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To Grover With Love CD
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Jason Miles shows his appreciation for the highly respected saxophonist Grover Washington with this excellent CD titled "To Grover, With Love". This is not your ordinary tribute CD filled with mere exercises in nostalgia, but one filled with standout playing by flautist Herbie Mann, guitarist Russ Freeman and saxophonist Michael Brecker amongst others. Miles has selected thirteen songs, including several of Grover Washington's best-known songs, and added solo showcases that flow smoothly with endless nuances of colour and emotion. These versions do full justice to Grover's timeless compositions and songs by Marvin Gaye ("Inner City Blues") and Bill Withers ("Just the Two of Us" and "Summer Chill"). From the guitar lead of Russ Freeman on "East River Drive" to the soulful saxophone wailings, this CD dusts off, shakes down, and hands you some searing soul, scorching riffs, and serious funk. The instrumental arrangement that is clearly a refreshing change is Herbie Mann's flute playing that Miles substituted as lead instrument on the Washington saxophone legacy "Mr. Magic." To Grover, With Love clearly ranks among Miles' best tributes that include his phenomenal hits that showcased the music of Wayne Shorter and Joe Zawinul on "The Music of Weather Report" and Ivan Lins' compositions on "A Love Affair: The Music of Ivan Lins".
Collective personnel: keyboards, drum programming, arranger - Jason Miles; vocals - Chaka Khan (13), Regina Belle (7), Sounds Of Blackness (3); tenor sax - Michael Brecker (14), Richard Elliot - (9), Everette Harp (6), Ronnie Laws (3), Steve Cole (7); alto sax - Jay Beckenstein (10), Gerald Albright (1); soprano sax - Dave Koz (5), Dave Mann (12), Paul Taylor (11); flute - Herbie Mann (4); trumpet - Randy Brecker (14); electric &/or acoustic piano - Joe Sample (14), George Duke (7), Tom Schuman (4), Greg Philinganes (13); organ - Joey DeFrancesco (14); guitars - Jeff Mironov (2,5,9,11,14), Dean Brown (1,3,6,10), Nick Moroch (1,6); Russ Freeman (2), Mark Whitfield (8), Peter White (11); bass - Will Lee (1,2,5,12), Gary King (3,6,11,14), Francisco Centeno (9); drums - Buddy Williams (2,5,7,9,12,14), Richie Morales (3,6,11), Steve Ferrone (1); percussion - Pablo Batista (1-3,5,7,11) Cyro Baptista (6, 11,13,14); drum programming - Steve Wolf (4); plus string section (13).
Top Customer Reviews
Nearly all the cuts on this masterpiece CD are great interpretations of the originals.The resulting songs will not let you down.What you get with this CD is a breathtaking collection of Grover Washington remakes by respected players,and the vocalists are the big bonus !!
First,The Sound of Blackness provide 'collective vocal power' to 'Inner City Blues'-Make me Wanna Holler',and as always,they shine ! Next,REGINA BELLE(with Steve Cole and George Duke) brings her impressive style to 'Just The Two Of Us',and after hearing the song,you are left wanting MORE 'jazz' from the song stylist !!Grover would LOVE this version !!! This track,which is that one that work the best,made me once again appreciate this classic and started me wonder why she doesn't cover more jazz standards (Regina,where are you?).
While I've never been a fan of the Rippingtons,Russ Freeman's 'East River Drive' is a real delight.
I must admit it was a thrill to hear Herbie Mann doing 'Mr.Magic' and doing it well.
Finishing off the disc is the remarkable 'Loran's Dance' led by the Brecker Bros. and Joe Sample.
Thank you, Grover, for your music !
And thank you,Jason Miles,the inventor of the project.
If you like smooth contemporary jazz,this tribute is essential for your collection.
Each track is a winner!
It's a testament to his talent that Gerald Albright, Dave Koz, and Everette Harp, playing three different horns--alto, soprano, and tenor, respectively--all sound exactly like the G-Man.
His sway over the three younger players is so dominant on many of their own recordings, particularly Albright's, that the licks that are nods to Washington are indistinguishable from the originals.
All of the instrumental tracks on this 14-song star-studded set play like Grover Washington Jr.'s greatest hits, with outstanding arrangements by the producer, keyboardist Jason Miles.
On a couple of numbers, the arrangements are stronger than the performances.
Tracks that work best are Regina Belle, Steve Cole, and George Duke doing "Just the Two of Us"; Herbie Mann working out on "Mister Magic"; and the Brecker Brothers teaming up with Joe Sample and Joey DeFrancesco on "Loran's Dance."
Ronnie Laws and Richard Elliot, two players not influenced by Washington, also offer very interesting performances.
A must buy !!
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)
Here's the list of CDs I want u to cop right after u pick this up:
1. Norman Brown- Just Chillin'
2. Ronny Jordan- At Last
3. Streetwize- Smooth Urban Jazz
4. Miles Davis- Doo-bop
5. Rick Braun- Best of Braun
6. BWB- Groovin'
7. Will Downing- Sensual Journey
8. George Benson- Absolute Benson
9. The Crusaders- Rural Renewal
10. Impromp2- You're Gonna Love It
11. Quincy Jones- Back on the Block and Q's Jook Joint
12. Alicia Keys- all albums
13. Guru- all Jazzmatazz albums incl. the Gang Starr classic albums (NO MORE MR. NICE GUY, STEP IN THE ARENA and DAILY OPERATION)
14. Barry White- All-Time Greatest Hits
15. Usher- Confessions
16. Kanye West- The College Dropout
17. Outkast- Speakerboxx/The Love Below
the whole list goes on and on.