Doc Gibbs & Picanté - Servin' It Up! HOT!!!


Recently I listened to the album "Two Of A Kind" by Bob James and Earl Klugh (1982). On this sophisticated masterpiece I found Leonard "Doc" Gibbs mentioned as the percussion player. Tracing his musical career one finds collaborations with such illustrious musicians as Bob James ("Ivory Coast"), Alexander Zonjic ("Neon"), Will Downing ("All The Man You Need") or Loose Ends ("So Where Are You"). Although drum-programming is in mode, a lot of artists still prefers the real percussion. Thanks God for some different music!  The explanation for his nickname "Doc" is written in his bio: "Leonard Gibbs became Doc when Grover Washington announced to his audience, “…There are two doctors in Philly…Dr.J (of the 76ers) and Doctor Gibbs”.

"Servin' It Up! Hot!!! is "Doc" Gibbs debut album. Obviously there are many artists with a certain reluctance as for example Michael O'Neill ("Never Too Late"). You are wondering about the spicy title of the album, are you? "Doc" Gibbs  became the musical director for Emeril Live in 1997! -- The hottest cooking show on the cable Food Network (TVFN).

Bam! The first song bursts into brain. "Doc" shows a parade of his instruments such as congas, bongo ganza, wind chimes, guiro, gua-gua. But don't worry, that 's not a pure percussion album. Cliff Starkey, a maestro of piano, rolls perfectly over the keys. A Latin jazz feast for all fastidious palate.

Hilda's Lullaby isn't lulling at all. Although slow tempered "Doc"'s percussion and Cliff Starkey's keyboards background combined with his magnificent piano recitation warm up the heart of every jazz friend.

If you like the music of Santana, go ahead to Baila Pammi. The Brazilian sun is shining about this fine Latin jazz piece. Terrell Stafford plays a sophisticated trumpet solo. Anew "Doc"'s percussion tempts to play with him on desk or everything else which is ready to hand.

The title Miles Of Hope is a wordplay and reminiscence to Miles Davis' music. Terrell Stafford searches the nearness to Miles' muted trumpet.

Waiting 4 You is my favorite on this album. Melody and arrangement are impressive and the dynamic tune gets its own groove by John Blake's violin play.

Don't miss Salvador Bahia, the Brazilian center of carnival. Jon Lucien catches Latin American's spirit with his smooth vocals. "Doc" demonstrates his mastership of the cuica. 

On Servin' It Up! Terrell Stafford 's trumpet introduces into jazz fusion elements with a Latin touch.

"Doc" Gibbs reveals his African heritage on Madre Del Mar with his speaking udu, Eubie Snow's pretty flute solo and the sing-sang of deep Africa.

On the next two pieces Rose and Seven Up, Six down Gerald Veasley, one of my favorite bass players, is sharing the party and the second tune also features Michael "Patches" Stewart (trumpet) and Gerald Albright (sax). Although both Gerald's are counted to the smooth jazz genre they are perfect jazz musicians. 

Another percussion interplay is Doc's Pots. "Doc" Gibbs is obviously a fanatic collector and player of African and Brazilian percussion instruments. If you want to hear more of this, try to attend his show ILU AIYE (e-lou-ah-yeah) or better share one of his workshops, where you can learn all about percussion, if you have the necessary skills and a feeling for rhythm.

Starline has a rockish attitude: Felicia Collins plays extensively distortion guitars. 

Arroz Con Pollo (Rice with Chicken) tastes well. Try this recipe in Spanish. Eso es muy caliente. More fusion jazz with a Latin temper.

There is no way. This album is a must buy. Get it before it is sold out.

Further information

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