Six trio selections by the Stanley Cowell Trio, featuring Stanley Clarke on bass and Jimmy Hopps on skins. Elastic and flowing best describe the mellow "Maimoun"; Cowell's crisp keyboarding is determined and feisty, and Clarke's dark, moody bass solo consummates the excursion. Cowell and Clarke display amazing technique on "Ibn Mukhtarr Mustapha," and Hopps' impressionistic drumming is head clearing.
Reissue with the latest 24-bit remastering. Features original cover artwork. Comes with a descripton in Japanese. Fast and funky fusion from David Matthews – building off the sound of his later Kudu recordings with a sweet electric groove! The album's got a pretty full approach overall – with Matthews on electric piano, and directing a large group of players that includes Mike Maineri, Michael Brecker, Jon Faddis, Shunzo Ohno, and Ronnie Cuber – and a number of tracks feature a vocal chorus that includes Ullanda McCullough and Yvonne Lewis. The overall style is slick, but not in a bad way – and Matthews more than meets the Japanese fusion sound head to head for this non-US release from the time!
Reissue with the latest 24-bit remastering. Features original cover artwork. Comes with a descripton in Japanese. Mid-'80s big band recordings featuring the arrangements and compositions of David Matthews, mixing swing, bop, soul-jazz, and fusion influences. There's a blend between acoustic and electric, standards and originals, and tightly crafted ensemble-dominated arrangements and straight blowing material.
Reissue with the latest 24-bit remastering. Features original cover artwork. Comes with a descripton in Japanese. A Tokyo native born in 1957, Toshiyuki Honda is a professional saxophonist, composer, arranger, and producer. In 1978 he released his first album as a leader, "Burnin' Wave," while still a university student. As one of Japan's best-known saxophonists, Honda has since recorded with a host of world-celebrated musicians including Chick Corea, Freddie Hubbard, and Christopher Cross among others. Honda is also widely known for his versatile skills as a composer and arranger of scores for TV dramas, commercials, movies, and classical music genres.
Cardboard sleeve (mini LP) reissue from Phil Upchurch featuring the latest remastering and the high-quality SHM-CD format. Recorded in 1971, shortly after he departed Cadet where he served as a house sideman-playing on dozens of records and a prefferred guitarist for Curtis Mayfield and Jerry Butler, Phil Upchurch headed for the West Coast and Blue Thumb Records. Produced by Tommy LiPuma, Upchurch's Darkness, Darkness is his quintessential (double) album, full of laid-back funky grooves, elegant, mind-blowing guitar work, elegant string and horn arrangements, and fine Fender Rhodes work from Donny Hathaway with legendary session bassist Chuck Rainey and smooth jazz piano great Joe Sample in the house.
Within a refined setting of easy listening pop ballads and lightly funky up-tempo selections produced by Al McKay, Henderson proves himself an assured vocalist with mastery of clarity and phrasing. The problem here is the material isn't challenging enough – it's often formulaic and derivative of other early-'80s releases. Even a contribution from Stevie Wonder, "Crush on You," wanders into oblivion. But the singer's debonair tone and elegant, polished diction makes the weaker sound stronger. A perfect example is the mid-tempo "I'd Rather Be Gone," which suffers from a sleepy melody and clichéd rhythm arrangement.
Roger Hatcher's biggest claim to fame is being a cousin to Edwin Starr (aka Charles Hatcher). Unfortunately, Hatcher's success hasn't come close to Edwin's. A prolific songwriter, Roger has written more than 1,000 songs. His two biggest successes were an album cut by the Dramatics of his "I Dedicate My Life to You," and Clarence Carter's rendition of "I Got Caught," a deep soul classic. Clarence added a rap and scored on the R&B charts with the Hatcher song. Roger Hatcher was born in Birmingham, AL, in 1946. His two older brothers, Will and Roosevelt, inspired him musically – Will played sax and Roosevelt sang. Hatcher wrote his first song, "I Need Someone," at Hayes High in Birmingham, where he would develop tunes on the piano in the music room. Hatcher had no formal training and played by ear.