Peak Records

Peak Records

Peak Records is a record label that was co-founded by The Rippingtons leader and guitarist Russ Freeman & Andi Howard in 1994.

The early years, Peak founded as a production for Russ' group The Rippingtons in GRP Records. Now, Peak is a part of Concord Records.


*1994 Peak Records is co-founded by Russ Freeman & Andi Howard in GRP Records.
*1997 Peak transferred to Windham Hill Records.
*2000 Peak transferred to Concord Records.

Peak's first recording was "Time Slipping By" from Mark Williamson in 1994, and "Sahara" by Russ Freeman and the Rippingtons.

During the late 1990s, Peak became a fully self-sufficient independent label under Windham Hill/RCA, and the Rippingtons' released "Black Diamond" to commemorate the then 10-year anniversary of the group.

When the label became part of Concord Records, Peak signed saxophonists Paul Taylor and Eric Marienthal, and the song-stylist Regina Belle to the label as well as vocalist Phil Perry, who has since shifted to Shanachie.

In 2001 sophisticated vocalist Ms. Belle released "This Is Regina", which went gold and earned a Grammy nomination for Best Traditional Soul/R & B Vocal.

Early on, the label put out the Rippingtons' second live recording called "Live! Across America" in 2002 and an album from critically-acclaimed saxophonist Gato Barbieri called "The Shadow Of The Cat."

Former American Idol contestant LaToya London came out with an album on Peak Records in September 2005 called "Love and Life."

Others who have put forth product on the label include former Ambrosia vocalist David Pack and Denver-based contemporary jazz act Dotsero.

In 2004 another big hit in Contemporary Jazz, "Lazy Afternoon", came from the classy chanteuse Belle.The album made # 9 on the Billboard Smooth Jazz.

In the middle of the decade, Howard and the label became very aggressive in signing talent, bringing David Benoit in 2004, Lee Ritenour (2005), Gerald Albright (2006), Will Downing, Paul Brown, Norman Brown, Peabo Bryson and Marc Antoine (the last five all in 2007).

In 2006, Peak released the Rippingtons' "20th Anniversary Celebration," which also included a commemorative 25-minute DVD. The CD included new hit songs "Bingo Jingo," "City of Angels," "Costa Del Sol," and "Anything," which also featured singer/songwriter Brian McKnight.

During the summer of 2007, Peak Records' artists Paul Brown and Norman Brown both rocketed to No. 1 on the smooth jazz chart from Radio and Records magazine. The label also released the debut of Marc Antoine called "Hi-Lo Split."

For the fall of 2007, Peak Records will be releasing a new CDs from Eric Marienthal called "Just Around the Corner," Peabo Bryson's "Missing You" and Will Downing's label debut "After Tonight."

In the winter of 2008, new saxophone talent Jessy J released her debut recording on the label titled, "Tequila Moon." In addition, saxophonist Mindi Abair signed to a deal and her debut will came out in May 2008, a work titled "Stars."

In early 2008, Peak Records signed Grammy-nominated keyboardist and composer Jeff Lorber, with his debut expected to be released on Sept. 30, called "Heard That." Vocalist Leigh Jones also signed to the label, during a ceremony in mid-March.

In the latter stages of 2008, it was announced multi-talented Wayne Brady had joined Peak and would release his debut, "A Long Time Coming," on Sept. 16, which featured the hot radio single, "Ordinary."

Peak also signed acoustic guitarist/accordion player Peter White and early-1990s vocal supergroup All-4-One for projects to be released in 2009.

Two mainstays of the contemporary jazz record business also work behind the scenes for Peak in Mark Wexler and Deborah Lewow.

Current Artists Signed to Peak

* Russ Freeman
* The Rippingtons
* Mindi Abair
* Gerald Albright
* All-4-One
* Marc Antoine
* David Benoit
* Wayne Brady
* Norman Brown
* Paul Brown (musician)
* Peabo Bryson
* Will Downing
* Jessy J
* Leigh Jones
* Jeff Lorber
* Eric Marienthal
* Chanté Moore
* O'2L
* Lee Ritenour
* Paul Taylor
* Peter White (musician)

Former Artists Signed To Peak

* Gato Barbieri
* Regina Belle
* Braxton Brothers
* Dotsero (musicians)
* Glenn Jones
* LaToya London
* David Pack

2008 Release Schedule

* March 4 — Jessy J, "Tequila Moon"
* May 6 — Mindi Abair, "Stars"
* May 27 — David Benoit, "Heroes"
* June 17 — Chanté Moore, "Love The Woman"
* June 24 — Gerald Albright, Sax for Stax
* September 9 — Leigh Jones, Music In My Soul
* September 16 — Wayne Brady, "A Long Time Coming"
* September 30 — Jeff Lorber, "Heard That"
* October 14 — O'2L, Eat A Pickle

2009 Tentative Release Schedule

* February — Rippingtons, TBA (tentative)
* March — All-4-One, TBA (tentative)
* March — Peter White, TBA (tentative)

See also

* List of record labels

External links

* [ Official site]

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