Tracks 4


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Gus Gus hail from Iceland and although not as extreme as their compatriot Bjork they also take a rather quirky approach to music. They would probably appeal to acid-jazz lovers most though other influences are apparent on a diverse selection of songs. Very Important People comes from This Is Normal - their current album, which was released this year. The song features an interesting combination of keyboard sounds including some smart e.p. touches.

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Paul Weller has been a major musical figure in Britain for close on 25 years and his music has been of a consistently high standard throughout that time. His 1995 solo album Stanley Road received deserved critical acclaim when it was released. Since the days of the Style Council, Paul has known how to incorporate keyboards into his soulful rock sound. Although he is best known as a guitarist on Broken Stones Paul plays Wurlitzer, while his old Style Council partner Mick Talbot plays Rhodes.

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A superb double CD Jazz-Funk compilation that avoids the pitfall of featuring tracks that have already been over exposed on other selections. There are lots of excellent electric piano tracks by some top players. Ahmad Jamal provides two, Boatride(1) and the Stevie Wonder cover Superstition(2) and another jazz veteran, Randy Weston, performs the spritely In Memory Of(3). E.p. heavyweight Chick Corea contributes Fickle Funk(4) from his Secret Agent album and drummer Alphonse Mouzon recruits Herbie Hancock for Rhodes duty on By All Means(5). Lots of other tunes feature e.p. as well, a must for lovers of the funkier side of jazz.

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Jean-Paul Maunick or 'Bluey' as he is better known as has been fronting Incognito for around 20 years. These days they are partly associated with Acid-Jazz, but those with long memories can recall their earlier period of success as part of what was then called the Brit-Funk scene, (basically the U.K.'s take on Jazz-Funk.) The group has used many musicians and guest vocalists over the years, and with diligent use of covers they have enjoyed chart status. Taken from the Beneath The Surface album Graham Harvey plays e.p. on a track called She Wears Black. The rest of the album is mainly vocal jazzy soul, with a few more nice instrumentals too.

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The Crusaders had been together for over twenty years when they had major crossover success with this record. Criticised by some followers at the time for being too commercial, I think the soulful title track Street Life(1) with Joe Sample's excellent piano solo, (and a career forging vocal from Randy Crawford) turned a lot of people on to jazz-funk. You certainly don't see musicians of this calibre in the charts to often these days. Carnival Of The Night(2) is another favourite tune of mine with Joe in fine form once again.

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Jazz legend Dizzy Gillespie encouraged Lalo Schifrin to leave Argentina to further his musical career in the U.S. and the talented composer/arranger/pianist never looked back. He has scored prolifically for the film industry, and composed one of the most instantly recognisable TV themes ever with Mission Impossible. Black Widow was recorded in 1976 for CTI with a superb array of session musicians,and was distinctly influenced by disco's production values. The resultant hybrid sound sharing some common ground with MFSB, and the Salsoul Orchestra. There is lots of nice e.p. playing, particularly on Tabu(1),Con Alma(2), and the alternate version of Baia(3) which were all added as bonus tracks to the original release.

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Contents   Tracks:  1  2  3  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12

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