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The New Cool: Robert Walter, The Groover Next Door

Regularly clad in a sports jacket with elbow pads and a casual, button-up shirt, Robert Walter comes off more professorial than soul jazz wild man. Don't be fooled, he's been laying down grooves and heating up dance floors on a variety of (mostly) electric keys for more than 20 years.

A founding member of the Greyboy Allstars, Walter has a sound that's earned him airplay on nearly every episode of The New Cool so far. Aside from the all-star band, his 20th Congress, and other solo albums, he's made himself at home grooving with funky New Orleans drummer Stanton Moore's trio.

A decade ago, he released a soulful collection of Christmas tunes called "In a Holiday Groove." You'll hear a pair from this release, as well as an early Greyboy Allstars jam on this week's The New Cool.

You'll also want to stay connected to knkx for a Christmas boogaloo from England's Big Boss Man, and some jingle soul from Italy's Samuele Pagliarani, alongside our usual ultra-modern jazz improvisation from Snarky Puppy with singer Jacob Collier, eight-string guitar of Charlie Hunter, Robert Glasper's recent soundtrack to "Miles Ahead," and much more. Merry... make that GROOVY Christmas from The New Cool!

The New Cool airs Saturdays at 3:00 p.m. The program is hosted by Abe Beeson and produced by KNKX Public Radio in Seattle, Wash.