Friday, July 11, 2008

Quick Hitters:: Verve Remixed 4

Ok, it's a lovely July Friday (it is here, hopefully it's the same where you are), and you don't want to be bombarded with news of the latest folktronic masterpiece or details of the latest Americana artist that will blow your smartly-angled fedora off. You want something to help you relax and soak up some sunshine, and so for that I give you a quick shot of Verve Remixed 4.

I'm guessing you know the deal with the Verve remix series, basically they recruit some of today's more well known remixes and electronic artists to re-work songs by the elite of jazz vocalists past. With contributions from Dinah Washington, Nina Simone, Astrud Gilberto, Sarah Vaughn, and Ella Fitzgerald, this version leans heavily towards the ladies of jazz, and that is certainly an all-star lineup, but James Brown and Roy Ayers are included to represent for the fellas. This is certainly a remix album, but the crew they assembled has done a good job allowing the singers and the vocals to remain the focus of each song, nothing feels totally re-arranged. And when you've got a lineup like this, that seems like a solid plan.

Nina Simone's Gimme Some is given plenty of get up and go by Mike Mangini - it feels like a song that would accompany a movie, "falling-in-love" montage that featured lots of walks in parks and beside rivers. Kenny Dope does his name proud on The Was A Time, lacing King James (the original!) with wicked-fast drums and all kinds of horns. Is having two Nina Simone tracks within the first five songs overkill? The urgent drums of the Pilooski Edit of Take Care Of Business would argue that it is not. The guitar-led groove of the Mocky Remix for Anita O'Day's Tenderly is really quite enjoyable. The Karriem Riggins remix of Willie Bobo's Evil Ways is worth mentioning, mainly so I can type the name Willie Bobo. 9th Wonder hooks up Roy Ayers and his beloved Everybody Loves The Sunshine with some solid guitar licks and his patented, knocking drums.

So there you are a little jazz of the remix variety for your Friday. Can't go wrong with that.

Posted at 12:30 PM by naedoo :: 0 comments

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