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50 Years In Music: Live at Montreux 1996 by Quincy Jones & Friends

Multi-Grammy winning recipient Quincy Jones’ musical legacy can be traced back to his formative days with the Lionel Hampton band, while leaping to notoriety as a film scorer and producer. Hence, the list goes on. This DVD captures Jones at a SRO theater during the 1996 Montreux Jazz Fest, with support from the very able Illinois University Jazz band along with a cast of smooth-jazz, pop, rock and jazz soloists/vocalists.

Jones is the perfect crowd pleaser via his chronologically-oriented historical orations to the audience in-between songs. In a sense, he acts as his own best cheerleader here, but that’s ok, Jones' artistry offers mass appeal and to a large extent, he’s been a jazz prophet over the years. True to form, this flick highlights many of his original works and much more.

The band opens with a laid-back, mid-tempo swing groove of Jones original comp, penned when he was eighteen years old, titled "Kingfish." Moreover, jazz/pop diva Patti Austin sings on a few tracks. While soul-blues rock vocalist Mick Hucknall turns in an inspiring performance during Jones’ "In the Heat of the Night," which of course he composed for the Oscar winning film of the same name. Appearances by smooth-jazz sax hero David Sanborn, harmonica great Toots Thielemans and diva Chaka Khan are among the star-studded cast who appear with the orchestra.

Overall, this DVD highlights Jones’ musicality and persona, but also parleys his acute ability to seamlessly morph various genres into a jazz state of mind. It’s a mainstream, feel-good set of performances, spiced with a touch of Hollywood-like glitz. Yet, Jones is a communicator of good-cheer, where his vast accomplishments within the entertainment industry are the type of stuff that dreams are made of.

Running Time: 132 mins approx.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Quincy Jones & Friends
  • CD Title: 50 Years In Music: Live at Montreux 1996
  • Genre: Jazz DVD / Video
  • Year Released: 2008
  • Record Label: Eagle Eye Media
  • Rating: Three Stars
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