December 28, 2000
1.Stanley Turrentine - " the best of... the Blue Note years " (Blue Note Records)
Stanley was such a bad cat. His sound was just so soulful. One of my biggest influences.
2. St. Germain - "Tourist" ( Blue Note Records 2000 )
I don't listen to too much music like this.It's much more computer programmed than the way my taste usually run but I really like this. I'm glad a friend hipped me to this record because I was beginning to think I was getting too old to accept new ideas but it
turns out that most of the music like this that I was hearing really wasn't very inspiring.
3. ."Ben Webster meets Oscar Peterson" ( Verve 1959 )
Everything about Ben's tenor playing is so cool. His sound is so soft and understated and his playing could never be frantic. It's also nice to hear Oscar play piano at a bit more of a relaxed tempo. He's one of those guys who God just blessed with more technique than the rest of us humans so he naturally leans towards wilder tempos( I probably would too if i had his chops) but this is pure groove. Ray Brown on bass and Ed Thigpin on drums are swingin' deep in the pocket.
4. Wes Montgomery - "The Complete Riverside Recordings" ( Box Set )
This happened to be disc 7 I was playing but they're all great. In fact all of his recordings are great.
In my humble opinion nobody has raised the bar in jazz guitar since Wes. Quite a feat considering he died over 30 years ago. I just think he's MILES above EVERYONE else.
Tone, feel, melody, technique, rhythm, soul, he's got it all.
Pure genius! Simply the best! ( maybe you tell I really like this guy )
If you don't own any of his CD's maybe check out "the Incredible Jazz Guitar Of Wes Montgomery " or "Smoking' at the Half Note" (my two personal favorites)
5. Ry Cooder - "Get Rhythm" (WB)
I love that I don't really know how to categorize his music. It like soul music with a lot of country and blues mixed in, but very funky.
Just really,really great music ( my favorite tracks on this CD are "Get Rhythm" and
" All Shook Up "
December 22, 2000
1.Metro - "Metrocafe" (Hip Bop Records)
This is a contemporary jazz band led by keyboardist Mitchell Forman ( who also plays with me) and guitarist Chuck Loeb. It also includes Wolfgang Hafner on drums and Victor Bailey on bass. They market their CD's mainly in Europe so this is a little more adventurous than most US releases these days. I've known Chuck for a long time and always respected his guitar playing but some of the tracks on this CD have shown me that he's even better than I ever knew. I hate to categorize or make comparisons but this is great stuff for fans of Pat Metheny or Weather Report.
2. Jazz Crusaders - "Lighthouse 68" ( Liberty Records )
This was recorded before they dropped the prefix "Jazz" from their name so as you might expect it's more straight ahead than their later records but still with that Crusaders Funk.
3. Average White Band - " Average White Band" ( Atlantic )
This is a classic. 'Nuff said!
4. The Spinners - " Best of the Spinners" ( Atlantic )
I've just always loved their sound.
5. Little Beaver - " Party Down" Collectible's ( COL-5432)
Little Beaver ( aka Willie Hale ) was a staff session guitarist at Miami's TK Records
during the 70's playing on some very funky records. Check out Betty Wright's "Clean up Woman" for a dose of Beaver's badass Rhythm playing. He released 2 solo records this being the 2nd. Both of these records were very influential on my guitar playing. I'm so glad this one was re-released, I really hope someone will re-release the 1st one too.
December 13, 2000
1. Dr. Lonnie Smith - "Afrodesia" (Lazerlight)
Lonnie's a soul jazz organist's who started making records in the late 60's early 70's
This is one of his later recording's and although I don't think it's his best I really dig it.
I probably like his "Live at Club Mozambique" ( Bluenote)the best but none of his recording live up to his live performance. Catch him live if you get the chance.
2. Shelby Lynne - "I am Shelby Lynne" ( island )
This is a fairly new release having come out within the past year and I can't say enough about this CD. I just love it. For some reason which is beyond me they put this in the country bins. To me it sounds much more like AL Green meets Sheryl Crowe. Very personal writing, great performances, honest production. What can I say but it moves me.
3. Grant Green - "Live at the Lighthouse" ( Bluenote )
I think this was recorded about 1971. It's pretty raw recording, lot's of mistakes and all but really funky. Grant is one of those artist's who I heard years ago but didn't do anything for me at the time but I went back and listened to one of his CD's recently and just went nuts. Now I've gone back and purchased most of his catalog and I'm practically obsessed with his music. I don't know how I missed it the first time.
4. Willie Nelson - "Teatro"
This is another 2000 release. It's really great when an artist with this much history can make a record so sparse and honest. So often established artist just want to cater to the latest trends so they can sell more CD's and feel "current" but not Willie,
this is from the heart. You could never mistake his voice for someone else . He also pulls off the almost impossible feat in that his guitar playing kinda sucks (sorry Willie ) but is simultaneously brilliant!
5. Bill Frissell - "Good Dog , Happy Man" ( Nonesuch)
Being a dog owner I totally relate to this title. This is Bill's 2nd to most current release but by far my favorite. He's been infusing a country blues feel into his records for a while now but on this one he really got it. A far cry from his more dissonant early recordings. Great to listen to in the afternoon.