“Eric Essix is, besides the obvious jazz force of nature and ambassador, a true Foot Soldier for all the things that matter to me. This puts him in a very distinguished yet lonely category.”
- Kirk Whalum
“Eric Essix is my ideal of the consummate artist; constantly and consistently delivering impeccably soulful musicianship though his beautiful compositions, all while maintaining full time integrity.”
- Joey Sommerville
“Eric Essix - master guitarist , bandleader, concert promoter and probably one of the easiest cats to work with in the recording studio. I take pleasure in calling him my brother in music.”
- Frank McComb
Over a period of more than 34 years and 28 full length album releases, Eric Essix has maintained a steady flow of new music that continues to push the boundaries of contemporary jazz. Following the success of his Songs From The Deep project, Eric recently released his 28th album entitled STRiDE on his Essential Recordings label, again distributed by Lightyear Entertainment/Virgin Music/UMG.
The album features nine original compositions written by Eric and a lush arrangement of the Bill Withers' classic, Ain’t No Sunshine, featuring fellow Birmingham, AL native and American Idol winner, Ruben Studdard.
STRiDE showcases a diverse mix of songs ranging from danceable, funk instrumentals, sultry ballads, hints of blues and traditional jazz textures and, as always, a very intentional nod to Eric's gospel roots. "This album is an extension of the Songs From The Deep record in a sense. I made a conscious effort to build on what I did with that project compositionally and maintain the same kind of vibe. Musically, it just felt like a good place to explore a while longer."