Kenny G, who already holds the record for biggest-selling Christmas album, has set his sights on Valentine’s Day.
The saxophonist has signed with Starbucks Entertainment and Concord Records, which will release his “Rhythm and Romance” on Feb. 5 It is his first album of Latin love songs.
Between 1982 and last year, Kenny G recorded 18 albums for Arista. His last album, “I’m in the Mood for Love: The Most Romantic Melodies of All Time” debuted at No. 37 when it was released in mid-November, but has yet to top 250,000 in sales. His “Miracles: The Holiday Album” from 1994 has sold 7.1 million copies.
Beginning in 1987, Kenny G revived the field of instrumental pop as commercially viable, as he had nine consecutive studio albums land in the pop top 10. Like nearly every other act in the Starbucks camp — Joni Mitchell, Sergio Mendes, Paul McCartney, Ray Charles’ final disc — his music is aimed at an adult marketplace that no longer shops at CD and record shops. “Rhythm” will be available at Starbucks outlets and standard retailers.
On “Rhythm and Romance,” Kenny G is backed by his longtime pianist Walter Afanasieff, who alos produced the disc, and Alex Acuña on drums, Ramon Stagnaro on guitar, Enrique Martinez on accordion, bassists John Pena and Nathan East, and percussionists Michito Sanchez and Paulino Da Costa. Chile’s Barbara Munoz and Camila supply guest vocals.
He is currently booked to perform, after the album is released, in multiple cities in Alaska, Hawaii, Colorado and Florida.