Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Various Artists - Reggae Gold 2011 (2011)

Various Artists - Reggae Gold 2011
VP 2011

01. Jah Army - Stephen Marley Feat. Buju Banton & Damian Marley
02. Nuh Ramp Wid We - I-Octane
03. How Mi Feel - Assassin
04. Peppa - Mavado
05. None Ah Dem - Shabba Ranks
06. Stronger - Cham Feat. Mykal Roze & Rodney Price
07. For Yur Eyez Only - Shaggy & Alaine
08. Whine (Wine) - Vybz Kartel
09. Duggu Duggu - Gyptian
10. Black Woman - Richie Spice
11. Can't Go Round It - Stevie Face
12. Groovy Little Thing - Tarrus Riley
13. Pull Up - Beres Hammond
14. Everyday - Courtney John
15. Times Like These - Queen Ifrica
16. One Draw - Alborosie Feat. Camila

Disc 2: Bonus DJ MiX

This collects 16 Jamaican reggae releases from the VP Music Group, including “Jah Army” from Stephen Marley (which also features guest spots from Damian Marley and Buju Banton), a pair of cuts from reggae veterans Shabba Ranks (“None Ah Dem”) and Beres Hammond (“Pull Up”), and a bonus DJ mix disc from DJ Norie. It’ll all play well on a hot and sunny summer’s day. ~ Steve Leggett, All Music Guide


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Chrisette Michele - I Am (2007)

Chrisette Michele - I Am
R&B | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 429MB | 59:11
Def Jam 2007

01. Like a Dream
02. Work It Out 
03. If I Have My Way
04. Best of Me
05. Your Joy   
06. Good Girl
07. Be OK
08. Mr. Radio 
09. Golden
10. Let's Rock
11. Love Is You 
12. In This for You
13. This the Way Love Feels
14. I Am One



Chrisette Michele - Better (2013)

Chrisette Michele - Better
R&B | FLAC | CUE | LOG | COVER | 350MB | 51:33
Motown 2013

01. Be In Love
02. A Couple of Forevers
03. Let Me Win
04. Rich Hipster
05. Love Won’t Leave Me Out
06. In My Head
07. Better
08. Snow
09. Visual Love
10. Charades
11. In My Heart
12. You Mean That Much to Me
13. Supa
14. In My Bed
15. Get Through the Night
16. Can the Cool Be Loved?

Three Top Ten R&B albums into her career, Chrisette Michele moves from Def Jam to Motown for Better, an album inspired by personal development. Recovery from both a breakup and a negative self-image informs much of the material, from the booming optimism of the opening "Be in Love" ("I wanna love again, try one more time") to the closing "Can the Cool Be Loved?" (I'm on display, no defense/Sayin' what I say, no offense"). Instead of working strictly with Chuck Harmony, as she did on 2010's Let Freedom Reign, she collaborates with several producers. Harmony handles the title track, which sounds like it had Deniece Williams in mind until Chrisette's voice slides into an empowered wail. Pop & Oak contribute the O'Jays-sampling "A Couple of Forevers," one of the pair's better twinkling-ballad backdrops, and allow Chrisette's lead and background lines to dominate. "Let Me Win," made with Carvin & Ivan, recalls the singer's debut with its surprisingly fresh-sounding combination of a well-known breakbeat -- courtesy of the Soul Searchers -- and lively piano. Better overflows with positivity and Chrisette's natural dynamism. The emotional reach within her whisper mode alone is greater than most can express with their full range. Another development is that she is a little less inhibited. Although she remains miles away from Kelly Rowland territory, she's seductive even when she's forthright about "throwing you shade," as on the slinking Wizzy Wow production "Charades" -- easily one of her best songs, laced with inimitable hushed phrasing. The deluxe 20-track edition is necessary for two cool and mellow collaborations with Musiq (Soulchild), as well as a hot, thermostat-shattering Wizzy Wow track. ~ Andy Kellman, All Music Guide

Chrisette Michele - Keyboards, Vocals
Johnnie Smith - Keyboards
Tom Gardner - Guitar
Shea Taylor - Musician
Ivan Barias - Keyboards
Darhyl Camper - Keyboards

Monday, April 14, 2014

Angela Winbush - Angela Winbush (1994)

Angela Winbush - Angela Winbush
SOUL | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 515MB | 62:42
Elektra 1994

01. Treat U Right      
02. Inner City Blues 
03. Keep Turnin' Me On 
04. Too Good To Let You Go
05. Baby Hold On       
06. You're My Everything 
07. Dream Lover 
08. Hot Summer Love
09. Sensitive Heart 
10. I'm The Kind Of Woman
11. Inner City Blues (Radio edit)

On this release she seems a bit unsure of herself: the single "Treat U Rite" was written and produced by Chuckii Booker, and she resorts to a Marvin Gaye cover ("Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)") in two hip hop- flavored versions. As usual, there's one duet with Ronald Isley, "Baby Hold On." The tone is a bit muted; her sensual ballads are as good as ever ("Hot Summer Love") but there's not much of the slamming soul/funk ("Dream Lover" is the closest thing, and it's still pretty slow). Since there's no must-have single, this is really of interest only to her fans. The top studio musicians include East, Gerald Albright and George Duke. ~ David Bertrand Wilson,

Angela Winbush - Vocals, Piano, Clavinet
Chuckii Booker - Bass, Drums
Sekou Bunch - Bass, Drums
George Duke - Flute, Piano
Nathan East - Bass
Ernie Isley - Guitar, Sitar
Roman Johnson - Synthesizers
Gerald Albright - Alto Saxophone
Herman Matthews: Drums, Percussion

Cassandra Wilson - Another Country (2012)

Cassandra Wilson - Another Country
VOCAL | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 290MB | 44:03
eOne 2012

01. Red Guitar
02. No More Blues
03. O Sole Mio
04. Deep Blue
05. Almost Twelve
06. Passion
07. When Will I See You Again
08. Another Country
09. Letting You Go
10. Olomuroro

On her 19th album, Cassandra Wilson, ever the musical chameleon, changes directions once more. She is arguably the greatest living female jazz singer. Well known for her blues, soul, pop covers, and jazz standards, her smoky alto bends almost everything to its will. Wilson's phrasing is utterly unique, as original as any horn player's or pianist's music. Another Country, co-produced by Wilson and guitarist Fabrizio Sotti, was recorded in three different studios in Florence, New Orleans, and New York. She wrote all but three selections here: there are two instrumentals by Sotti and a reading of "O Sole Mio." Other players include bassist Nicola Sorato, Julien Labro on accordion, and percussionists Mino Cinelu and Lekan Babalola. Opener "Red Guitar" displays the wisdom of this small-group approach beautifully. Her vocal illustrates a mysterious, sensual jazz blues that is accented by Sotti, hand drums, and an atmospheric, unintrusive accordion. "No More Blues" is more elegiac, a spacy jazz tune with fine syncopation and the suggested undercurrent of a blues backbeat. "Almost Twelve" is an ambitious attempt at bossa nova but it falls short. Wilson restrains herself to fit the song form rather than retrofit it to her voice; it's too much of a compromise. The Latin undertones in "Passion" work far better and the singer is able to engage her lower register and sing in near counterpoint to her accompanists. It's a heady, intoxicating swirl of lyric harmony and rhythmic invention. With its classical trappings and the prominence of the accordion, "O Sole Mio" should sound corny -- it doesn't. Wilson delivers it as a haunting folk song and reinvents it for the 21st century. The slippery meld of jazz, folk, and pop in the set's longest tune, "When Will I See You Again," makes it the most unusual and engaging track here. Wilson's compositional language is as imaginative as her singing, and Sotti's skeletal yet seemingly lush arrangements are sumptuous. The title track employs samba, post-bop jazz, and nuevo flamenco. Wilson's voice compels her poetic lyrics to assert themselves over the melody, as Sotti soars in his tasteful solo. Though there are a couple of missteps here, Another Country is a welcome new phase for Wilson. Not only are her boundaries as a singer expanding with her musical choices; her songwriting instincts and languages are developing exponentially as well. ~ Thom Jurek, All Music Guide

Cassandra Wilson - Guitar, Vocals
Fabrizio Sotti - Guitar
Mino Cinelu - Percussion
Nicola Sorato - Bass
Julien Labro - Accordion
Lekan Babalola - Percussion

Cheryl Lynn - The Best of Cheryl Lynn: Got to Be Real

Cheryl Lynn - Got to Be Real [Rhythm & Soul Series]
Columbia/Legacy 1996

01. Got To Be Real
02. Give My Love To You
03. All My Lovin
04. Star Love
05. Shake It Up Tonight
06. I've Got Just What You Need
07. I've Got Faith In You
08. Keep It Hot
09. Day After Day
10. Sleep Walkin
11. Believe In Me
12. If This World Were Mine
13. Encore
14. It's Gonna Be Right
15. Toto - Georgy Porgy

And now -- here's Got to Be Real: The Best of Cheryl Lynn! Fifteen tracks performed by one of the most explosive female singers ever in the music world. A Gong Show discoveree, Cheryl Lynn first hit with the thumping "It's Got to Be Real," a tune with a serious groove that flew up the charts. "Star Love" was just as exciting, and gave Lynn the perfect vehicle to display her awesome multi-octave range. You can bounce and dip to "Shake It Up Tonight," a rump-mover and Soul Train favorite. Her exciting duet with Luther Vandross, "If This World Is Mine," the old Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell song, is stunning; their powerful voices will blow you away. Lynn had it going on, she scored with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis' strutting "Encore," a rouser with crown ambiance, and a staple of her live concerts. A singer's singer, Lynn's voice is an exciting, warm, compelling instrument. ~ Andrew Hamilton, All Music Guide

Cheryl Lynn - Vocals
Nat Adderley - Synthesizer
Michael McGloiry - Guitar
Marcus Miller - Bass
John Cameron - Piano
Bobbye Hall - Congas
Greg Moore - Guitar
Andy Newmark - Drums
Doc Powell - Guitar
David Shields - Bass
David Hungate - Bass
Yogi Horton - Drums
Allen Magreer - Bass
Terry Lewis - Guitar
David Paich - Piano
Ray Parker - Guitar
Paul Jackson - Guitar
Gary Johnson - Drums
Ollie Brown - Congas
Bobby Caldwell - Guitar
Jimmy Jam - Synthesizer
George Mitchell - Drums
Monte Moir - Synthesizer
Crusher Bennett - Congas
Greg Phillinganes - Synthesizer

Angie Stone - Black Diamond (1999)

Angie Stone - Black Diamond
SOUL | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 412MB | 54:48
Arista 1999

01. Freedom
02. No More Rain
03. Green Grass Vapors
04. Everyday
05. Coulda Been You
06. Visions
07. Life Story
08. Just a Pimp
09. Trouble Man
10. Bone 2 Pic
11. Man Loves His Money
12. Love Junkie
13. Black Diamonds & Blue Pearls
14. Heaven Help
15. Life Story

A backup singer, an occasional producer, and once the leader of an all-girl singing group, Angie Stone presents an impressive fusion of classic soul, '80s funk, and '90s hip-hop in her solo debut, Black Diamond. Purposefully positive, the album chronicles Stone's journeys maintaining personal faith and loving relationships, resplendent with new takes on traditional soul sounds. Stone supports her songwriting and vocal talents with help from A-list musicians/writer/producers such as Lenny Kravitz and D'Angelo. The sophisticated mix is elevated by Stone's incredible voice. With a continuous easy groove, she never resorts to cheap vocal acrobatics to showcase her gifts. With nods to Roberta Flack and Chaka Khan and stylistic similarities to Lauryn Hill, Stone sings of the possibilities of love and life's challenges with "Life Story" and the beautiful standout single "No More Rain." When Stone reaches for a funkier, dirtier groove, the result is riveting. "Love Junkie" and "Man Loves His Money" are as sexy as any Prince song, with interesting guitar solos and funky basslines. And even when she's calling out dishonest lovers everywhere on "Bone 2 Pic" and "Just a Pimp," she makes it sound like the offenders should be ashamed for dissing such a sexy woman. Stone's sensual soul is a refreshing and much-needed alternative to silicone-coated R&B and cartoonish rap, and should satisfy fans of soul, R&B, rap, rock, and any other genre. ~ Theresa E. LaVeck, All Music Guide

Angie Stone – Vocals
Rex Rideout – Keyboards
Chalmers Alford - Guitar
Jonas Krag - Guitar
Lenny Kravitz - Guitar
D'Angelo – Piano, Drums, Bass
Ali Shaheed Muhammad – Bass, Keyboards

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Jungle Brothers - Done by the Forces of Nature (1989)

Jungle Brothers - Done by the Forces of Nature
HIP HOP+HOUSE | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 349MB | 60:39
Warner Brothers 1989

01. Beyond This World
02. Feelin Alright
03. Sunshine
04. What U Waitin 4?
05. U Make Me Sweat
06. Acknowledge Your Own History
07. Belly Dancin Dina
08. Good Newz Comin
09. Done by the Forces of Nature
10. Beeds on a String
11. Tribe Vibes
12. J. Beez Comin Through
13. Black Woman
14. In Dayz 2 Come
15. Doin Our Own Dang
16. Kool Accordin "2" a Jungle Brother

The follow-up to their groundbreaking debut, Done By the Forces of Nature is the point where the Jungle Brothers' production catches up to their musical ambition. There's still a ruddy, lo-fi edge to the record, but the samples are more abundant and intricately woven, and there's an altogether fuller sound that gives the group a greater presence. Moreover, the group's non-musical ideas come into greater focus as well. The Native Tongues' Afrocentric philosophy gets a more extensive airing here than on the debut, filling the record with positive consciousness-raising, both cultural ("Acknowledge Your Own History," "Black Woman," "Beyond This World") and spiritual (the title cut, "In Dayz 2 Come"); there are even the occasional lyrical asides concerning good dietary habits. All of this makes Done By the Forces of Nature one of the most intellectual hip-hop albums released up to that point, but as before, the group tempered their cerebral bent with a healthy sense of humor and fun. Thanks to the improved production, the J.Beez are able to take it to the dancefloor better than ever before, and toss in some pure, good-time, booty-shaking grooves in the hits "What U Waitin' For" and "U Make Me Sweat." There's also "Belly Dancin' Dina," a narrative that echoes the playful come-ons of the debut, and proves that progressive thinking and respect for women don't necessarily have to cool the libido. Late in the album, the posse cut "Doin' Our Own Dang" offers the chance to hear most of The Native Tongues -- Tribe, De La, and Latifah -- dropping rhymes all in one place. Through it all, the J.Beez construct an eclectic musical backdrop borrowed from jazz, early R&B, funk, African music, and more. Even if Straight out the Jungle was the historical landmark, Done By the Forces of Nature feels more realized in many respects, and is arguably the more satisfying listen. ~ Steve Huey, All Music Guide

Afrika Baby Bam - Vocals
Mike Gee - Vocals
DJ Sammy B - Scratches
DJ Red Alert - Mixing
Dr. Shane Faber - Keyboards

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Erykah Badu - Baduizm (1997)

Erykah Badu - Baduizm
SOUL | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 401MB | 58:22
Kedar 1997

01. Rimshot (Intro)
02. On & On
03. Appletree
04. Otherside of the Game
05. Sometimes (Mix #9)
06. Next Lifetime
07. Afro (Freestyle Skit)
08. Certainly
09. 4 Leaf Clover
10. No Love
11. Drama
12. Sometimes...
13. Certainly (Flipped It)
14. Rimshot (Outro)

Two years after D'Angelo brought the organic sound and emotional passion of R&B to the hip-hop world with 1995's Brown Sugar, Erykah Badu's debut performed a similar feat. While D'Angelo looked back to the peak of smooth '70s soul, though, Badu sang with a grit and bluesiness reminiscent of her heroes, Nina Simone and Billie Holiday. "On & On" and "Appletree," the first two songs on Baduizm, illustrated her talent at singing soul with the qualities of jazz. With a nimble, melodic voice owing little to R&B from the past 30 years, she phrased at odds with the beat and often took chances with her notes. Like many in the contemporary rap world, though, she also had considerable talents at taking on different personas; "Otherside of the Game" is a poetic lament from a soon-to-be single mother who just can't forget the father of her child. Erykah Badu's revolution in sound -- heavier hip-hop beats over organic, conscientious soul music -- was responsible for her breakout, but many of the songs on Baduizm don't hold up to increased examination. For every intriguing track like "Next Lifetime," there's at least one rote R&B jam like "4 Leaf Clover." Jazz fans certainly weren't confusing her with Cassandra Wilson -- Badu had a bewitching voice, and she treasured her notes like the best jazz vocalists, but she often made the same choices, the hallmark of a singer rooted in soul, not jazz. Though many fans would dislike (and probably misinterpret) the comparison, she's closer to Diana Ross playing Billie Holiday -- as she did in the 1972 film Lady Sings the Blues -- than Holiday herself. ~ John Bush, All Music Guide

Erykah Badu - Keyboards, Vocals
Ahmir Thompson - Drums
Ron Carter - Bass
Ike Lee - Keyboards
James Poyser - Keyboards
Tone Da Backbone - Keyboards
Bob Power - Guitar, Keyboards

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Doc Powell - Cool Like That (2004)

Doc Powell - Cool Like That
JAZZ | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 289MB | 46:42
Heads Up 2004

01. Push
02. Cool Like That
03. Listen Up   
04. Sweet G
05. Soul Cry Out
06. Let It Be   
07. You Mean More to Me   
08. Hatujambo
09. To the East
10. Let It Be (Vocal)
11. More to Me

The veteran R&B sideman and popular smooth jazz guitarist usually lets his listeners know the vibe based on his album titles, from the Grover Washington, Jr.-influenced blues-soul of Inner City Blues to his most popular, Laid Back. On his critically acclaimed Heads Up debut, 97th and Columbus, the native New Yorker -- who titled the disc after the location of the classic Manhattan club Mikell's, where he did some serious shedding in the '80s -- paid homage to his eclectic roots, fashioning a tribute to, among others, chief influences Wes Montgomery, George Benson, Chet Atkins, and Ramsey Lewis. Focusing on touches of hip-hop, old-school soul, and slick in-the-pocket grooves, Cool Like That blends elements of his past successes with a love for classic rock (via a modern twist on the Beatles' "Let It Be"), a taste of East Coast jazz fusion ("To the East"), and a spiritual and densely percussive, African-tinged journey with lyrics in the Kenyan language ("Hatujambo"). He always surrounds himself with the best on the L.A. studio scene -- this time, that roster includes saxmen Michael Lington and Ron Brown, keyboardist Kevin Toney, trumpeter Mark Ledford, bassist Reggie Hamilton, and percussionist Munyungo Jackson. Also appearing on the opening track, "Push," is longtime pal Kirk Whalum. ~ Jonathan Widran, All Music Guide

Doc Powell - Guitar
Freddie Flewellen - Bass
Reggie Hamilton    - Moog
Kevin Toney - Piano
Michael Bereal - Fender
Michael Lington - Saxophone
Munyungo Jackson - Percussion
Kirk Whalum - Tenor Saxophone
 Ron Brown - Clarinet, Tenor Saxophone

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Mtume - You Me & He (1984)

Mtume - You Me & He
FUNK | FLAC | CUE | LOG | COVERS | 229MB | 40:20
Epic 1984

1. C.O.D.
2. You Are My Sunshine
3. You, Me and He
4. I Simply Like
5. Prime Time
6. Tie Me Up
7. Sweet for You & Me
8. To Be or Not to Bop

This was one of Mtume's '80s "sophisti-funk" projects, with a mix of socially conscious lyrics, love songs, and uptempo cuts, plus collective vocals and sparing production and arrangements. The title cut was a huge R&B hit, peaking at number two and even generating some crossover pop action. Mtume got two other R&B smashes, one in the Top 20, and the album proved one of his best. ~ Ron Wynn, All Music Guide

James Mtume - Conga, Keyboards, Vocals
Tawatha Agee - Guitar, Vocals
Raymond Jackson - Bass
Philip Field - Keyboards
Ed Tree Moore - Guitar
Kevin Robinson - Guitar
Steve Becker - Drums
Clarence Brice - Guitar
Curt Jones - Guitar
Ira Siegel - Guitar
Kirth Atkins - Scratching
Tommy Fortune - Saxophone
David Frank - Synthesizer
Vincent Henry - Saxophone
Dunn Pearson - Synthesizer
Bernie Worrell - Synthesizer
Angel Omar Colon - Scratching

Monday, March 03, 2014

Bobbi Humphrey - Satin Doll (1974)

Bobbi Humphrey - Satin Doll
JAZZ | WAVPACK | CUE | LOG | PNG | 314MB | 44:01
Blue Note 1974

1. New York Times
2. Satin Doll   
3. San Francisco Lights
4. Ladies Day
5. Fun House   
6. My Little Girl
7. Rain Again
8. You Are the Sunshine of My Life

Named after Duke Ellington's classic "Satin Doll" -- which producers Fonce Mizell and Freddie Perren give a '70s feel here -- this delightful LP is further indication of Bobbi Humphrey's God-given gifts. "Ladies Day" is syncopated and spacy; Humphrey's flute stalks the groove like a hungry cat. Everyone seems awestruck on "San Francisco Lights"; the tribute to the Golden Gate City opens with some shimmering effects and never progresses above a waltz tempo. Like a good painting, something new is revealed every time you hear this one. Humphrey's sweet, sensitive soprano voice shines on "My Little Girl," a song about her baby girl. Beam with the new mom as she relates the joys her baby has brought her. A tasty rendition of Stevie Wonder's "You Are the Sunshine of My Life" is done in straight roadhouse style. The superb midtempo "New York Times" is cool contemporary fusion, and Humphrey blows in, out, around, over, and under the airy percolating track. You have no heart if you can't feel the pain on "Rain Again," a moody, somber instrumental. This album isn't as compelling as Blacks and Blues, but is far more impressive than the jazz fusion happening at the same time. ~ Andrew Hamilton, All Music Guide

Bobbi Humphrey - Flute, Vocals
Harvey Mason, Sr. - Drums
Phil Davis - Moog
King Errisson - Conga
Don Preston - Moog
Freddie Perren - Vocals
Melvin Ragin - Guitar
Chuck Rainey - Bass
John Rowin - Guitar
Roger Sainte - Percussion
Stephanie Spruill - Percussion
Fonce Mizell - Piano, Fender Rhodes, Clavinet
Jerry Peters - Piano, Trumpet, Clavichord, Clavinet
Larry Mizell - Piano, Fender Rhodes, Arp, Clavinet

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Talib Kweli - Right About Now [Sucka Free Mix CD] (2005)

Talib Kweli - Right About Now [Mix CD]
HIP HOP | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 359MB | 49:47
Koch 2005

01. Right About Now             
02. Drugs, Basketball & Rap 
03. Who Got It         
04. Fly That Knot
05. Ms. Hill        
06. Flash Gordon            
07. Supreme Supreme
08. The Beast        
09. Roll Off Me    
10. Rock On            
11. Where You Gonna Run
12. Two & Two

With his dazzlingly impressive flow and his razor-sharp, politically conscious rhymes, Talib Kweli is one of the most consistent and imposing figures on the post-millennial hip-hop scene. Right About Now has all the hallmarks of Kweli's style, and though he has received a fair amount of critical attention, he rejects self-aggrandizing themes to continue rapping about the streets ("Drugs, Basketball, & Rap") and artists he admires ("Ms. Hill," a song feting Lauryn Hill, with a unique, sped-up Ben Kweller sample). Kweli is also flanked by some excellent guests here, including MF Doom ("Fly That Knot"), newcomer Papoose (who lays down some serious mike skills on "The Beast"), and his old collaborator Mos Def ("Supreme, Supreme"). With its bevy of provocative beats and surplus of smart, top-drawer rhyming, Right About Now is a must for all hip-hop heads.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Barry White - Stone Gon (1973)

Barry White - Stone Gon
SOUL | WAVPACK | CUE | LOG | COVERS | 231MB | 38:07
20th Century Fox 1973

1. Girl It's True, Yes I'll Always Love You
2. Honey Please, Can't Ya See
3. You're My Baby
4. Hard To Believe That I Found You
5. Never Never Gonna Give You Up

Stone Gon' was the second release in an incredible run of sensually charged titles White produced during the first half of the '70s. His patented mix of love monologues and rich vocal dynamics would come to mark the best songs of the period, including the two chart-toppers here, "Honey Please, Can't Ya See" and "Never, Never Gonna Give Ya Up." Of course, White's inventive arrangements and crack band only add to the stock of these soulful pop excursions. And beyond the hits, tracks like "You're My Baby" and "Hard to Believe That I Found You" maintain the high standard, compliments of mesmerizing backdrops and more vocal seduction; with wine and candlelight already casting a spell, it's just a matter of time before White's supremely tranquil delivery and blissed-out wash of strings and saxophone will cause the amatory to completely lose it. Bringing things back to earth, White displays unerring sensitivity on "Girl It's True, Yes I'll Always Love You," a love song as sincere and sanctified as any he's made. Essential listening. ~ Stephen Cook, All Music Guide

Barry White - Piano, Vocals
Love Unlimited - Vocals
Love Unlimited Orchestra - Instrumentation

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Barry White - Let The Music Play (1976)

Barry White - Let The Music Play
SOUL | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 446MB | 60:22
20th Century 1976

01. I Don't Know Where the Love Has Gone
02. If You Know, Won't You Tell Me
03. I'm So Blue and You Are Too
04. Baby, We Better Try to Get It Together
05. You See the Trouble with Me
06. Let the Music Play
07. Let the Music Play (Single)
08. Let the Music Play (Instrumental)
09. Let the Music Play (Throwback Mix)
10. Let the Music Play (Deluxe Mix)
11. Let the Music Play (Alternate)

In between his run of gold in the first half of the '70s and a pre-comeback sabbatical in the '80s, Barry White produced this top-notch album in 1976 as one of a long line of releases on the 20th Century label. While not full of any Top Ten pop hits, the six tracks do feature minor successes in "Baby, We Better Try to Get It Together," "You See the Trouble with Me" (co-written with White's guitarist at the time, Ray Parker, Jr.), and the title track. White's disco arrangements are of the highest order here, full of sophisticated orchestrations and silky but solid funk-lite rhythm tracks. The lyrical content, though, does not speak of the endless nights of lovemaking and blossoming relationships addressed in earlier songs, but instead focuses on the hurdles and downside of love. White expertly couples his subtle vocal delivery with just the right amount of pathos to highlight the lover on the outs. Something of an overlooked gem, Let the Music Play is a must for Barry White fans and qualifies as a fine choice for listeners looking for something beyond the singer's base of hits. ~ Stephen Cook, All Music Guide

Barry White - Piano, Vocals
Love Unlimited Orchestra - Instrumentation

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Angie Stone - Mahogany Soul (2001)

Angie Stone - Mahogany Soul
SOUL | WAVPACK | CUE | LOG | ARTWORK | 570MB | 74:49
J 2001

01. Soul Insurance    
02. Brotha    
03. Pissed Off
04. More Than a Woman    
05. Snowflakes
06. Wish I Didn't Miss You
07. Easier Said Than Done
08. Bottles & Cans    
09. The Ingredients of Love
10. What U Dyin' For
11. Makings of You (Interlude)
12. Mad Issues
13. If It Wasn't
14. 20 Dollars
15. Life Goes On
16. The Heat (Outro)
17. Brotha (Part 2)
18. Time of the Month

Accomplished neo-soul queen Angie Stone's second solo outing, Mahogany Soul, delivers more of the organic, gritty, rootsy yet sophisticated soul which put her on the map as a solo artist. The production is great and the songs are funky, mature, and intelligent, but when she truly shines is when she actually spreads her wings and glides away from her neo-soul trappings, which she manages effortlessly. The album's true gem is the smoldering, gorgeous, aching "Wish I Didn't Miss You," which pulls forward with an unstoppable beat and features a stellar, yearning performance from Miss Stone. Other highlights include the mesmerizing first single (produced by Raphael Saadiq), "Brotha," which draws the listener in with its atypical, almost hypnotizing beat. "Snowflakes" is a lighter-than-air, breezy winner, and her duet with Musiq Soulchild, "The Ingredients of Love," is silky, funky, and sweet. The album tends to wane toward the second half, with just a little too much emphasis on the neo-soul recipe, but nonetheless remains engaging with other winners like "20 Dollars," the sweet and easy "Life Goes On," and the organ-enhanced "Time of the Month" popping up to maintain the listener's interest. Despite a few lulls, Mahogany Soul stands as one of the best R&B albums of 2001 and keeps the listener anxiously waiting to see what Angie Stone will do next. ~ Jose F. Promis, All Music Guide

Angie Stone - Fender, Bass, Vocals
Chucky T. - Bass, Drums
Jamal Peoples - Organ
Dewey Browder - Bass
Joe Kwimbee - Bass
Cliff Lighty - Vocals
Larry Peoples - Bass
Bob Power - Guitar
Paul Litteral - Trumpet
Eric Lorde - Keyboards
Ivan Neville - Hammond
Jonathan DuBose - Guitar
Rodney Davis - Keyboards
Aubrey Dayle - Percussion
Francesco Romano - Guitar
Reginald Hines - Alto Saxophone
Robert Eldridge - Tenor Saxophone
Jamar Jones - Organ, Fender Rhodes

Friday, February 07, 2014

Stevie Wonder - In Square Circle (1985)

Stevie Wonder - In Square Circle
SOUL | FLAC | CUE | LOG | COVERS | 306MB | 49:24
Motown 1985

01. Part-Time Lover
02. I Love You Too Much
03. Whereabouts
04. Stranger on the Shore of Love
05. Never in Your Sun
06. Spiritual Walkers
07. Land of La La
08. Go Home
09. Overjoyed
10. It's Wrong (Apartheid)

"Overjoyed" ranks with Stevie's better ballads, but it's sappy; the peppy "Part-Time Lover" really is classic Stevie, but it's so commercially oriented it's off-putting. And the rest is thin; all of the tunes grow on you, but too often they're tangled in a web of fast-paced, sequenced synths. The running times all push up dangerously close to five minutes, and the lyrics are embarassing ("Spiritual Walkers," with tons of grating synth; "Land Of La La"; "It's Wrong (Apartheid)," complete with South African vocal chorus). Still, there's some 70s magic in here somewhere ("Never In Your Sun"), so it's worth buying once you have his other records. --James Alroy,

Friday, January 31, 2014

Zachary Breaux - Uptown Groove (1997)

Zachary Breaux - Uptown Groove
SMOOTH | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 442MB | 64:38
Zebra 1997

01. Breakfast At The Epiphany
02. Cafe Reggio
03. I Told You
04. Never Can Say Goodbye
05. The Thrill Is Gone
06. After 2:00 AM On The West Coast   
07. All Blues
08. Back Into Time   
09. Uptown Groove   
10. Flavors Of My Mind   
11. The 135th St. Theme
12. After 2:00 AM On The East Coast   
13. I Love This Life

Guitarist Zachary Breaux, who tragically died just a few months after recording this CD (his debut), was a potentially great guitarist with a style coming from George Benson. In fact, his solos are generally more memorable than the purposely commercial material on this set, which largely consists of melodic, jazzy funk jams, usually with rather basic electronic rhythms. The cover versions of "All Blues" (which is given simplified harmonies) and "The Thrill Is Gone" (Breaux's one vocal) are lightweight throwaways, but most of the other selections show off the guitarist's obvious talents as a player; "After 2:00 AM on the East Coast" (a purely acoustic piece with a catchy melody) matches Breaux quite successfully with fellow guitarist Ted Dunbar. The final selection, ironically titled "I Love This Life," is quite odd, for it has Breaux interviewing Dunbar about his life over an overdubbed two-guitar quintet jam (which is sometimes too loud). Among the other guest musicians are flutist Hubert Laws, bassist Brian Bromberg and pianist Renee Rosnes. A diverse and sadly final statement from a fine player. ~ Scott Yanow, All Music Guide

Zachary Breaux - Guitar, Synthesizer
Harvey Mason - Drums
Hubert Laws - Flute
Larry Nash - Drums
Lewis Nash - Drums
Kenny Davis - Bass
Gary Herbig - Horn
Harry Kim - Horn
Neil Larsen - Organ
Ted Dunbar - Guitar
Brian Bromberg - Bass
Renee Rosnes - Piano
Lee Oskar - Harmonica
Rob Mullins - Keyboards
Steve Lukather - Guitar
Rex Rideout - Synthesizer
Jeff Lorber - Synthesizer
Luis Enrique - Percussion
Mark Portmann - Synthesizer


Thursday, January 30, 2014

Talib Kweli - Gutter Rainbows (2011)

Talib Kweli - Gutter Rainbows
RAP | FLAC | CUE | LOG | COVER | 348MB | 49:11
Javotti Media 2011

01. After the Rain
02. Gutter Rainbows
03. So Low
04. Palookas
05. Mr. International
06. I'm On One
07. Wait for You
08. Ain't Waiting
09. Cold Rain
10. Friends & Family
11. Tater Tot
12. How You Love Me
13. Uh Oh
14. Self Savior

Here's a phrase I haven't heard too often: "What the fuck was Kweli thinking?" I know that as far as conscious-skewing MCs go, Talib Kweli's had his share of detractors-- mostly people who consider him too reliant on pop-culture metaphors or just plain don't like his voice-- but he's never managed to stumble his way into alienating the audience he already has. And while he hasn't always been quite as breathlessly venerated as peers like Common or Mos Def, he's also never dropped a Universal Mind Control or a True Magic, a fanbase-disillusioning pratfall that lacks everything the faithful like about him. (At least, not too prominently-- his one big detour, the electro-damaged pastel-stripe-rap side project Idle Warship, got one of those quietly promoted free-download releases in 2009, the equivalent of a big-budget action movie released in mid-January.) If that means Talib Kweli has spent his solo career playing it safe, it also means he's as close as there is to a sure bet in indie rap: He's even less likely o disappoint fans than he is to shake up their preconceptions. His latest release, Gutter Rainbows, is one of those artistically self-sufficient, post-Internet records that's been created, assembled, and channeled through means completely independent of the mainstream record industry, and yet it doesn't demonstrate a drastic change in Kweli's style at all. That probably says more about the relative freedom Kweli's had throughout his career than anything; when a solitary (and actually pretty good) beat on Eardrum is the closest he's ever come to quote-unquote selling out, creative control has never really seemed like an issue. And while there's an album in the works that Kweli has claimed will be a major departure from his usual lyrical persona-- the tellingly titled Prisoner of Consciousness-- Gutter Rainbows doesn't sound like a jaded effort from an artist who's dissatisfied with his normal routine. In short, it's familiar without feeling rote. Kweli still takes criminal entrepreneurs and gun-clap talk to task with flippant punchline dismissals on the where-I'm-from title track, still holds fast to his roots with a humble gratitude on "Friends & Family", and still consistently makes being scholarly sound like a good way to throw your weight around. His learned, nice-guy approach can switch over into good-natured ego-tripping when he wants to, but it doesn't eclipse the sentimentality at his core. Sure, Kweli brags about racking up frequent-flyer miles in Virgin Atlantic first class ("Mr. International"), but it's only so he can go overseas to connect with fans across the world. And even when he big-ups himself for his cocksmanship ("Ain't Waiting"), he can't help but put it in fairy-tale romantic terms that invoke Peter Pan and The Princess Bride. Yeah, I know-- at least it's not in hashtag form. And besides, everyone who hasn't been put off by Kweli's brushes with cue-the-rimshot corniness by now should recognize that he's had one of the more impressive lyrical-rapper flows going. If his metaphor/simile lyrics can be a mixed bag, the way he unfolds them against the backing tracks-- throwing his bars off-kilter, switching from casually conversational to elaborately virtuosic, and tweaking his emphases mid-line-- is worth hearing just for the way he plays both with and against the rhythm, a soloist where other voices are content to just riff. The beats on Gutter Rainbows are tight-enough neo-soul by committee-- 13 producers handle 14 tracks -- and most of it sounds like faintly modernized versions of Rawkus-circa-2002 boom-bap, with the occasional outlier in the form of a post-"Hello Brooklyn" old-school banger (Khrysis' "I'm on One") or atmospheric synthesizer dirge (Blaq Toven's "How You Love Me"). But isolating the beats from the rapper seems futile; this is Kweli's most comfortable turf, and he clicks with it as an MC who works like an ensemble cast member. When it hits on all cylinders-- the Ski Beatz-produced gospel-soul piano avalanche of "Cold Rain" being the best of several highlights-- it's hard to blame him for sticking to what he knows. --Nate Patrin,

Sade - Stronger Than Pride (1988) US Pressing

Sade - Stronger Than Pride
VOCAL | FLAC | CUE | LOG | COVERS | 303MBS | 47:46
Epic 1988
US Pressing

 01. Love Is Stronger Than Pride             
02. Paradise        
03. Nothing Can Come Between Us         
04. Haunt Me       
05. Turn My Back on You        
06. Keep Looking       
07. Clean Heart      
08. Give It Up        
09. Never Thought I'd See the Day      
10. Siempre Hay Esperanza

 Like Wally Pipp, who took a day off from the Yankee lineup and was permanently replaced by Lou Gehrig, Sade has risked usurpation by more talented players during her long weekend away from recording. In that three-year break, the soft-female-soul market, which the remarkable success of her 1984 debut stimulated, has been filled by a rush of other artists, some far superior (Anita Baker, Regina Belle), some nearly inept (Swing Out Sister). But Sade needn't worry about being eclipsed by more talented singers – the key to her appeal is not the pure prowess of her voice but its poise and presence. In lieu of Baker's gospel-based emotions, Sade offers cool composure. She has designed a distinctive sound and established herself as a diva simply by assuming the image of one.  it's possible, Stronger Than Pride is even wispier than Sade's two previous albums; it's so thin and understated that it leaves a mist hanging over the turntable (or, more likely, the CD player). Her lyrics are mostly brief pillow notes, with ttheir hooks chanted over and over. Serving as producer for the first time, Sade curbs Stuart Matthewman's dramatic sax lines, the crucial ingredient of "Smooth Operator," in favor of an ensemble grace centered on the deft bump of Paul Denman's bass. Brisk urban tracks like the hit "Paradise" alternate with acoustic material inspired by Brazilian bossa nova, but the sensual ambiance is soon spoiled by the dearth of melodies; the album is so tasteful and restrained it's dull. ---Rob Tannebaum - Rolling  Stone

Sade Adu - Vocals
Andrew Hale - Piano
Paul Denman - Bass
Gavyn Wright - Violin
Jake Jacas - Trombone
Gordon Hunter - Guitar
Leroy Osbourne - Vocals
James McMillan - Trumpet
Stuart Matthewman - Saxophone
Martin Ditcham - Percussion, Drums

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Angie Stone - Rich Girl (2012)

Angie Stone - Rich Girl
SOUL | FLAC | CUE | LOG | COVER | 352MB | 50:38
Saguaro Road 2012

01. Intro: Real Music
02. Do What U Gotta D
03. Backup Plan
04. Proud of Me
05. First Time
06. Guilty
07. Interlude
08. Alright
09. Livin It Up
10. Rich Girl
11. Right in Front of Me
12. I Can’t Take it
13. Push N' Pull
14. U Lit My Fire
15. Sisters

Those who have found something to enjoy in each one of Angie Stone's albums might be confused by the singer's liner notes for Rich Girl, the singer's first album for Saguaro Road. She alludes to having done too much collaborative work in the recent past, declaring "I shaved a lot of my originality off when merging with so many other people." Her outside projects haven't been all that numerous, and she is joined here by around two dozen fellow songwriters and roughly half as many co-producers. On one hand, who's to argue with an artist who says her new work is more herself than the material from her recent past? On the other, this album doesn't offer as many high points as her two previous Stax albums, and it's as scattered quality-wise as it is stylistically diverse. Stone's beaming, easygoing nature and typically excellent vocals save the majority of the substandard material. Some fans will be dismayed by the shortage of throwbacks to classic soul, but "U Lit My Fire" is a knockout, one that begins with a sly Taana Gardner fake-out before settling into one of her most seductive numbers. If Stone really wanted to get back to basics, she could have made a whole album with the terminally undervalued Mike City. His smacking but smoothened grooves are a great fit, heard on the synthesizer-laced disco funk of "Backup Plan" and the stout hip-hop bounce of "Right in Front of Me" (the latter something like Donell Jones' "Spend the Night" on weight gainer). ~ Andy Kellman, All Music Guide

Angie Stone - Vocals
Alvin Speights - Bass
Bruce Robinson - Guitar
Reger Smith - Bass
James Owens - Guitar
Levi Stephens - Guitar
Korey Bowie - Guitar, Synthesizer
Malcolm Jamal Warner - Bass, Vocals
Demond Mickens - Fender, Bass, Piano

Monday, January 27, 2014

Various Artists - Soca Gold 2010 (2010)

Various Artists - Soca Gold 2010
SOCA | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 530MB | 60:54
VP 2010

01. Rikki Jai – Barman
02. Donae’o – Party hard
03. Alison Hinds – Gimme De Juk Juk
04. Patrice Roberts – Work It
05. Busy Signal & Machel Montano – Wooeeii Gal Wooeeii
06. Edwin Yearwood – Carnival On My Mind
07. Gyptian – Hold You (soca refix)
08. Roy Cape feat Blaxx – Huntin
09. Jamesy P – Ants In Yuh Sugar Pan
10. Fadda Fox – Staggerah
11. Peter Ram – Tattoo Farm
12. Ravi B & Problem Child – Ah Drinka
13. Hunter & Skinny Fabolous – Puncheon
14. Farmer Nappy & General Grant – Looking To Wine
15. Lyrikal – All Over De Gyal
16. Da Mastamind – Deputy Woman

Soca music's big guns come together for Soca Gold 2010. The hottest collection of Soca hits in the market! Soca Gold 2010 also features an exclusive Soca remix of Gyptian's monster hit "Hold You" plus Rikki Jai "Barman" and "Looking to Wine" by Farmer Nappy & General Grant. The CD/DVD package includes exclusive footage from T&T Carnival 2010 plus, 7 music videos and behind the scenes footage from the wildest party of the year!


Friday, January 24, 2014

De La Soul - 3 Feet High and Rising [Deluxe Edition]

De La Soul - 3 Feet High and Rising [Deluxe Edition]
DOUBLE CD | HIP HOP | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 709MB | 113:19
Tommy Boy 1989

01. Intro
02. The Magic Number
03. Change in Speak
04. Cool Breeze on the Rocks
05. Can U Keep a Secret
06. Jenifa Taught Me
07. Ghetto Thang
08. Transmitting Live from Mars
09. Eye Know
10. Take It Off
11. A Little Bit of Soap
12. Tread Water
13. Potholes in My Lawn
14. Say No Go
15. Do as De La Does
16. Plug Tunin
17. De La Orgee
18. Buddy
19. Description
20. Me Myself and I
21. L.I.F.E.
22. I Can Do Anything
23. D.A.I.S.Y. Age
24. Plug Tunin

01. Freedom of Speak
02. Strickly Dan Stuckie
03. Jenifa (Taught Me) (12")
04. Skip to My Loop
05. Potholes in My Lawn (12")
06. Me Myself and I (Oblapos Mode)
07. Ain't Hip to be Labeled a Hippie
08. What's More
09. Brain Washed Follower
10. Say No Go (New Keys Vocal)
11. The Mack Daddy on the Left
12. Double Huey Skit
13. Ghetto Thang (Ghetto Ximer)
14. Eye Know (The Know It All Mix)

The most inventive, assured, and playful debut in hip-hop history, 3 Feet High and Rising not only proved that rappers didn't have to talk about the streets to succeed, but also expanded the palette of sampling material with a kaleidoscope of sounds and references culled from pop, soul, disco, and even country music. Weaving clever wordplay and deft rhymes across two dozen tracks loosely organized around a game-show theme, De La Soul broke down boundaries all over the LP, moving easily from the groovy my-philosophy intro "The Magic Number" to an intelligent, caring inner-city vignette named "Ghetto Thang" to the freewheeling end-of-innocence tale "Jenifa Taught Me (Derwin's Revenge)." Rappers Posdnuos and Trugoy the Dove talked about anything they wanted (up to and including body odor), playing fast and loose on the mic like Biz Markie. Thinly disguised under a layer of humor, their lyrical themes ranged from true love ("Eye Know") to the destructive power of drugs ("Say No Go") to Daisy Age philosophy ("Tread Water") to sex ("Buddy"). Prince Paul (from Stetsasonic) and DJ Pasemaster Mase led the way on the production end, with dozens of samples from all sorts of left-field artists -- including Johnny Cash, the Mad Lads, Steely Dan, Public Enemy, Hall & Oates, and the Turtles. The pair didn't just use those samples as hooks or drumbreaks -- like most hip-hop producers had in the past -- but as split-second fills and in-jokes that made some tracks sound more like DJ records. Even "Potholes on My Lawn," which samples a mouth harp and yodeling (for the chorus, no less), became a big R&B hit. If it was easy to believe the revolution was here from listening to the rapping and production on Public Enemy's It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back, with De La Soul the Daisy Age seemed to promise a new era of positivity in hip-hop. [Tommy Boy's 1989 special edition included an additional CD of bonus material.] ~ John Bush, All Music Guide

Posdnuos - Vocals
Trugoy - Vocals
Mase - Scratches

Q-Tip - Guest Artist
Red Alert - Guest Artist
Jungle Brothers - Guest Artist

Dave Koz - Dave Koz (1990)

Dave Koz - Dave Koz
JAZZ | FLAC | CUE | LOG | COVERS | 360MB | 51:53
Capitol 1990

01. So Far From Home
02. Emily
03. Give It Up
04. Nothing But The Radio On
05. Castle Of Dreams
06. Endless Summer Nights
07. Love Of My Life
08. Art Of Key Noise
09. Perfect Stranger
10. If Love Is All We Have
11. Yesterday's Rain

Fans of saxophonist Dave Koz from either his days playing EWI with the Rippingtons or his tours with lookalike pop star Richard Marx waited a long few years for this explosive debut, and Koz certainly delivers the goods with an absolutely smashing Sanborn-esque display of chops and seduction. The Marx effect is a definite plus, as Koz does wonders with a cover of the singer's "Endless Summer Nights" and he co-wrote one of the disc's best originals: "Give It Up" with Marx and Jeff Lorber (who is one of the album's handful of producers). As in his previous work as a sideman, Koz proves an innovative player throughout. This project not only launched one of the great smooth jazz sax careers of the '90s, but it was one of the first genre albums to spawn hit singles (the ballads "Emily" and "Castle of Dreams") and VH1 videos. Pure dynamite, but Koz would later top even himself. ~ Jonathan Widran, All Music Guide

Dave Koz - Saxophone, Guitar
Steve Reid - Percussion
Tom Scott - Synthesizer
Jim Lang - Keyboards
Carlos Rios - Guitar
Cole Basque -Vocals
Kevin Cloud - Snare Drum
Lenny Castro - Percussion
Randy Jackson - Fretless Bass
Paulinho Da Costa - Percussion
Matt Bissonette - Fretless Bass
Jeff Lorber - Guitar, Keyboards


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Gil Scott-Heron - Revolution Will Not Be Televised (1974)

Gil Scott-Heron - Revolution Will Not Be Televised
Flying Dutchman 1974

01. The Revolution Will Not Be Televised
02. Sex Education: Ghetto Style
03. The Get Out of the Ghetto Blues
04. No Knock
05. Lady Day and John Coltrane
06. Pieces of a Man
07. Home Is Where the Hatred Is
08. Brother
09. Save the Children
10. Whitey on the Moon
11. Did You Hear What They Said?
12. When You Are Who You Are
13. I Think I'll Call It Morning
14. A Sign of the Ages
15. Or Down You Fall
16. The Needle's Eye
17. The Prisoner

Spanning 1970-1972, this superb collection takes us back to Gil Scott-Heron's early years, when he was working with jazz producer Bob Thiele -- a man who had been in the studio with everyone from John Coltrane and Pharoah Sanders to Coleman Hawkins. But The Revolution Will Not Be Televised isn't a jazz collection per se; it's a collection of innovative R&B and spoken poetry that contains jazz influences and finds Scott-Heron employing such jazz musicians as flutist Hubert Laws and bassist Ron Carter. Like the Last Poets, Scott-Heron has been described as "one of the first rappers" -- and while he was hardly the first person to speak in rhyme to music, there are definitely parallels between angry sociopolitical poems like "Whitey on the Moon," "No Knock," and "Brother" and hip-hop commentary from the 1980s. Poetry, however, doesn't dominate this album -- most of the selections illustrate Scott-Heron's excellence as a singer, including "Home Is Where the Hatred Is," "Did You Hear What They Said?," and the poignant "Save the Children." One of the collection's less political tracks is "Lady Day and John Coltrane," an R&B classic that articulates how easily jazz can lift a person's spirits. The Revolution Will Not Be Televised isn't the last word on Scott-Heron's artistry -- he recorded many more treasures after leaving Flying Dutchman for Arista in 1975. But it's one of the collections to acquire if you're exploring his artistry for the first time. ~ Alex Henderson, All Music Guide

Gil Scott-Heron - Vocals, Organ, Piano
Brian Jackson - Piano
Ron Carter - Bass
Pretty Purdie - Drums
Jerry Jemmott - Bass
Burt Jones - Guitar
David Spinozza - Guitar
Eddie Knowles - Percussion
Charlie Saunders - Percussion
Hubert Laws - Alto Saxophone, Flute


Monday, January 20, 2014

Ronny Jordan - Light To Dark (1996)

Ronny Jordan - Light To Dark
JAZZ | FLAC | CUE | LOG | 300DPI | 350MB | 52:55
4th And Broadway 1996

01. Into The Light 
02. Homage  
03. It's You
04. The Law 
05. Fooled   
06. Closer Than Close 
07. I See You 
08. Downtime
09. Deep In My Heart
10. Laidback
11. Light To Dark
12. Last Goodbye

Ronny Jordan's Light to Dark demonstrates less of an acid-jazz and dance feel than his previous albums, preferring to stay closer to his funky soul-jazz roots. Though Jordan continues to grow as a guitarist -- his leads are fluid and seductive, his chord vamps tasty. ~ Leo Stanley, All Music Guide

Ronny Jordan - Guitar, Synthesizer, Vocals
Carl Brown - Vocals
Sola Akingbola - Percussion, Vocals
Joel Campbell - Organ, Vocoder, Fender, Piano

Friday, January 17, 2014

Stefon Harris - Black Action Figure (1999)

Stefon Harris - Black Action Figure
JAZZ | FLAC | CUE | LOG | PNG | 382MB | 56:55
Blue Note 1999

01. Club Madness             
02. Feline Blues    
03. There Is No Greater Love    
04. Of Things to Come        
05. After the Day Is Done    
06. Conversations at the Mess        
07. BlackActionFigure             
08. Collage        
09. You Stepped Out of a Dream        
10. Alovi        
11. Bass Vibes        
12. The Alchemist         
13. Chorale    
14. Faded Beauty

With his second album Black Action Figure, Stefon Harris still is finding his footing as an innovator, yet he is well on his way to developing his own exciting sense of style. At its core, this is fairly traditionalist hard bop, but there is energy and unpredictability to Harris' playing that makes it feel chancier -- and he does push harder at the borders of bop this time around. That added sense of adventure, along with the robust spirit of his supporting band, makes Black Action Figure another winner for Harris. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, All Music Guide

Stefon Harris - Vibraphone
Jason Moran - Piano
Tarus Mateen - Bass
Eric Harland - Drums
Steve Turre - Trombone
Greg Osby - Alto Saxophone
Gary Thomas - Tenor Saxophone, Flute