Make a difference: Support jazz online

Support All About Jazz Your friends at All About Jazz are looking for readers to help back our website upgrade project. Of critical importance, this project will result in a vastly improved design across all devices and will make future All About Jazz projects much easier to implement. Click here to learn more about this project including donation rewards.

177

George Benson: Standing Together

Robert Spencer By

Sign in to view read count
George Benson on autopilot, or as the title of one of these tunes has it, cruise control. There's nothing wrong musically with this disc: Benson's guitar playing is as bright and bouncy as ever, his singing is buoyant and attractive, and the arrangements are competent. But this is just another record in a long string of commercial smashes (and would-be commercial smashes) for George Benson, featuring George standing together with his millions, and it will no doubt make him some more. To paraphrase the Beatles whose tunes he so inventively reworked long ago on The Other Side of Abbey Road, there seems to be nothing George Benson can do that he hasn't done, nothing he can sing that hasn't been sung, etc.. Standing Together is a pretty funk record, but there is nothing on it that Benson fans haven't heard before.

There is a famous quote by Benson to the effect that it would be stupid for him to work hard making an "art" record that might sell 5000 copies, when he can make another million turning out another one of these. So, to put it kindly: This is not Mr. Benson's adventurous art record. This is "C-Smooth," "Standing Together," "All I Know," "Cruise Control," "Poquito Spanish, Poquito Funk" (oh, come on ), "Still Waters," "Fly By Night," "Back to Love," and "Keep Rollin'." Even these titles could be stuck onto 1000 other discs without anyone noticing anything amiss.

So what's art, anyway? George may be churning out anonymous funk, but it paid for his mansion and his Rolls. (He may not have those things. He may have given it all to charity.) Could be worse...


Title: Standing Together | Year Released: 1998 | Record Label: JJ-Tracks

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Live at Pyatt Hall CD/LP/Track Review Live at Pyatt Hall
by Jack Bowers
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Flying Heart CD/LP/Track Review Flying Heart
by Troy Dostert
Published: January 23, 2018
Read The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow CD/LP/Track Review The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow
by John Sharpe
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Solano Canyon CD/LP/Track Review Solano Canyon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Lucas CD/LP/Track Review Lucas
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: January 22, 2018
Read In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording CD/LP/Track Review In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: January 22, 2018
Read "Kisaragi" CD/LP/Track Review Kisaragi
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 17, 2017
Read "A Cast of Thousands" CD/LP/Track Review A Cast of Thousands
by Duncan Heining
Published: August 30, 2017
Read "Wobbly Dance Flower" CD/LP/Track Review Wobbly Dance Flower
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: September 22, 2017
Read "Forage" CD/LP/Track Review Forage
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 16, 2017
Read "Right Up On" CD/LP/Track Review Right Up On
by Troy Dostert
Published: July 12, 2017
Read "3rio" CD/LP/Track Review 3rio
by Pascal-Denis Lussier
Published: May 1, 2017