This year in Smooth Jazz has been REALLY funky! Releases by artists such as Richard Elliot, Vincent Ingala, and the Rippingtons have definitely turned up the funk content of the music that we have been hearing.
Not to be outdone, Gerald Albright’s new release, G, showcases Gerald’s unmistakable style and smooth sax riffs. September 30th is the release date, and you will want to reserve your copy now!
Gerald Albright G Album Review
It is better to lead off an album with an uptempo track, right? Well, Taking Control is not only the opening track for this project, it is also a subtle message to let you know that he has control of the entire album. Gerald created all the horn sections himself, texturing alto, tenor and baritone around the lead melody, while handling the thick bottom via bass guitar.
G and Doug E features the incomparable Doug E. Fresh. This is a track I can hear at a street party on a farm summer day. It has an old school flair, and Doug E Fresh has just the right amount of MC…Not too much, but a good balance between sax and vocals.
If you are looking for classic Gerald Albright, then I Miss You is the one. This song is the great slow jam on the album, with just a hint of female backing vocals.
It is interesting that if the word funk is in the song title, then that song will probably be the funkiest one on the album. Funkism does not disappoint here. The bassline is on point, and Gerald goes toe to toe with the bass to make it a definite booty shaker!
Gerald plays tribute to his dear friend Frankie Beverly with Frankie B. After listening to the track, you can definitely hear those influences. Who doesn’t need to hear a Maze inspired song every now and then?
The classic song Lovely Day, has been re-made numerous times, but this version is well done. The track features Michael McDonald, but he does not sing all of the lead vocals. Gerald blows the sax for the first part of the verse, then McDonald’s silky voice cones in on the second part. He then sings the background on the hook. This is a duet between the horn and the voice. Oh, of course you have some Michael McDonald ad-libs in the end.
The R&B cut on the album is Boom Boom. This is a cut we may use in a future edition of the smooth jazz mix series. This one sounds it will fit right in.
Speaking of R&B, Albright hits the remake of Avant’s Read Your Mind right out of the park. It actually made me go back and listen to the original. Even though it is the same song, it is a joy to hear the two different interpretations of the track.
We give this album a two thumbs up. We have come to expect great things from Gerald Albright on every album release, and he exceeds all expectations!