Disco was not the only special kind of music that came out of the 70's. If you remember CTI Records, where jazz legends such as George Benson, Bob James, Freddie Hubbard an…
Disco was not the only special kind of music that came out of the 70's. If you remember CTI Records, where jazz legends such as George Benson, Bob James, Freddie Hubbard and Ron Carter took popular songs from the 60's and 70's and gave them a jazz spin, you will love Groovin'
by the group BWB. BWB stands for trumpeter Rick Braun, saxophonist Kirk Whalum and guitarist Norman Brown and with quality backup from artists like Ricky Peterson and Christian McBride, the quality shows through.
As in the CTI releases from the 70's, BWB takes their turn at bringing a 90's R&B feel to some classic songs. Starting with the title track from The Rascals, BWB gives new life to Donald Fagan's Ruby Baby
, a slowed-down version of Cannonball Adderly's instrumental classic Mercy, Mercy, Mercy
, Let's Do It Again
, featuring soulful vocals from Dee Dee Bridgewater, and a hip version of It's Your Thing
. Also interesting is the gritty version of Booker T. and the MG's Hip Hug Her
. On each track, Braun, Whalum and Brown show their stuff and are able to improvise well together respecting each other's talents.
Great remakes are just the tip of the iceberg in Groovin'
. Braun, Whalum and Brown also stick in some great contemporary material, like Alicia Keyes A Woman's Worth
and D'Angelo's Brown Sugar
. Those two tracks fit into the soulful Philly groove that Groovin'
strives to follow.
Even though the title track is a smooth jazz friendly song, Groovin'
is just the CD for people who want to go beyond the usual smooth jazz genre of music and test out how improvisation makes jazz unique. Everyone gets a chance to show their chops and they take it seriously. Groovin'
is smooth jazz at its best and goes beyond. Get into the groove.