GRP Records has released Mindi Abair’s latest CD entitled Life Less Ordinary, an album that is light years ahead of her second recording Come As You Are. This time out, Mindi revisits the energy and spontaneity of her 2003 release It Just Happens That Way. With assistance from a stellar cast of seasoned musicians, Mindi’s alto saxophone blows new life into a sometimes stagnant array of smooth jazz offerings. Listeners who are constantly searching for something fresh may find renewed zeal in Mindi Abair’s latest release. Tracks such as "Do You Miss Me," "The Joint" and "Slinky" are true reminders of Abair’s funk-laden capabilities. On top of everything else this CD has to offer, versatility is but one of its many attributes. Life Less Ordinary is filled with upbeat rhythms, seductive moods and a variety of cover songs to push the envelope of Mindi's creative flow. This entire conceptualized recording is filled with bits of classic inspired rhythms, as well as a montage of strategically placed horn dynamics.Although Life Less Ordinary does offer a cornucopia of energetic funk oriented capabilities, the CD also includes a somber side too. The track entitled "Rain" is a reminder of the impact Katrina had on the residents of Louisiana. Another cut entitled "Ordinary Love" is a Latin-inspired tune that speaks of Mindi’s outlook on love. In essence, she has attempted to capture the simplicity of what love is truly about in its purest form. In either case, Mindi Abair shows that she is very adept at exhibiting her sensitive side with music that not only reflects on the complexities of life, but proves that she is a very well-rounded musician in approach to her craft.
Life Less Ordinary may well be Mindi Abair’s best CD to date. Although she came out smoking on her debut release, her second CD was a bust in my opinion. This latest release lets me know that all is well with Mindi and she has recaptured the energy that brought her to our attention in the first place. With the likes Lalah Hathaway, Ricky Peterson, Keb’ Mo and long-time collaborator Matthew Hager by her side, Mindi has provided a renewed appreciation for her abilities as an artist. She has also shown a multi-faceted side of herself as a musician, vocalist and writer with this third release. As one of only a few female saxophonists in smooth jazz, Mindi Abair is definitely making her own statement and her presence known. Life Less Ordinary sends a message worth listening to, as it places Mindi in a stand-alone category when compared to her contemporaries.