of Jaz).

In addition to “Heat,” Jazmin has one other Billboard topping single, “Compared to What” from her 2015 Boss release, and has recorded three 3 CDs. “Heat” remained on Billboard Charts for over 20 weeks.

Voted as 2017’s best New Smooth Jazz Artist, the saxtress has performed at various major festivals throughout the country and in Europe. In addition to performing, she teaches music in Polk County, Florida to elementary students in grades K-5.

According to Art Good of Catalina Island’s JazzTrax festival, “Unknown Jazmin Ghent was one of the best finds the festival has ever uncovered. She outsold all 30 stars of smooth jazz in the JazzTrax store, selling more CDs than anyone. She had stage presence, a show, and she could play!”

Jazmin’s latest CD, The Story of Jaz, includes collaboration with flutist Kim Scott, keys giants/producers/composers James P. Lloyd, Phillippe Saisse, and Jeff Lorber. The CD was recorded and produced by Ron Jenkins and Euge Groove at Euge Groove’s “The Groove House.” Stay tuned. This young “engine” has just begun to get revved up. – Ronald Jackson