The Joe Beck Trio: Just Friends (2003)
This all-star date incorporates the aggressive electric sound of guitarist Joe Beck with the fusion bona fides of bassist Mark Egan and drummer Danny Gottlieb. These guys have been friends for some time and it shows in the excitement of the playing. Beck and his comrades mix it up rhythmically, sonically, electrically, and repertoire-wise. The group has no trouble taking on old ballads such as "I Love You" and "Just Friends" (check out Gottlieb’s brushes on the former and Egan’s full-throated approach on the latter.)
The trio pretty well keeps it between the ditches through-out the album until Beck’s & "Zanzibar" and "Get Ready" when the boys begin to stretch out and have fun. Egan gives a seamless solo on "Zanzibar." "Softly, As In a Morning Sunrise" is taken at a light-speed clip with out a lost note. There Will Never be Another You" is also taken at a fast clip and enjoys a fast Danny Gottlieb solo. & quot;Blues for Joe Farrell" becomes a bit psychedelic, showing off Beck’s rocking chops. Listening to this recording, it is hard for one to understand what Miles Davis was complaining about after the release of his expansive record Circle in the Round.
Track Listing: I Love You; Just Friend; Prelude to a Kiss; Get Ready; The Girl Next Door; Zanzibar; Softly as in a Morning Sunrise; Gentle Rain; There will Never Be Another You; Blues For Joe Farrell. (Total Time 57:47).
Personnel: Joe Beck-Guitar; Mark Egan-Bass; Danny Gottlieb-Drums.