331

Eclectic Voices-Scott Stroman: Songs of the Spirit

By

Sign in to view read count
The first seven tracks of this top drawer album of choral works make up an oratorio for voices and assorted instruments appropriately titled "Songs of the Spirit". Written by Scott Stroman, it is a tribute to a higher being, not a groveling , no questions asked one, but rather an anthem of hope coupled with a realization of the beauty endowed us by a creator, if we will only open our eyes and hearts. The opening lines of "Through a Glass Ceiling ". And it's upward, and onward, and over we go to places where only the brave ever know" expresses the confidence and determination of the human spirit. There's an excellent Bobby Wellins' solo on this cut accenting the song's theme. But the realization that no matter how strong and determined the human sprit, weaknesses are often exposed in the face of extreme adversity and this frailty is expressed in "The Earth Trembled and Shook".The choir announces the theme of this old time gospel tune first with Scott Stroman's trombone and then with Bobby Wellins' tenor with punctuation from the rhythm section to provide the "hallelujahs". This track will have toes tapping, hands clapping and shoulders shaking. The last three tracks - - which are not from the pen of Stroman - - are anthems to a higher being in traditional African music. "Kuja Kwake Bwana" employs that call and response device found in the music of the continent of the high sky. This device is faithfully and compellingly replicated by the chorale.

There are three choral groups with more than 70 voices which have been combined to form the Eclectic Voices. Most of the voices are young ones which provides the enthusiasm, reverence and naivete necessary to make music like this work. There are some good vocal solos. While the liner notes list their names, they are not linked to the songs on which they solo, except for Brian Abrahams' vocal on "Together Alone". 33Jazz simply has to do a better job in crediting its performers in the notes. To the label's credit, the lyrics for these interesting melodies are reproduced in the notes.

All the instrumentalists on this album are first rate. Special mention, however, must be made on the percussive contribution made by Brian Abrahams who is uncanny in his ability to provide the correct percussive statement at the right time to accentuate the message delivered by the lyrics. This is an interesting, intelligent and well-performed 59 minutes of music and is highly recommended.

| Style: Vocal


Shop

More Articles

Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 26, 2017
Read This Is Nate Najar CD/LP/Track Review This Is Nate Najar
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Joy Comes Back CD/LP/Track Review Joy Comes Back
by James Nadal
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Apocalypse CD/LP/Track Review Apocalypse
by Julian Derry
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door CD/LP/Track Review The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 25, 2017
Read "Cada Fuego Es El Primero" CD/LP/Track Review Cada Fuego Es El Primero
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 20, 2016
Read "I Walk Amongst Humans" CD/LP/Track Review I Walk Amongst Humans
by Nicholas F. Mondello
Published: August 3, 2016
Read "A Multitude of Angels" CD/LP/Track Review A Multitude of Angels
by Geno Thackara
Published: December 2, 2016
Read "Intermetallic Compounds" CD/LP/Track Review Intermetallic Compounds
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 18, 2016
Read "Free for One" CD/LP/Track Review Free for One
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 31, 2016
Read "Early Americans" CD/LP/Track Review Early Americans
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 14, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!