To understand the essence of Emerge, a group hailing from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, take one part gospel and then add the essence of smooth jazz to get a clear picture of what this group is all about. Together the sum of the whole is a unique style of music known as gospel jazz. With a sound that has the characteristics of any smooth jazz offering, the one difference between Emerge and other artists in that category is that this group's music is strictly inspirational and has a message. On top of that, they have taken themselves to a higher level of influence with the recording of their debut release entitled 'Inspiration.'
When Jeremy Scott and Kal Bergendahl formed Emerge in 2003 after having played together for many years, they had the idea of blending jazz, gospel and pop music together as one style. Both Jeremy and Kal were already highly evolved and talented musicians in their own right; however, they were presented with the task of getting other members with the right chemistry to complement their concept. What they came up with were guitarist Benny Ramos, drummer Dorsey Christian and Donte' Gillespie on piano, all of whom had the versatility and skill to help Emerge become the group they are today. The end result of all the ingredients is a style of music that not only inspires, it also entertains.
Although this CD is gospel-based, it is a gem of a recording. Collectively, Emerge has accomplished their original intent of combining two very different influences into one. Historically, jazz is etched in the annals of gospel music, but putting the two together has been a rather rare experience. 'Inspiration' is the culmination of those two influences and it is one of the finest recordings of its type heard to date.