Jazzmatazz Volume 1 (An Experimental Fusion of Hip-Hop and Jazz) is the debut solo studio album by American hip hop recording artist Guru. It was released on May 18, 1993 through Chrysalis Records. Recording sessions took place at D&D Studios in New York. Production was handled by Guru himself, who also served as executive producer together with Duff Marlowe and Patrick Moxey.
The album combines a live jazz band performance with hip hop production and rapping. It features contributions from singers N’Dea Davenport, Carleen Anderson, Dee C Lee, French rapper MC Solaar, and musicians Simon Law, Branford Marsalis, Courtney Pine, Donald Byrd, Gary Barnacle, Lonnie Liston Smith, Ronny Jordan, Roy Ayers and Zachary Breaux, which adds diversity and originality to each track and gives the album a distinct jazz feel.
Guru, quoted in the album’s liner notes, talked about his natural affinity for both jazz and rap. “Jazz’s mellow tracks, along with the hard rap beat, go hand-in-glove with my voice”, he said.
The album made it to number 94 on the Billboard 200 and number 15 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums in the United States. In spite of the lagging American sales, Jazzmatazz, Vol. 1 was a commercial success in Europe, where jazz was much more popular in the 1990s. It peaked at No. 24 in New Zealand, No. 43 in Germany, No. 49 in Sweden, No. 58 in the UK, No. 67 in the Netherlands, and No. 139 in France. Its lead single “Trust Me” peaked at #34 on the UK Singles Chart and #105 on the US Billboard Hot 100. Its second single, “No Time to Play”, peaked at #25 in the UK. SPIN ranked the album at number 20 on their ‘The 20 Best Albums of 1993’ list.