GRAMMY® Award-nominated songwriter, producer, and guitarist extraordinaire Cory Wong has announced the premiere of Cory and the Wongnotes, an inventive new online video series showcasing live performances, original sketch comedy, special guests, interviews and much more. Created and hosted by the seemingly inexhaustible Wong, the eight-episode series premieres today exclusively via Wong’s hugely popular YouTube channel, with new episodes set to debut each and every Thursday.
“I’ve always been a fan of late-night TV,” says Wong, “specifically late-night talk shows. But as a musician, I’ve selfishly wanted more focus on the music and the musicians! So I figured I’d start my own show that does it…For years I have worked as a bandleader and music director for other projects, but doing it for my own show has been a real pleasure. Beyond the musical aspect, it has been a creatively energizing endeavor to write and act in sketches, and to take the wheel as host of the show. This is the most ambitious and creatively fulfilling project for me. I brought in some of my best friends and musicians that I know to create together and to interview them about their process.”
Cory and the Wongnotes heralds the upcoming release of Wong’s first new album of 2021. CORY AND THE WONGNOTES arrives on Friday, February 5. The album – which sees Wong backed by an 11-piece big band featuring a full six-member horn section along with vocalists Cody Fry and Antwaun Stanley – includes the ebullient first single, “Coming Back Around (Feat. Cody Fry),” which is available at all DSPs and streaming services this Friday, January 15.
A true renaissance man and artistic raconteur, Cory and the Wongnotes sees Cory Wong continuing to make his mark as a prolific, once-in-a-lifetime artist and personality. 2020 saw the Minneapolis-based musician presenting a remarkable series of eight original albums, an extraordinarily diverse range of releases spanning an equally stunning selection of sounds, styles and musical approaches. The year kicked off with the jazz-funk odyssey, ELEVATOR MUSIC FOR AN ELEVATED MOOD, which ascended to the top 20 on Billboard’s “Contemporary Jazz Albums” chart upon its January release. Wong continued to unfurl new music throughout 2020, including the GRAMMY® Award-nominated MEDITATIONS, an improvised collaboration with longtime friend and musical associate Jon Batiste, a pair of contemplative acoustic records (TRAIL SONGS: DUSK and TRAIL SONGS: DAWN), and multiple live recordings like LIVE IN AMSTERDAM, the latter of which features the Netherlands’ GRAMMY® Award-winning Metropole Orkest and reached the top 10 on Billboard’s “Classical Crossover Albums” chart. Wong’s astonishing run of new releases culminated with THE STRIPED ALBUM, a typically masterful marriage of myriad musical genres highlighted by such special guests as Kimbra, Tom Misch, Joe Satriani, and six-string soul icon David T. Walker. Indeed, THE STRIPED ALBUM was met by widespread critical applause, with American Songwriter declaring it to be “a slamming 10-song record filled with funky rhythms, precise and infectious guitar riffs, in the pocket tight performances, horn-fueled jams and stop on a dime breakdown sections. This record pops through the speakers and begs you to not move your body.”
As if all that weren’t enough, 2020 also saw Wong presenting his popular podcast, Wong Notes (presented in partnership with Premier Guitar), as well as creating the innovative Archetype: Cory Wong plugin for Neural DSP Technologies and debuting such instructional vlogs as On The One and How To Musician with Cory Wong, both streaming now at Wong’s official YouTube channel.
Known far and wide as a restless creator and visionary musician, Cory Wong has been hailed since 2017 for his distinctly original approach and dazzling live performances. From his work as a member of Vulfpeck and The Fearless Flyers, to collaborations with Dave Koz and guest appearances on CBS’ The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and Minnesota Public Radio’s Live From Here with Chris Thile, Wong has consistently proven himself a masterful guitarist and impossible-to-categorize artist adept at blending a variety of genres into his own unique sound. 2017 saw Wong make his solo debut with CORY WONG AND THE GREEN SCREEN BAND, followed by 2018’s THE OPTIMIST and 2019’s MOTIVATIONAL MUSIC FOR THE SYNCOPATED SOUL, both of which reached the Top 20 on Billboard’s “Jazz Albums” chart.
CORY WONG AND THE WONGNOTES marks the first album in what will undoubtedly be another busy year for the indefatigable Wong. An array of new music releases are slated through 2021 – for updates and more, please visit www.corywongmusic.com.