George Duke:Here are some great musicians on the record. Steve Ferrone did the majority of the drumming (aside from the Synclavier drums); Paul Jackson on guitar, Paulinho Da Costa on percussion; and Louis Johnson on bass.I had some valid musical ideas, but they just couldn't be sustained by my vocal ability. In other words, in general the material is good, but I should have used other lead vocalists whose voice and vocal ability fit the songs better.
For the past 35 years George Duke has been one of the least predictable jazz,funk and fusion keyboard players around.
And this new album simply titles 'Duke' shows that he hasn't changed.In the past decade and a half Duke's sound,as so many other musicians of his type has been forced to compete with many younger (and often less ambitious) singers and musicians who are more popular then he is.So to get it out of the way that is way modern R&B singer Eric Benet sings on "Somebody's Body",which is redeemed totally by Duke's wonderful piano stylings.Elesewhere this CD is a close to wonderful as Duke has ever been.On "Trust",the pulsating "T-Jam" and the more contemporary "Saturday Night" Duke delivers classic funk in his own unqiue style,just as he does on the midtempo "I Wanna Know",
Following two studio recordings, this impressive band hit the road and cut this session with keyboardist George Duke. Their encounter provided for an uneven, but infectious, recording. "Hip Pockets," composed by Cobham, and "Ivory Tattoo," composed by Scofield, begin the session with some intense playing. Things get a bit goofy with "Space Lady" (a song which probably worked better live), and a bit melodramatic with "Almustafa the Beloved."
Deja Vu is 2010's bookend to 2008's Dukey Treats. That record explored George Duke's funk roots and channeled everything from Earth, Wind & Fire to P-Funk, artists who inspired his own successful run of funk outings. Deja Vu revisits Duke's love of electric funky jazz. Here he recalls some of the production and musical techniques he employed in the '70s. Along with playing a load of synths (mono and analog), Rhodes and Wurlitzer electric pianos, clavinet, acoustic piano, and even miniMoog bass are in abundance, too. The production is pure retro; compared to the contemporary jazz recordings of the 21st century, Deja Vu sounds almost organic.