107

Bonnie Bramlett and Mr. Groove Band: Roots, Blues & Jazz

By

Sign in to view read count
Bonnie Bramlett and Mr. Groove Band: Roots, Blues & Jazz
Everything old is new again! Bonnie Bramlett, a soulful rock star from the late 1960s (Delaney & Bonnie & Friends) and the first white Ikette in the Ike & Tina Turner Revue, never really went away. After contributing to some of the biggest rock/R&B/soul tunes, she turned to Christian music and in 2002 began a return to her soul roots via a series of new albums. Her latest work is on the Zoho label, most often associated with the downtown New York jazz scene.

Bramlett seems to have all of the musical pieces in place to mount yet another comeback—and that includes her band, Mr. Groove, as well as background singers like her daughter, Bekka Bramlett, and a number of Ikettes who performed with her long ago.

It seems to me that the title of this album ought to be shortened to Blues & Roots to more accurately reflect its contents. Although Bramlett still has a strong voice that is prone to raspiness when pushed on certain songs here, she seems to know how to craftily show a variety of vocal styles to keep her audience happy, and she seems at her best on the soulful Sam Cooke classic "A Change Is Gonna Come."

Songs like Chuck Berry's "No Particular Place To Go" and Stephen Stills' "Love the One You're With" present softer versions of the original that work in her favor. She treats the Joe Zawinul jazz classic "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" to the Johnny Watson-Larry Williams lyric, yielding another highlight. Bramlett's treatment of the standard "I'm Confessin'," done sotto voce, and also works, but on "That Lucky Old Sun" she strains to inject soulfulness into the song.

I suppose that I would like to go back to this album once in a while to decide where it is going and how my reaction changes. The jazz references are minimal, and I'm more reminded on occasion of Etta James, when her voice was deteriorating. In the meantime, the album remains a well-packaged product that should find an audience.

Visit Bonnie Bramlett on the web.

Track Listing

Love The One You're With; I Can Laugh About It Now; No Particular Place To Go; I'm Confessin'; Gotcha; That Lucky Old Sun; Mercy; Mercy; Mercy; A Change is Gonna Come; Carefree; Work Song; Love Hurts; Harlem Nocturne.

Personnel

Bonnie Bramlett: vocals, background vocals; Robbie Montgomery, Jessie Lucas, Bekka Bramlett, Chip Davis, Margie Cates, Steve Willets Calloway: background vocal; Tim Smith: bass; Roddy Smith: guitar; Steve Willets: piano; Mark Stallings: Hammond organ; Tim Gordon: saxes, flute; Donnie Marshall: drums, percussion; Bobby Ogdin: keyboards; Dan Sherrill: percussion.

Album information

Title: Roots, Blues & Jazz | Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Zoho Music

Post a comment about this album

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Read Django-shift
Django-shift
Rez Abbasi
Read West Meets East
West Meets East
Adam Shulman Septet
Read Fela's First
Fela's First
Fela Ransome Kuti & His Highlife Rakers
Read The Rise Up
The Rise Up
Mehmet Ali Sanlikol
Read New York Moment
New York Moment
JC Hopkins Biggish Band
Read Pollinator
Pollinator
Matt Ulery
Read Hug!
Hug!
Matt Wilson Quartet

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.