Jason Miles - 2 Grover With Love


Artist: Jason Miles
Title Of Album: 2 Grover With Love
Year Of Release: September 30, 2008
Label: Koch Records
Genre: Smooth Jazz
Bitrate: 192Kbps
Total Time: 56.39 min
Total Size: 76.6 MB

01. Summer Nights
02. Bright Moments
03. Making Love To You
04. Mr. Magic
05. Strawberry Moon
06. Moonstreams
07. Reaching Out
08. Reed Seed
09. Saddest Things, The
10. Stolen Moments
11. To Grover With Love

Jason Miles is one of these musicians who wrote music history. He was part of many famous productions like Luther Vandross' Power of Love, Michael Jackson’s HIStory and the classic Miles Davis album Tutu. Jason comments bass player Lee: "He is a superior musician who constantly makes everyone around him sound better." The same is to say about Jason Miles.

Beside further projects like Coast to Coast - Maximum Grooves (2004), Soul Summit (2008), and recently Global Noize (with DJ Logic) he is best known for his tribute albums: Celebrating the Music of Weather Report (2000), A Love Affair: The Music of Ivan Lins (2000), To Grover with Love (2001), Miles to Miles in The Spirit of Miles Davis (2005), What's Going On? (2006), his tribute to Marvin Gaye and this year 2 Grover With Love, his second homage to the late Grover Washington.

Jason explains the reason for his sophomore approach: “I started listening to Come Morning, the follow up to Winelight, and started to love those songs. I then listened to Strawberry Moon, and realized that I was on one of the songs on the CD, ‘Summer Nights,’ written by Marcus Miller. I knew at that point that there was definitely another Grover project to do, but it had to be done a certain way.”

Jason graces his new album with top notch musicians of the smooth jazz scene, among others Andy Snitzer, Najee, Kim Waters, Jay Beckenstein (sax), Dean Brown, Chuck Loeb (guitars), Brian Dunn (drums), Maysa (vocals), Ralph MacDonald (percussion) and Dominick Farinacci (trumpet).

Summer Nights is taken from Grover Washington's album Strawberry Moon (1987), composed, arranged and performed by Marcus Miller. Jason's cover features Andy Snitzer on sax. While Jason still plays the synth bass like the original, he fortunately replaced the programmed drums with Brian Dunne on drums, what really excels his rendition.

Bright Moments originally appeared on Grover's Skylarkin' (1979) during his Motown period. Eric Gale played the guitar on the original. This part is taken over by Chuck Loeb who brilliantly surpasses the original.

The romantic Making Love To You from Grover's album Come Morning (1980) is best performed by the irresistible Najee on alto sax. A little more moody then Grover's mellow soprano sax.

Mr. Magic (1974) was certainly one of Grover's biggest hits. Ralph MacDonald's arrangement and Grover's signature sound was an unbeatable combination. Maysa adds a special flavor to this sound.

Jason creates his own Strawberry Moon. His synth inspired version reminds me of the music of Art of Noise (Mr. Robinson). Popular and contemporary.

The esoteric Moonstreams was originally released on Grover's album Feels So Good (1975). The rendition features newcomer Dominick Farinacci on trumpet replacing Grover's sax in an elegant way. Also impressing Jason's synth transforming of the song. The sublime pastel color character of the original was exchanged with stronger colors.

Andy Snitzer defines Reaching Out anew with a great attitude of sensibility. Delicious! Grover's album Reed Seed (1974) is an underappreciated rare gem, which many critics consider as his best one. With a sure instinct Jason has chosen the title song and presents the formidable Jay Beckenstein on sax.

Kim Waters (sax) and Dominick Farinacci (trumpet) shares the melody on The Saddest Thing. A brilliant interference between song and improvisation.

Stolen Moments taken from the album Then And Now (1988) is more on the straight ahead side of jazz. A great session between Andy, Chuckl, Jason and Dominick. Grover doesn’t like to be categorized, and quotes the great Duke Ellington in saying there are only two types of music, "good and bad."

Jason comments his finest session: "I have to thank Chuck Loeb, Buddy Williams, and Gerald Veasley for getting behind this vision and understanding the concept. They helped me bring this music to life in a big way. Playing this music live in the studio with them was a beautiful experience. We created it from scratch and there are dynamics happening!"

Final cut is Jason's own composition To Grover With Love featuring Dean Brown on guitar. Jason performs the Hammond B3 in Booker T.'s style. Excellent!

I have to thank Jason for his new album 2 Grover With Love. We shouldn't forget the roots of Smooth Jazz. Without any doubt is Grover Washington the godfather of R&B influenced jazz and pioneered this music style. Jason refurbishes beautiful gems of the past.