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Magic Hour

Magic Hour

9 Mar 2004
4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 9 Mar. 2004
  • Release Date: 9 Mar. 2004
  • Label: Blue Note Records
  • Copyright: (C) 2004 Wynton Marsalis Enterprises, Inc. under exclusive license to Blue Note (R) a registered trademark of Capitol Records, Inc.
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 1:01:25
  • Genres:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 200,190 in Albums (See Top 100 in Albums)
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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
There's a bit of everything on this and all of it good. I'm a devoted Marsalis fan and maybe biased but still recommend you buy it for the opening track alone. Dianne Reeves' voice is superb and Marsalis sounds like he's playing it for fun. Add the lollopping rhythm underneath and it's guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

The rhythm and feel of You and Me, Free To Be and Big Fat Hen remind me of Citi Movement and The Marciac Suite with bits of hand-clapping and Ali Jackson sounding a lot like Herlin Riley (not a bad thing in my book).

Bobby McFerrin is excellent on Baby, I Love You. The band isn't too bad either.

The Sophie Rose-Rosalee wouldn't sound out of place on Standard Time Vol.3.

The title track is a bit odd but grows on me. Good riffs interspersed with bits of Bumblebee kinda stuff and chilled out piano in the middle.

Overall, a nice variety of styles and quality playing throughout. Thoroughly enjoyable.

Most annoying, however, is the copy control rubbish. What's the point? Record direct onto mp3 player, back to the PC to split and tag the tracks and back to the mp3 player again. Job done.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Bought it as a present and it is delightful to listen too - well engineered sound... the music and the artists are great!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.9 out of 5 stars 23 reviews
28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Welcome to Blue Note 12 Mar. 2004
By Benjamin Roesch - Published on
Format: Audio CD
Wynton's Blue Note debut album, The Magic Hour, is a sweet, simple affair full of catchy melodies and tasteful playing. None of the performers (Marsalis, Ali Jackson-drums, Carlos Henriquez-bass, Eric Lewis-piano) are bending their talents to the breaking point, but that's not really the thrust of this album I don't think. It's a groove record that invites you in with open arms and says, "when jazz feels good, it's better than any musical feeling you can find, and we want you to feel good, so let's go." Marsalis is a careful composer and his melodies here are deliberately simple, the focus being on the rhythmic interplay that can be achieved between gifted musicians like the quartet he's assembled. Ali Jackson especially stands out--check out his playing on "Free to Be" and "Big Fat Hen"--grooving and full of feeling--complex but not showy. The only weak spot is "Feeling of Jazz" sung by guest vocalist Dianne Reeves, but it's not her fault. She sings well but the song's meaning is forced and doesn't feel natural. Luckily it's the first track on the record, so you can skip to track two and away you go. The recording quality is superb and makes this one a treat to listen to.
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Marsalis, Blue Note style 25 Mar. 2004
By G. Vliet - Published on
Format: Audio CD
I've always been a luke warm Marsalis fan. I think he has a lot of playing talent but has been sidetracked too much by a feeling of duty to Jazz which has made his composition derivative and soulless. With the exception of Majesty of the Blues his records seem simply to lack character and emotion. When I saw he'd been picked up by Blue Note I was excited to see if the traditional Blue Note energy and soul would inspire him and I think it has. The compositions on this record are basic, almost elementary, but have a childlike naïveté and playfulness that is a breath of fresh air. Moreover, it sounds like some of the best Blue Note recordings of the past both in recording style and playing. This record will probably not get good reviews from the press, or most Marsalis fans, but for those of us who are looking for something in the same spirit as the many great recordings of the 50s and 60s, there is something authentic and very worthwhile in this disc.
One note- the disc is copy protected. Of all the fans who can be trusted to respect the music, I think Blue Note's are at the top of the list and we should not be punished for supporting the label and the musicians by buying the CD.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Keep it simple 11 Mar. 2004
By Eric J. Lyman - Published on
Format: Audio CD
This is Wynton Marsalis unplugged ... sort of. Not in the traditional sense (as far as I know his long-time septet was never "plugged") but in the sense of being stripped down to the basics, revealing an obvious and simple beauty.
If you are a fan of the dense, grandiose, aggressive and adventurous recordings Mr. Marsalis has produced in recent years then this could even be a disappointment. But if what has attracted you to Mr. Marsalis' music in the past has been its basic intelligence and themes, then this will seem like a breath of fresh air, one you might not even realize you needed.
If you know Mr. Marsalis' The Majesty of Blues released way back in 1989, then you have an idea what Magic Hour has to offer -- yes, it's been 15 long years since the modern era's ambassador for the genre produced something that so effortlessly floats out of the speakers.
This may represent a new direction or evolution for Mr. Marsalis, who will turn 43 this year. It includes a new band made up of drummer Ali Jackson, pianist Eric Lewis, and Carlos Henriquez on bass. And it is Mr. Marsalis' first album with Blue Note Records after ages recording on Columbia.
For all its merits, there are two songs here that seem not to fit, both of which involve singers, Dianne Reeves on "Feeling of Jazz," and Mr. Marsalis' long-time collaborator Bobby McFerrin on "Baby, I Love You." Of course, neither is bad (although when I first heard it, "Baby, I Love You" seemed like an afterthought) ... they just don't seem to fit the simple theme of this otherwise lovely collection.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful recording 5 April 2004
By Chris - Published on
Format: Audio CD
This CD targets all levels of jazz fans, whether they be the casual listeners, the student, or the well educated. It has enough complexity to keep the analyzer busy, and enough simplicity to keep the casual listening happy. Wynton shows his talent on this album, and his group is simply incredible. The pianist is, to put it mildly, phenomenal. This album covers many types of jazz, many being in the title track itself. If you are a Wynton fan, do yourself a favor and pick this up. If you are not a Wynton fan, I still strongly recommend it because of the very talented band that is playing with him.
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magic Hour for All Hours 3 April 2004
By Kris S. Thompson - Published on
Format: Audio CD
Let me first start out by saying I have been a hot and cold fan of Marsalis. I was curious that he decided to do an album with Blue Note and I'm glad he did. The last time I felt this way about an album was when I first popped in Kind of Blue. This isn't groundbreaking material but a back to basics with a smaller group and the results are great. A great jazz album can be played at anytime, morning or night and this is it. Pick this up today.
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