All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

18

Jose James: While You Were Sleeping

Mark F. Turner By

Sign in to view read count
Track review of "Simply Beautiful"

Jazz has always had a soft spot for pop music. Icons like trumpeter Louis Armstrong blessed the masses with his positivity and raspy voice in 1967's "What a Wonderful World" and saxophonist John Coltrane transformed Rodgers and Hammerstein's 1960 musical smash "My Favorite Things" into a swinging affair. Fast forward to 2014 as singer, songwriter and producer Jose James continues the practice with a fine rendition of 1972's "Simply Beautiful" by the one-time prince of R&B, vocalist Al Green.

James is a singer with a commanding presence, his tenor like velvet with exceptional range that includes folk, ethnic, and avant-soul with diverse shades and colors in his fifth album While You Were Sleeping. His boldness to cover Al Green's hit song is no small feat but he performs with empathy and expressiveness delivering a cover that still possesses much, if not all of Green's alluring magic. Nonetheless, James is a stylist and shapes the evocative lyrics with the aid of guitarist Brad Allen Williams's agile chords and Kris Bowers's organ undercurrents.

The key here through, is not only the song's classic melody, but also the performance by fellow Blue Note label mate/ trumpeter Takuya Kuroda who provides a spellbinding and lengthy solo that eddies and flows with James's smoky voice.

Track Listing: Simply Beautiful.

Personnel: Jose James: vocals; Kris Bowers: organ; Solomon Dorsey: bass; Takuya Kuroda: trumpet; Brad Allen Williams: guitar; Richard Spaven: drums.

Title: While You Were Sleeping | Year Released: 2014 | Record Label: Blue Note Records

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read with whom you can be who you are CD/LP/Track Review
with whom you can be who you are
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 21, 2018
Read Inner Core CD/LP/Track Review
Inner Core
by Troy Dostert
Published: September 21, 2018
Read Dirigo Rataplan II CD/LP/Track Review
Dirigo Rataplan II
by Jerome Wilson
Published: September 21, 2018
Read The Window CD/LP/Track Review
The Window
by Chris Mosey
Published: September 21, 2018
Read Mønk CD/LP/Track Review
Mønk
by Chris May
Published: September 20, 2018
Read The Music of Gary Lindsay / Are We Still Dreaming CD/LP/Track Review
The Music of Gary Lindsay / Are We Still Dreaming
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 20, 2018
Read "We Are All" CD/LP/Track Review We Are All
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 7, 2018
Read "Exotica" CD/LP/Track Review Exotica
by Chris May
Published: March 19, 2018
Read "Disappeared Behind the Sun" CD/LP/Track Review Disappeared Behind the Sun
by John Sharpe
Published: January 21, 2018
Read "At This Time: Duets" CD/LP/Track Review At This Time: Duets
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 6, 2017
Read "Memories of Maynard" CD/LP/Track Review Memories of Maynard
by Nicholas F. Mondello
Published: February 20, 2018
Read "At synge verden ind i en ny og mangefoldet tid" CD/LP/Track Review At synge verden ind i en ny og mangefoldet tid
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: May 13, 2018