Stuff Your Stocking with Saxophonist Tony Craddock, Jr.’s New, Genre-Blending Single
Explores “wintry mix” of gospel, hip-hop and jazz with new cover song
ALEXANDRIA, VA, Dec. 7, 2018 – Inspirational saxophonist Tony Craddock, Jr. today released an energetic and genre-blending single with his cover of the 2018 Dove Award-winning and Billboard Gospel #1 hit “Won’t He Do It.” The single is now available on major digital music platforms, including Spotify and Apple Music/iTunes, making a great “virtual stocking stuffer” for the holidays.
Originally recorded by gospel singer Koryn Hawthorne, Craddock posted a saxophone cover of “Won’t He Do It” on Instagram in September 2018, capturing the attention of the song’s writer, Grammy Award-winning Makeba Woods-Riddick (Beyoncé, Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez). Woods-Riddick immediately encouraged Craddock to officially release the cover.
“[Tony’s saxophone cover] warmed my heart the first time I heart it,” says Woods-Riddick. “It was like a warm cup of hot chocolate on a blustery winter day with caramel drizzle on top. This version takes you to an even higher level of inspired, hopeful emotions.” Woods-Riddick adds that Craddock’s cover is her favorite version of the song since the original.
The bold hip-hop influence in “Won’t He Do It,” with its steady synths and 808 trap beat, match the song’s unashamed celebration of God’s way-making track record. The production offers ample space for Craddock to explore its sonic landscape with melody and improvisation.
“This single is like a wintry mix in the best way,” says Craddock, the meteorologist and recording artist who’s built a reputation for connecting his music with the weather. “Instead of snow, sleet and ice, there’s gospel, hip-hop, and jazz. Rather than creating a slippery mess, the song’s faith-filled confidence hooks you.”
“Won’t He Do It” might come across as new musical terrain for Craddock, whose past releases are mostly within contemporary jazz and gospel, without any apparent connection to hip-hop.
“Genres are merely different dialects for communicating within the universal language of music,” explains Craddock. “I’m excited to continue expressing myself across musical boundaries.” Craddock adds that he has an ear for hip-hop, even sharing that “Convection,” the title track from his 2013 album, began as a hip-hop track that later morphed into a jazz composition.
This release caps off a year full of musical blessings for Craddock. He released his third album, H2O, which was produced by chart-topping jazz guitarist Ken Navarro and features Grammy-winning saxophonist and gospel jazz trailblazer Kirk Whalum on a soul-stirring arrangement of “Amazing Grace.” The lead radio single “Living Water” (featuring Navarro) aired on Sirius XM Watercolors, Music Choice Smooth Jazz, and more than forty radio stations in the U.S., U.K., and Poland, reaching #13 on the British Smooth Jazz chart. Craddock shared the stage with R&B legends Norman Connors and Jean Carne and performed throughout the Mid-Atlantic, including headlining Washington D.C.’s premier summer concert series, Jazz in the Garden. He also became an endorsing artist of the Fiberreed Carbon on alto saxophone, helping give him the firepower to made this single possible.
“I’m so grateful for God’s blessings exceeding my imagination,” says Craddock. “It feels right to end the year with a single that declares what God has done for me.”
Tony Craddock, Jr.’s discovery of smooth jazz on The Weather Channel’s “Local on the 8s” at age eight led him to the saxophone and eventually to Cornell University where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Meteorology. Now, he uplifts listeners with song titles, sounds and lyrics that connect his inspirational messages with emotions people experience from the weather, reaching more than 20,000 monthly listeners through Spotify and Pandora Radio. Craddock has released three albums, H2O, Convection and Christmas in the Air; and is an official artist-endorser of the Fiberreed Carbon on alto saxophone.
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