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Bob James — Two (May 29, 1975) Japanese Remastered Reissue 2015

Bob James — Two (May 29, 1975) Japanese Remastered Reissue 2015

  Bob James — Two (May 29, 1975) Japanese Remastered Re. 2015
•   Keyboard player whose light, hook–laden pop instrumental sessions were often on the charts during the 1970s.
•   Robert McElhiney “Bob” James
Born: December 25, 1939
Location: Marshall, Missouri, United States
Genre: Fusion, Jazz–Funk, Smooth Jazz
Album release: May 29, 1975
Recorded: December 1974 & January 1975, Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey
Record Label: Tappan Zee
Duration:     41:53
Tracks:
01. Take Me to the Mardi Gras      5:49
02. I Feel a Song (In My Heart)      5:28
03. The Golden Apple      7:19
04. Farandole (L’Arlesienne Suite No. 2)      8:25
05. You’re as Right as Rain      5:29
06. Dream Journey      5:54
07. Here Let My Life      3:25
Written by:
•   Paul Simon     1
•   Tony Camillo, Mary Sawyer     2
•   Bob James     3, 6
•   Georges Bizet     4
•   Thom Bell, Linda Creed     5
Awards:
•   Billboard Pop Albums     #75
•   Billboard Top Soul Albums     #28
•   Billboard Top Jazz Albums     #2
Personnel:
•   Bob James — Electric Piano, Clavinet, Synthesizer (Arp Odyssey), Organ (Yamaha Yc30), Conductor, Arranger
•   Eric Gale — Guitar, Bass
•   Hubert Laws — Flute, Electric Flute
•   Rickie Resnicoff — Guitar
•   Gary King — Bass
•   Steve Gadd, Andrew Smith — Drums
•   Arthur Jenkins, Ralph MacDonald — Percussion
•   Eddie Daniels — Clarinet
•   Al Richmond, Jimmy Buffington, Peter Gordon — French Horn
•   Eddie Bert, Tom Mitchell, Wayne Andre, Tony Studd — Trombone
•   Alan Shulman, Alla Goldberg, Tony Sophos, George Ricci, Jesse Levy, Seymour Barab, Warren Lash — Cello
•   John Frosk, Lew Soloff, Marvin Stamm, Randy Brecker, Victor Paz — Trumpet, Flugelhorn
•   Charles Libove, David Nadien, Emanuel Green, Gene Orloff, Harold Kohon, Harry Cykman, Harry Glickman, Harry Lookofsky, Joe Malin, Matthew Raimondi, Max Ellen, Paul Gershman — Violin
•   Patti Austin — Lead Vocals
•   Frank Floyd, Lani Groves, Zachary Sanders — Vocals
REVIEWS:
Review by Rebecca *rhapsodyinblue*, Amazon.com
♠   This album is the second of a series of jazz–funk classics (along with One, Three and BJ4). Released in 1975, this album charted at number two on the Jazz Album Charts. The track “Take Me to the Mardi Gras” is one of the most widely used tracks in hip–hop breakbeat samples.
♠   I was just talking on the phone to a very good friend of mine as we recall the music that we both loved in the ‘70s and ‘80s and still enjoy listening to this day. Bob James, whom we both watched at a live concert years ago, was one of the subjects of our conversation, and we both agreed that of all Bob James’ recordings, “Bob James Two” is our top favorite. Likewise, we both agreed to JAZZIZ Magazine’s 1997 Readers’ Poll which voted Mr. James as the #1 Best Acoustic Pianist and #1 Best Jazz Composer. Our phone conversation prompted me to write this review.
♠   I have loved the music of Mr. James ever since I heard the albums he collaborated with a gifted guitarist, Earl Klugh, on “One On One” and a follow–up “Two Of A Kind,” which my friend and I both own in LP formats. This wonderful CD consists of six tracks (I wish there were more) superbly arranged and conducted by the very talented Mr. James himself, who also plays electric piano and organ magnificently.
♠   The opening and one of the best tracks, “TAKE ME TO THE MARDI GRAS” was composed by another famous artist, Paul Simon, and it was a jazz staple in the ‘70s/‘80s and everyone I know loves this dynamic tune. The mixed ensemble of various instruments blended perfectly in harmony to produce this awesome recording. I especially like the solo clarinet by Eddie Daniels as well as Eric Gale on guitar.
♠   “I FEEL A SONG IN MY HEART" is a standout! This song has straight–to–the–point lyrics and sung by one of the finest divas in the jazz scene and my favorite jazz vocalist, Patti Austin. Hers is a kind of voice that is really meant to sing jazz/blues songs. Her interpretation is heartfelt and moving, not to mention the flawless arrangement. Some of my favorite songs that she recorded are “How Do You Keep The Music Playing,” “Say You Love Me” and “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes.”
♠   Another highlight to me is the track that I never get tired listening to all these years…. “YOU’RE AS RIGHT AS RAIN,” which was originally recorded by the Stylistics in the ‘70s. Remember the famous and best–loved Rhythm & Blues group back then? Their most notable songs are “You’ll Never Get To Heaven If You Break My Heart,” “I’m Stone In Love With You,” “Stop Look And Listen To Your Heart” and “You Are Everything.”
♠   The track that has a classical touch is “Farandole: “L’ Arlesienne Suite No. 2.” It was arranged and adapted from the great master Georges Bizet’s composition. It features a fine jazz musician, Hubert Laws, on flute. The rest of the tracks are Bob James’ original compositions “The Golden Apple” and a very remarkable tune, “Dream Journey.”
♠   Superb recording! Will never get tired listening to it especially “I Feel A Song In My Heart.”
Review by Scott Yanow, Allmusic.com / Score: ***
♠   Bob James largely defined pop/jazz crossover in the ‘70s. Two, reissued by Koch, is typical of his output. Mixing together aspects of pop, R&B and classical with just a touch of jazz, James (heard throughout on electric keyboards) put the emphasis on catchy melodies and lightly funky rhythms. The results range from insipid to pleasant, with a brass section, a string section, and vocalists (including Patti Austin) utilized to create what is essentially background music.
Solo:
•   1974 One
•   1975 Two
•   1976 Three
•   1977 BJ4
•   1977 Heads
•   1978 Touchdown
•   1979 Lucky Seven
•   1980 H
•   1981 All Around the Town
•   1981 Sign of the Times
•   1982 Hands Down
•   1983 Foxie
•   1983 Taxi — The Genie
•   1984 12
•   1984 The Swan
•   1986 Obsession
•   1988 Ivory Coast
•   1990 Grand Piano Canyon
•   1994 Restless
•   1997 Playin’ Hooky
•   1999 Joy Ride
•   2001 Anthology
•   2001 Dancing on the Water
•   2001 Restoration
•   2002 Morning, Noon & Night
•   2002 The Essential Collection 24 Smooth Jazz Classics
•   2003 Bob James in Hi Fi
•   2004 Take It From The Top
•   2005 Urban Flamingo
•   2009 The Very Best of Bob James
•   2013 Rhodes Scholar: Jazz–Funk Classics 1974–1982
Website: http://bobjames.com/
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Bob James — Two (May 29, 1975) Japanese Remastered Reissue 2015

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