Kansas City, Missouri-born baritone Kevin Mahogany has recorded and performed alongside jazz and blues legends, including T.S. Monk, Marlena Shaw and Al Jarreau. He has recorded multiple CDs of his own since his debut, Double Rainbow, in 1993. On May 8, the versatile singer and former teacher at the College of Music in Boston and the University of Miami will thrill Neapolitans with his powerfully rich vocals and broad stylistic range covering ballads, bop, blues and jazz. The critically acclaimed master of scat headlines the annual Alive in the World concert and auction at Artis—Naples to benefit the Foundation for the Developmentally Disabled.
The Alive in the World concert is presented by the Trust for the Advancement of Responsible Artists, founded by Naples attorney Robert Goldman. The shows benefit a charity while shining a spotlight on outstanding musical artists. This year’s concert will raise funds to support the Foundation for the Developmentally Disabled, whose mission is to ensure that those with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families have the support they need to be full members of our community. (239-919-0408)
NI: What musical projects are you working on?
KM: I’m releasing a new CD. It’s a few tunes that were recorded live in Kansas City with some incredible musicians who were put together for a concert, and I am recording a newer project in May, a second album of love songs and ballads.
Who inspired you in pursuing your passion?
As far as musical influence, it was the Motown period when I was born and grew up, and I enjoyed that music. But the largest influence was my mother. She was not a musician but believed strongly in the arts as part of a well-rounded education.
What recordings are on your personal playlist right now?
I have a few thousand recordings on my playlist, from Aaron Copland in classical to Johnny Cash in country, plus jazz, funk, pop, R&B. I listen to a variety of styles … as well as international recordings from Europe, Russia and Africa.
What are your thoughts on doing this benefit concert in Naples?
I am always interested in supporting organizations that offer assistance to those who have problems helping themselves.