Philip Bailey: Soul on Jazz (2002)
The voice is unmistakable, as are many of the songs, but it is Earth Wind & Fire’s falsettoed front man’s treatments of standards and contemporary classics that make this album an intriguing and rewarding listen. From a smoothed-out yet still funky take on "Compared to What" to a gospely version of "Nature Boy" and a saxy stroll through "Mercy Mercy Mercy," Philip Bailey offers his own perspectives on these jazz vocal favorites. He goes further, however, on tracks like Monk’s "Dear Ruby" and Joe Zawinul’s "My Indiscretions," which is given voice by Bailey but receives actual words by his son Sir Bailey. "Bop-Skip-Doodle" takes the timeless sound of scat jazz into the modern age with the help of composer DJ Smash. Also along for the smooth jazz ride on Soul On Jazz are the legendary likes of producer Bob Belden and the original Blues Brother himself, Lou Marini. So whether you like the uptown groove of Chick Corea’s "Sometime Ago," the lullaby vibe of Herbie Hancock’s "Tell Me a Bedtime Story" or the elemental mixture of Maurice White’s "Keep Your Head to the Sky," rest assured that Bailey will reach a high note for you.
Track Listing: 1. My Indiscretions 2. Dear Ruby 3. Compared To What 4. Nature Boy 5. Bop-Skip-Doodle 6. Unrestrained 7. Mercy, Mercy, Mercy 8. Keep Your Head To The Sky 9. Sometime Ago 10. Tell Me A Bedtime Story 11. On The Red Clay
Personnel: Philip Bailey -- vocals, timbales, DJ Smash -- programming Don Alias -- congas, percussion John Hart -- solo guitar Ronnie Cuber -- baritone saxophone Billy Kilson -- drums Mike "Dino" Campbell -- guitar Ira Coleman -- acoustic bass Lou Marini -- alto saxophone David Dyson -- bass David Whitworth -- background vocals Charmaine Cousins -- background vocals Billy Baker -- background vocals Bob Belden -- producer, soprano saxophone Scott Kinsey -- producer, keyboards Myron McKinley -- producer, piano, melodica, keyboards Scott Wendholt -- trumpet Don Corey Washington -- background vocals Alan Burroughs -- acoustic guitar Robert Brookins -- background vocals Daniel De Los Reyes -- congas