"As a sideman, I have a lot of experience helping artists to realize their own musical visions," says Eddie Manion. “But this project is about what moves me, and about the sounds and emotions that are in my head and heart. When I listen to it, it sounds like me.”
Coastin’ 'In is the new solo album by world renowned saxophonist Eddie “Kingfish” Manion. The album’s TK instrumental tracks showcase Manion’s distinctive work on tenor and baritone sax, as well as his sublime arrangement skills. The resulting album demonstrates why Manion has earned his status as one of music’s most in-demand horn players.
The New Jersey native’s resume includes a prodigious number of albums and tours with an extensive array of artists. Prominent among Manion’s musical associations is his longstanding relationship with Bruce Springsteen playing a prominent role on many of his studio and live albums and concert tours. Manion currently serves as horn director and arranger in longtime collaborator Stevie Van Zandt’s band Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul. It was Van Zandt who gave Manion his longtime nickname “Kingfish.” Eddie recently recorded two Little Steven and the Disciple of Soul albums ‘Soulfire” in 2017 and “Summer of Sorcery” in 2019 and the just released Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul Summer of Sorcery Live! At the Beacon Theater in 2021. Manion launched his career in 1976 as a member of Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes / Miami Horns. He soon toured the world with Diana Ross, recorded the first Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul album “Men Without Women”, toured with Springsteen on his Tunnel of Love Express Tour in 1988, joined the Robert Cray Band in 1991 recording Shame + A Sin which was nominated for best contempory blues album at the 35th Annual Grammy Awards (1992), recorded Bruce Springsteen’s “We Shall Overcome” on Columbia records in 2006 as a member of the Seeger Sessions Band and toured with Bruce Springteen and the E Street Band on the Wrecking Ball and High Hopes tour from 2012 to 2014.
Other career highlights for Eddie include performing at the White House for Special Olympics with Eric Clapton, Jon Bon Jovi, BB King and Tom Petty and the Heatbreakers. Performing with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band at Super Bowl XLIII in 2009. Writing horn arrangements for Bruce Springsteen’s segment of the 25th Anniversary Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Concert at Madison Square Garden in 2009 with Darlene Love, Sam Moore and John Fogerty and performing with Sir Paul McCartney twice in his life once with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band at Hyde Park London in 2012 and once with Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul at the Roundhouse also in London in 2017
Coastin' In emphasizes Manion’s expansive musical vision, which incorporates several decades’ worth of R&B, soul and rock ’n’ roll history.
Beyond the Manion-penned title track the album features TK instrumental reworking of some of the artist’s favorite songs, including distinctive readings of such enduring classics as Steve Winwood’s “Roll with It,” where he combines this great song with Jr. Walker’s (I’m a) Roadrunner, Georgie Fame’s “Yeh Yeh,” and the haunting Hollies ballad “He Ain't Heavy He's my Brother.” He also makes effective use of a string quartet on the Beach Boys classic “God Only Knows” and the Ray Charles/Hoagy Carmichael favorite “Georgia On My Mind.”
“I started this project at the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020, and it kept me focused throughout,” Manion explains. “When the lockdown began, I was lost as to what to do to keep me playing and focused. Eventually I decided that the best thing I could do was to record the best album I could..”
Manion recorded the self-produced Coastin' In with several of his Disciples of Soul bandmates, as well as a set of the best Pittsburgh-based jazz/R&B studio players, cutting tracks at Shorefire Recording in Long Branch, NJ, and at the Vault Recording Studio in Pittsburgh, PA where he tapped the engineering talents of Joe DiMaio and Grammy-winner Jimmy Hoyson, respectively. The album was mixed by Jack Daley and Marc Ribler at Dug Deep productions in Asbury Park, NJ and is released on Eddie’s new record label Kingfish Mars Records.
Coastin’ In showcases Manion’s trademark wide-open, R&B-inflected “Texas Tenor” sax-style.
“The sound of the saxophone is something I have loved my entire life, and the quest for that particular sound is what keeps me going,” Manion states. This album was a joy to record, and I loved every minute of it. I didn’t want to stop, and I can’t wait to start recording another one.”
written by Scott Schinder