Nick Colionne


Monday, April 21st, 2014 7:11 AM

Smooth Jazz 4/21/14

Review by Denis Poole

"When Nick Colionne´s splendid new CD ´Influences´ was previewed by the radio single ´Got To Keep Moving´ it was clear from the get-go that he was on to another winner. It´s a number that has all the vitality that one has come to expect from this superstar of the genre but more than that is totally in keeping with the mood of the entire album which Nick uses to take musical stock of the people and things that have helped drive his career. Indeed, with six tracks written and produced by Pieces Of A Dream stalwart James Lloyd, ´Influences´ is as tight a collection as you will hear anywhere this year."

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Thursday, March 27th, 2014 1:47 PM 3/27/14

Truly slammin´ right from the start, smooth guitarist Nick Colionne lets his energetic style and Epiphone axe do the talking on the opening track, "Slammin´," of his latest release, Influences, Nick Colionne CD, "INFLUENCES," due out on April 1 — and that´s literally just the beginning of this satisfying project.

With loads of playing, writing, and production help from Pieces of A Dream keyboard wiz James Lloyd, the two collaborate on a heavy piece of work that is bound to impress. Along with contributions from songstress Maysa and some cool mixing by Darren Rahn, the way up is a clear path for Colionne here.

Maneuvering between his Epiphone and the bluesy grit of his Gibson, Colionne captures the essence of the cool cat from the windy city in a nutshell.

The mid-tempo and suave charmer "Got to Keep It Moving" is a tune (already available as a single) that I´m sure his beloved departed manager and friend Carol Ray would greatly appreciate, knowing that´s exactly what she would want him to do. In fact, I´m sure he makes her proud throughout this project.

Simply put, Colionne, with Influences, remains a viable force well in his groove zone — which just happens to be the same zone in which many of us live, as well. One solid effort. – Ronald Jackson

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Thursday, March 27th, 2014 10:30 AM 2/22/14

Back in 2011 the wonderful ´Feel The Heat´ signaled Nick Colionne´s debut on the Trippin N Rhythm label. In addition it marked another significant artistic step forward for a performer who just keeps on getting better. Now he is back with "INFLUENCES" that will be released, April 1 (also on Trippin N Rhythm) and if the first single, ´Got To Keep Moving´, is anything to go by then he is on to another winner.

Indeed the premise on which "INFLUENCES" is based is an exciting one in that Colionne is using the project to take musical stock of the people and things that have helped drive his career. ´Influences´ is a musical journey of self re-discovery which offers a palate of moods and flavors born of life experiences, challenges and the effect of the people, past and present, that have helped shape his sound.
Thursday, March 27th, 2014 10:29 AM

Well into his third decade of making the strings sing with his very own sweet Chicago soul, guitarist Nick Colionne digs deep as he takes musical stock of the people and things that helped propel his career and fully establish his place as one of the real cats, a cat that finds connection with his audience in a way that not many can.

"INFLUENCES" is a musical journey of self re-discovery, offering a palate of moods and flavors born of life experiences, challenges and the effect of the people past and present that have helped shape and mold his sound. Music can be the ultimate healer not only for the creator but also those of us who seek the escapism. Nick gets this and you immediately feel him from the opening strains as he provides lift with this feel good collection of new sides. His chops have never been more exacting, his melodies more exhilarating, his hooks more infectious.

Collaborating again with the great James Lloyd and inviting Maysa on the journey gives "INFLUENCES" just the right amount of spice and pop, but in the end it is all about Nick as he bears his soul though this collection of musical chapters in this his latest book, one written with his strings and sings of the places he s been and the places he still has to go.

The lead single "Got To Keep It Moving" is certain to fire up his legions of fans and find its rightful place atop the radio charts. Never one to take what he has for granted, Colionne knows he has been blessed with a great gift and he will continue to share it as he connects with his fans through live performance in 2014 and share "INFLUENCES" in a way that only he can.
Saturday, December 6th, 2008 1:29 PM


".....most fans don't realize that Colionne has spent more than a decade working with kids as young as five years old, not only for the sake of jazz but also for the simple joy he experiences by impacting a young person's life in a positive way. "

In an insightful interview, "Nick Colionne: Making a Difference for the Future", Mikayla Gilbreath discusses in depth with Nick how he feels about mentoring and the effect it has on him and the kids he works with. Remarkably, Mikayla herself is one of the young people affected by Nick and others like him - she is 15 and the youngest member of the prestigious Jazz Journalists Association.

>> read the full interview at

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2008 7:30 PM


"With a style that stretches across urban and contemporary, Nick Colionne's star continues its meteoric rise so that "No Limits" is rightly the phrase of the day!!"

Ted Hasiuk, JazzLynx and Cafe Jazz Radio, Canada's Smooth Jazz Connection

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Wednesday, October 1st, 2008 4:24 PM


I"t´s been awhile since I´ve attended such a high energy show, and a long while since I´ve witnessed one with a standing ovation for every single song."

review by Anne Aufterheide,

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Thursday, September 11th, 2008 1:00 PM


September 7th, 2008 Edition #492

Jazz Lynx and Cafe Jazz Radio, Canada's Smooth Jazz Connection

From a teen who would paint on a mascara moustache to look older when he played, to an artist who continues to ride the crest of his popularity, it's now Nick Colionne's turn to reap the rewards of many years of devotion to his craft. After his '94 debut and several years wherein he enjoyed modest success, it was nearly 10 full years before Colionne would crack the smooth scene - but crack it he did and in no small way. Following the success of Just Come On In, his 4th release, which spawned one of the major hits for the year in High Flyin', Nick hit pay dirt again with Keepin' It Cool, a project that led to his selection as the "International Instrumental Artist of the Year" at the 2007 Canadian Smooth Jazz Awards. Now with his much-anticipated follow-up, his debut on Koch Records, and his 6th over-all, Colionne sets "no limits" on his rise to stardom. Hard grooving and soulful, from that effort we have the title track and a tune that suggests there is no bound to the charismatic performer's potential !!

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Monday, August 11th, 2008 1:00 PM


Cool Jazz, for a Hot Summer! Nick Colionne is raising the bar, and it has "No Limits".

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Sunday, August 10th, 2008 1:00 PM


Nick Colionne's guitar playing has been compared to George Benson and from style and tone standpoint you can hear why. Cuts like 'No Limits', the mellow 'The Big Windy Cat' and the ultra fast 'Godfather J' are uptempo funky/smooth gems. 'Steppin Back' has that steppers feel, whilst 'Headin Wes Before Dawn' takes a melodic route in paying homage to Wes Montgomery. There are 3 vocal cuts and ...his crooning style works on the laid-back 'Melting Into You'. This is a fine exhibition of Smooth Jazz guitar.

Sunday, August 10th, 2008 1:00 PM


This three-day festival came to an end with an appearance by Chicago's own, national recording star, Nick Colionne. Nick, always dapper, brought along his sidekick of eight years, bassist Dave Hiltebrand, in addition to drummer Jabari and local standouts, Mike Logan on keys and Buddy Fambro, another longtime collaborator, on guitar.

(Colionne's) two plus hour set was magnificent. Nick was debuting his new CD entitled "No Limits" and highlighted several selections from this recently released recording. Colionne thrilled the large finale crowd with several "duels" with the ever-present bassist Hiltebrand. It simply was the highlight of the evening. Nick has a huge Chicago fan base and they seemed to enjoy every moment from the talented guitarist/vocalist. He was the perfect option to close this festive three-day affair.

Reviewer: James Walker, Jr.

Sunday, August 10th, 2008 1:00 PM


Gifted guitarist Nick Colionne´s latest release on the Koch Records label is entitled No Limits. It´s ample proof that one of smooth jazz´s premier road warriors can also deliver in the recording studio...Nick´s lethal combination of vocal and guitar punch is impressive.

Reviewed by Randall Parrish

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Tuesday, July 15th, 2008 1:00 PM


Guitarist and vocalist Nick Colionne's new recording is packed with an exciting blend of jazz, funk, R&B and a touch of the blues.

With the addition of his rich baritone voice, the fresh tracks on NO LIMITS incorporate the many musical influences (including Wes Montgomery) Colionne has had throughout his career...His passionate baritone voice is yet another reason to stay tuned to this amazing asset in his seemingly limitless repertoire.

But in the long run, it's Nick Colionne's guitar prowess that takes this CD to the next level and makes it highly entertaining, romantic, bluesy and definitely without limits.

Reviewed by Paula Edelstein

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Tuesday, July 1st, 2008 1:00 PM


Nick Colionne is back again, stronger and better than ever. Undoubtedly Nick is an in-demand live performer with a repertory from R&B, contemporary jazz to blues and soul. The experience of his (hundreds of) live dates is mirrored on his new album.

NO LIMITS starts with power and energy with the title track, and Nick's second home is the chords of his beloved guitars. The heartfelt ballad "Melting Into You" opens the view on Nick's second talent, his matured vocals. He has a similar timbre to the late Jon Lucien.

Nick Colionne is a trademark for top quality.

Reviewed by H.B. Huelsmann, Publisher

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Tuesday, July 1st, 2008 1:00 PM


Nick Colionne - a name that automatically evokes a smile...and the knowledge that you are about to have a party! Nick's latest release, NO LIMITS, does not disappoint. With a terrific blend of R&B, blues, instrumentals and vocals, Nick puts his unbridled touch on each and every song.

More so than any of his previous recordings, this CD is Nick Colionne -in passion, in emotions, and delivery. If you have ever been to one of his concerts, you feel the same groove throughout this CD.

Aptly titled, this album proves that there are no limits to where he can go..this CD is an amazing compliation of varied tempos, instrumentals, and vocals. With talent like Nick's, the sky's the limit.

Reviewed by Bonnie Schendell

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Tuesday, July 1st, 2008 1:00 PM


Guitarist Nick Colionne likes to mix it up on his smooth jazz CDs, and he's certainly done it with the winning NO LIMITS. Colionne has a fluid style that is pleasing to the ear whether he's playing jazz or funk, ballads or uptempo tunes, all of which he does here. He certainly gets to show off a range of styles, all anchored by his delightful hooks and soloing.

The title track "No Limits", for example, offers a killer melody and inspired soloing...he's certainly given his audience reason to cheer on tracks that should go over well in live shows, such as the bluesy "The Big Windy Cat", "On The Edge" and especially "Godfather J", Colionne's tribute to James Brown.

One constant that Colionne returns to on his CDs is a selection of vocal tunes, which highlight his deep and seasoned voice. Finally, another constant - a tribute to (Wes) Montgomery - is realized with "Headin' Wes Before Dawn". The tradition lives on.

Reviewed by Brian Soergel

Monday, June 16th, 2008 1:00 PM


Carol Archer, in her R&R column Going For Adds, says ... "Filed under 'not your grandmother's smooth jazz,' Nick Colionne's first single -- the title track from his audacious label debut for KOCH, NO LIMITS -- swings with the best; a first-rate tune that merits top consideration ... "

Sunday, June 15th, 2008 1:00 PM


Those who have seen him play live will have been blown away by the sheer energy that Colionne injects into his music. It's an element of his persona that comes right out of his hometown of Chicago and he brings all this and more to his excellent up-coming release NO LIMITS.

Already described as both unique and varied, NO LIMITS is Colionne's way of pushing the artistic envelope into areas that transcend genres or styles of play. Right from the get-go he uses the mid-tempo title track "No Limits" to demonstrate the energetic infectious (style) that he has made his own.

Colionne...cranks the groove to produce another great example of his special high octane, contemporary jazz which, in every respect, is a joy from beginning to end.

Reviewed by Denis Poole, Publisher

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Tuesday, June 10th, 2008 1:00 PM


The debonair, slick paced, cool guitar sensation Nick Colionne swings his grooves your way with another jazz staple for the airwaves. It's smooth, laidback, funky & enjoyable to say the least.

From the easy, contemporary strokes of the strings to a chilled, simply composed R&B grooved track...(the CD) presents what the ever gifted musician Nick C. is all about.

There are "NO LIMITS" when it comes to the bluesy, contemporary jazz style of Guitar player Nick Colionne."

Reviewed by Publisher Terrill Hanna

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Sunday, June 1st, 2008 1:10 PM


Nick Colionne´s set was absolutely incredible and will probably be voted the best performance of the festival. Colionne can easily be considered one of the best showmen in the industry, based not only on his ability to connect with the audience but also because of his extraordinary talent as a musician. Playing everything from contemporary jazz to smooth jazz to blues to rock and roll, Colionne had the audience in the palm of his hand. Colionne´s pairing of storytelling, humor and superb musical talent make him a musical tour de force. His show is an "experience" that is unrivaled in the smooth jazz industry.

Review by the Jazz Gypsy on