Jazz Coalition - Long Street
real base of Smooth Jazz are those artists which are constantly
performing on hundreds of gigs and regularly releasing new albums. UJC
is one of these groups and it is always a pleasure to review their
records. Their newest project is "Long Street" showcasing
the following members: Brandon Howard (piano & keyboards), Ben
Sherburne (saxophones, flute, keyboards), Lee Savory (trumpet &
flugelhorn), Joe Gothard (guitar), Phil Raney (bass), Jim Bridges
(drums) and Hector Maldonado (percussion).
The album starts with Rising
Park. Lead instrument is the sax. No wonder Ben Sherburne has
written this title. It reminds on tunes of "The
Rippingtons", especially those together with Brandon Fields.
Momma's Eyes is a funky
and hooking song. Savory (trumpet) and Sherburne (sax) have a
brassy duet with solos of both. The funky tone is delivered by Joe
Gothard's guitar with short touches. Also impressing the keyboards in
Just Believe showcases
anew UJC's brass power. Savory's and Sherburne's solos are intensive
but always smooth and accommodating.
Something for the peaceful moment offers Intimate
Journey. Brandon Howard on piano shows his brilliance.
Pleasure Seeker, the
title song of Paul Taylor's album from 1997, is already a classic.
Covered by UJC this song gets an absolute refinement. Especially real
drums and percussion level this tune upwards. Remarkable the guitar
part with echoes.
Nowadays Latin flavor is very popular. Luquillo
Beach has a nice Bossa attitude.
We Fall Down is the
first vocal song on the album. Friends of gospel music will like it.
The song was written by Kyle Matthews. Kyle is a great writer of
gospels which are performed by The Martins, Across The Sky, Avalon,
Bob Carlisle, Gary Chapman and more. Most of you will know this song
by Gerald Albright's album "Groovology".
On Gerald's album this song is mainly performed by a female
vocal. Here is the lead singer and tenor Quan Howell who is known by
his work with Jon Secada and Sounds of Blackness ("Time For
Healing"). This version shows more the original gospel character
of this song as intended by Kyle.
Deeper into funk with Long Street.
Average-White-Band-feeling and some timbales from Santana.
Jamocha is a good example for UJC's
People Make The World Go 'Round was
originally performed by The Stylistics on their debut album (1971),
then by Michael Jackson for the movie track of "Ben" (1972).
Since that time the song became a classic covered by Angela Bofill,
Walter Beasley, Bob Baldwin, Ramsey Lewis, Joe McBride, Bill McGee,
Marcus Miller, Phil Upchurch and hundreds more. I think this version
is the longest one (11:37).
UJC, thanks for the new album. I had a lot of fun listening to it.