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YellowJackets Sign to Mack Avenue, Plan New Album

YellowjacketsThe contemporary jazz band Yellowjackets have just signed to Mack Avenue Records, and will be making their label debut in 2011 to celebrate the 30th anniversary of their first album. The release will be their 21st studio album, following 2008’s Lifecycle.

The current band lineup includes founding member and bassist Jimmy Haslip, keyboardist Russell Ferrante, drummer Will Kennedy and saxophonist Bob Mintzer. Since they began in 1981, the Yellowjackets have had 17 Grammy nominations and two wins.

Haslip, who is known for playing his bass left-handed and strung upside down, will be hitting the road soon with his supergroup side-project Renegade Creation, which features guitarist Robben Ford. Interestingly enough, the Yellowjackets actually began as the Robben Ford Group in 1977, but after contract issues, the group replaced him with a saxophonist and switched to their new moniker.