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GO WEST....

Saturday, 07 May 2011 11:33 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

Mowest_coverIn 1971 BERRY GORDY JR launched the Mowest label as part of his company's re-location to the West Coast. By GORDY'S high standards the label wasn't hugely successful and it quietly folded in '73. Interestingly given Motown's reissue track record, there's never been that many Mowest reissues and Mowest specific compilations have been few and far between... till now.

On June 27th Light In The Attic Records will be releasing a wonderful 16 track Mowest compilation. 'Our Lives Are Shaped By What We Love; Motown's Mowest story 1971 – 1973' is a neat overview of the label's best and features tracks from people like FRANKI VALLI AND THE FOUR SEASONS, G C CAMERON, THE SISTERS LOVE, SYREETA, THE COMMODORES and ODYSSEY whose 'Our Lives Are Shaped By What We Love' provides the album's title. The set offers some sweet and welcome rarities too like SUZEE IKEDA'S version of 'I Can't Give Back The Love I Feel For You' and THE NU PAGE'S lovely 'A Heart Is A House'.

Expect a full review of the album on SJF very soon.

Last Updated on Saturday, 07 May 2011 12:07

 

SHOUT IT OUT ... FOR HANSON

Friday, 06 May 2011 15:49 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

hansonReaders of SoulandJazzandFunk.com can be forgiven for not remembering the 1997 no. 1 hit 'Mmmbop' by US brothers HANSON. It was pure teen pop, but since those heady days the trio have kept incredibly busy. Constantly honing their sound and style, the HANSON boys have just released their fifth studio album – 'Shout It Out' – and what a great example of blue-eyed soul it is! There are echoes of dear old HALL and OATES throughout the 12 tracker and with people like Motown Funk Brother, BOB BABBIT and veteran horn arranger, JERRY HEY helping out you know we're talking quality music. Here at SJF we particularly liked 'Make It Out Alive' – a tune that combines the swagger of mellow moment TOWER OF POWER and the melody lines of LAURA NYRO.

Lead single is the punchy, guitar-led 'Give A Little Love' which comes complete with a quirky, laid back remix from AHMIR ?UESTLOVE THOMPSON of THE ROOTS... certainly worth checking out.

HANSON have just announced a series of five London concerts which will take place between the 5th and 10th of June. The venue is Kings College and the brothers will perform each of their five studio albums – night by night – in chronological sequence. The culmination, of course, will be 'Shout It Out' on June 10th. The album is released on HANSON'S own 3CG label at the beginning of June.

Last Updated on Friday, 06 May 2011 15:54

 

ELEMENTARY MY DEAR WATSON ...

Saturday, 30 April 2011 13:29 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

Nathan-Watson-foto-cropNATHAN WATSON is a London-based soul man who made waves at the back end of 2010 with a catchy tune called 'Reach Out (You've Got a Friend)'. Since then he's been busy working live and helping out at a number of charity functions including Help For Heroes and The Prince's Trust.

The good news is that the legendary SED SOUL remix crew have gotten hold of NATHAN'S 'Reach Out' and remixed it – not once, but twice! The "SED SOUL MIX" takes what was essentially a simple, acoustic soul sort of cut and transforms it into a classy mid-paced groover that is bound to please modern soul room sophisticates. The SED SOUL "Roots Mix" is different again. It's not quite Caribbean but it has that kind of swagger about it - ensuring that it will be a big summer anthem.

The original take on the tune is still available too as are three more lovely cuts – the ultra catchy 'Soulsisticated', the plaintive 'Proud To Be Your Man' and the remarkable 'Loveline'. That last one really is lovely and sadly it reminds me of the much-missed LYNDEN DAVID HALL. Find out more about NATHAN and www.nathanwatsonmusic.co.uk

 

OMAR KEEPS ON DANCING ...

Friday, 29 April 2011 09:33 Bill Buckley E-mailPrintPDF

omar_dancing-300x220UK soul star OMAR returns to the fray in June with a brand new summer-flavoured single, 'Dancing'. The cut is collaboration with ZED BIAS (aka MADDSLINKY) and will be released on Tru Thoughts on 27th June. OMAR had previously worked with MADDSLINKY on the latter's 2010 single 'Special' and on 'Dancing' they've crafted a cut that will appeal to adventurous radio programmers and discerning club DJs alike . It's a pacey tune with a steel drum figure running throughout and all topped with ZED BIAS'S unique energy.

The single is a precursor to the Tru Thoughts reissue of OMAR'S 'Sing' album which , of course, featured collaborations with STEVIE WONDER, ESTELLE, ANGIE STONE and COMMON. 'Dancing' is one of two new cuts added to the album reissue. The other is a BOB SINCLAR remix of 'It's So'

The single 'Dancing' will be available digitally and in limited edition vinyl. The album 'Sing' is re-released on 18th July.

 

NEW JAZZ COMING YOUR WAY...

Wednesday, 27 April 2011 11:06 Charles Waring E-mailPrintPDF

ambroseOne of the hottest new names on the jazz scene is AMBROSE AKINMUSIRE. His Blue Note debut is the wonderfully-titled 'When The Heart Emerges Glistening' and has been getting rave reviews in the USA, where Akinmusire hails from. Catch him live in the UK at Ronnie Scott's on May 18th.

Look out for SJF's interview with him coming soon.

 

Former Miles Davis sideman, guitarist JOHN SCOFIELD, shows his mellow side on a new album 'A Moment's Peace' just out on Emarcy. A tasteful blend of covers and original material, it finds the Ohio-born fretboardist leading a quartet comprising keyboardist Larry Goldings, bassist Scott Colley and drummer Brian Blade.

'Forever' is a the first album by COREA, CLARKE & WHITE, a trio version of the legendary fusion quartet, Return To Forever. The first disc of this 2-CD set is devoted to acoustic versions of songs that influenced the group, including Bill Evans' 'Waltz For Debby' and Thelonious Monk's 'Hackensack.' The second disc finds the trio performing some of their classic material – including 'Senor Mouse' and '500 Miles High' - augmented by original RTF guitar player, BILL CONNORS, violinist JEAN-LUC PONTY and singer CHAKA KHAN.

Bassist/film composer KYLE EASTWOOD also has an excellent new set out. Entitled 'Songs From the Chateau', it's the Californian musician's fifth album to date and is released by the UK-based Candid label. Its title refers to the fact that it was recorded at a 15th century French chateau. The opening cut 'Marciac' – which despite its Gallic title melds funk and hard bop – is already causing ripples in the jazz community.

US trumpeter SEAN JONES, who has played with Nancy Wilson, Joe Lovano and Frank Foster and until recently was the lead trumpeter in Wynton Marsalis's Jazz At Lincoln Center Orchestra, releases his sixth album as leader called 'No Need For Words' on Mack Avenue in May. This new set is a straight ahead offering devoted to love songs and demonstrates why the 32-year-old Ohio horn man is considered by many as one of jazz's rising stars.

JAMES FARM is a new jazz supergroup combining the formidable talents of saxophonist Joshua Redman, pianist Aaron Parks, bassist Matt Penman and drummer Eric Harland. Their self-titled debut is released on Nonesuch this month and proves to be an exciting affair, mixing breathtaking improvisation with strong compositional foundations.

Mancunian DJ and trumpet maestro, MATTHEW HALSALL, is back with a scintillating new album on the Gondwana label called 'On The Go.' It pays tribute to both modal and spiritual jazz of the 1960s with a series of fine compositions that reference the past yet are fully plugged into the present day.

 

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