Shawn “The Saxual One” Raiford, is one of the most appreciated musical talents currently rising in the Sacramento area music scene. Either playing alone or with his band, “Saxual Chocolate”, Raiford’s engaging ability on the alto saxophone combines his enthusiasm, showmanship, and capacity to entertain with just the right combination of popular hits and original music.
From the outset of his musical career in 1999, when Raiford first picked up the saxophone for his late grandmother’s 75th year church anniversary, he learned the art of playing before discerning audiences that appreciate live music. Since then Raiford has worked tirelessly to perfect his crystal clear sound and develop the gift of music that lay dormant within him until it was awakened as a young adult.
“You Don’t Know My Name”
Raiford was first inspired and instructed by Claude Roberson, Minister of Music at Mt. Calvary Baptist Church in Fairfield, Calif. During his musical journey, Raiford has benefited from the tutelage of some very capable musicians including keyboardist Reggie Graham and saxophonists Andrew Beal and Garrett Perkins. “The Saxual One” creditss David Sanborn, Gerald Albright, Harold Rayford, Jermiane Mondaine, Rosie Haynes, Kenny G., and Grover Washington Jr. as a few of his many musical influences. Not content with simply remaining a one-dimensional musician, Raiford is currently learning to play piano and is studying music theory and composition at American River College in Sacramento.
Raiford is also working on his first studio album to be titled “Saxual Seduction”. The album is scheduled for release in the summer of 2013. In addition to five original compositions, Raiford plans to include his distinctive interpretations of five previously recorded Billboard smash hits. Raiford anticipates his smooth jazz renditions of Stevie Wonder’s hit, “I Wish,” and Regina Belle’s hit, “Baby Come to Me,” will be released as singles before the end of 2012.
Raiford leads the band Saxual Chocolate, which consists of 10 versatile musicians with the capability of providing just the right music for any occasion. Before he carefully selected the combination of talented musicians to create the sound he was looking for, Raiford gained invaluable experience through years of playing live with a number of bands.
Raiford has been featured at numerous venues in the Sacramento area over the years. He performs as a solo artist as well as stars with his band, Saxual Chocolate. In addition to playing at countless private functions, “The Saxual One” has been a regular opening act for Daunte Burks’ Funny Friday Comedy Show and is frequently invited to perform with T-Mo Entertainment at Guild Theatre events and other venues throughout the Sacramento area.
Raiford is equally comfortable commanding an audience’s attention front and center on stage as he is at enhancing any event with background music. “The Saxual One” individually tailors his set lists for each occasion. He draws from a wide range of selections from his rapidly growing repertoire of contemporary jazz, R&B, gospel, rock, and popular music selections.
If you intend to include live entertainment at your next event, contact saxophonist Shawn “The Saxual One” Raiford before you make a final decision. He guarantees to provide just the right combination of musical entertainment to turn any memorable occasion into an unforgettable experience.