If you love the flute, you can count on Alexander Zonjic’s Jazz Café, a track from his Playing it Forward album released in 2020 that’s well worth looking at again given the ‘pandemic’ caused lots of cool music to be overlooked.
The multi-talented funky Canadian flutist and popular Detroit media personality’s album takes us on an engaging, whimsical, yet heartfelt journey that’s all at once lyrical and dreamy, tight and funky.
The collection features mostly Jeff Lorber co-penned and produced originals with sparkling re-imaginings of classics by the likes of Bob James, Adele (via Aretha Franklin), Nat “King” Cole and others.
Beyond, Zonjic’s tasteful blend of breezy melodies with virtuosic runs, the project gives Zonjic an opportunity to finally cover an influential Jethro Tull classic, and includes one of the last compositions and performances from guitar great Chuck Loeb.
Play it Forward came 11 years after Doin’ the D, an album paying dynamic homage to the music and magic of Detroit, Zonjic got back in the throwback R&B groove with the release of another infectious, high-spirited valentine to his beloved adopted hometown.
A native of Windsor, Ontario (immediately across the Detroit River), Zonic is a 15-time Detroit Music Awards winner with deep and multi-faceted ties to and influence on the city.
He has been a multi-media personality since he began hosting the morning radio show at the longtime smooth jazz station WVMV in 1998 – a popular stint that ran through 2010. Since 2016, he has hosted “Alexander Zonjic from A to Z,” a weekly half hour hybrid TV show on WADL TV-38 (airing Sundays at 10pm with an encore at 1:30AM mixing live concert elements with special guest live interviews.
Over the years, as Zonjic puts it, he has morphed from “that flute guy from Canada” into the owner of a veritable cottage industry as the artistic director and producer of more than 10 annual festival events in the region and philanthropist under the umbrella of his Hi-Falutin Music. .
Believing in Gandhi’s words that the “best way to find oneself is to lose oneself in the service of others,” Zonjic and Hi-Falutin work with numerous large charity organizations in the Detroit area.