Millie Jackson — Millie Jackson Exposed: The Multi-Track Sessions Mixed By Steve Levine
A flawless batch of classics from Millie Jackson in the heart of her early years on Spring Records – maybe sounding better than ever here! Millie's raunchier style would come later on, but here she's working in styles that are a perfect mix of gritty and sweet – arrangements tailored perfectly to those characteristics in her sultry, smoky voice – and equally at home in sessions in Muscle Shoals, Philly or NYC. Covers the bases from moody southern soul, to tender ballads, to lightly soaring strings – and the mixes by Steve Levine really bring out the vibe of the original sessions, as closely as possible to the spirit and vision of the original recordings – a restoration as opposed to a revision. Includes "Sweet Music, Soft Lights & You" featuring Isaac Hayes, "House For Sale", "I'll Continue To Love You", "My Man, A Sweet Man", "I Cry", "If Loving You Is Wrong (I Don't Wanna Be Right)" and "It Hurts So Good" – plus "Kiss You All Over", "Bad Risk", "Never Change Lovers In The Middle Of The Night" and more. 12 tracks on the CD. ~ Dusty Groove
Pat Van Dyke – Hello Summer
The most summery, breeziest, soul jazz-steeped sounds we've heard from Pat Van Dyke! Pat covers a lot of territory on Hello Summer, a lot of it with a 70s jazzy soul vibe, but stretching much farther – with strains of reggae and breakbeat funk, bossa and more – and it's anything but a stylistic mishmash. It flows masterfully,most tracks blending into the next in a way that makes this a vital beginning-to-end listen. Along the way he gets some excellent solos on horns, Rhodes, Wurlitzer, guitar that make it that much deeper instrumentally, with titles that include "Lotus", "Chaos & Confusion", "Return Of the Bossa Break", "Like They Used To Say", "Go-Go", "Hello, Summer", "Blues For Benny", "Gutter Ball", "Stone Road" and "All I Need (Outro)". ~ Dusty Groove
Gary Brumburgh - Moonlight
For vocalist Gary Brumburgh, the lyrics of a song are like dialog from a play, and when he sings, he approaches the material much like an actor prepares for a role. The lyrics, along with the music, suggest to him a scene and a persona with distinct emotions and motivations. That technique allows him to pour himself into a song, creating a highly personalized rendition of the lyrics. Now, on Moonlight, Brumburgh’s second CD, his distinctive style takes center stage in an eclectic project of modern jazz tunes, songs from the Great American Songbook, and re-invented pop numbers from the 60’s and 70’s. Moonlight features some of the top Los Angeles jazz players, including several tunes performed by piano icon Terry Trotter. His son, Jamieson Trotter, a rising star in the jazz firmament, arranged the CD and plays piano on the other tunes. Gary Brumburgh is an appealing performer whose warm voice and sensitive approach to lyrics make Moonlight an engaging project and a superb introduction to a performer who is well-known to jazz aficionados in L.A. and is now poised to receive much wider recognition.