LaPlace’s father & son jazz musicians make history again

Published 3:35 pm Saturday, June 24, 2023

LAPLACE — Father and son Quintin Gerard W. and LEMEK Yisrael once again crossed paths on the Contemporary/ Smooth Jazz Top 20 Chart this week, this time claiming the top two spots.

Both residents of LaPlace, the two men made history on the Smooth Jazz Network in October 2022 when Quintin’s “Broken Promises” and LEMEK’s debut single “Co-Motion” climbed onto the Top 20 charts.

Earlier this week, they made history once again on a grander scale by becoming the first father and son to grab the top two spots on any Billboard chart, in any category. LEMEK took the No. 1 spot on Billboard’s Smooth Jazz Airplay with his song “Groove Central” featuring Ryan La Valette, while his father was close behind with “On a Roll” in the No. 2 spot.

According to Quintin, this achievement is fascinating given the fact that he and his son are not on the same record label and have built their music careers totally independent of one another.

The father-son duo was in for another sweet surprise when a FedEx delivery arrived this week with a beautifully framed photo of the MediaBase chart from June 19 depicting their songs in the No. 1 and No. 2 spots. Quintin learned the framed chart was a gift from Eugene Radcliff, an old friend he had not seen or heard from in 35 years.

“You never know what the day will bring when you stay true to yourself and stay positive,” Quintin said in a social media post.

Quintin and LEMEK shared their respective musical journeys with L’OBSERVATEUR in late 2022.

Growing up in St. Charles Parish, Quintin was always fascinated by records — the way they spun inside the player and the different record labels bearing the names Motown, Stacks and Warner Brothers. By the age of 8, he decided music was not only something he wanted to do, but something he wanted to win at by diving into the business side of the industry. He moved to Los Angeles in 1989 and hit the ground running, playing music at L.A.’s Nucleus Nuance in front of Arsenio Hall, Clint Eastwood and other big-name celebrities. His saxophone idol, Kenny Garrett, became a mentor who guided him through the bumps and bruises of the music industry. He had the opportunity to tour alongside Jeff Lorber and play with some of the best in the industry.

Quintin pulled away from the music industry after LEMEK was born in 1999, and he later found himself tasked with caring for his aging father. After his father passed away in 2013, Quintin had newfound time to get re-acquainted with music on a deeper level.

Meanwhile, LEMEK was finding his own passion for music, fueled by backseat rides in the family car where he listened to contemporary jazz and R&B hits from Charlie Wilson, Michael Jackson and Stanley Jordan. His first instrument was a gifted drum set, but after his family moved to LaPlace and settled into a smaller home, forcing the drums to go into the attic, he fell in love with acoustic and electric guitars.

After years of being a bedroom guitarist, LEMEK gained courage and stage presence when he started playing live at jam nights around New Orleans. Three months later, he was invited to be part of a band that frequented the BMC Balcony Music Club on Decatur. Last August, he teamed up with Trippin ‘N’ Rhythm records to take his career to new heights.

To support Quintin Gerard W. and LEMEK, visit quintingerardw.com and lemekyisraelmusic.com.