Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Bob James - 1977 - BJ4

Bob James 

01. Pure Imagination 5:22
02. Where The Wind Blows Free 6:44
03. Tappan Zee 6:51
04. Nights Are Forever Without You 6:25
05. Treasure Island 6:41
06. El Verano 4:55

Bass – Gary King
Cello – Alan Shulman, Charles McCracken
Drums – Steve Gadd
Electric Piano [Fender Rhodes], Piano [Acoustic Grand], Clavinet, Synthesizer [Arp Odyssey, Oberheim Polyphonic] – Bob James
Guitar – Eric Gale
Oboe, English Horn – Sidney Weinberg
Percussion – Ralph MacDonald
Recorder [Alto] – George Marge
Soloist, Flute, Flute [Alto] – Hubert Laws
Soloist, Trumpet, Flugelhorn – Art Farmer
Tenor Saxophone, Bass Clarinet, Recorder [Tenor] – Romeo Penque
Tenor Saxophone, Flute, Clarinet – Eddie Daniels
Trumpet – John Frosk, John Gatchell
Viola – Emanuel Vardi, Lamar Alsop
Violin – Charles Libove, David Nadien, Emanuel Green, Harold Kohon, Harry Glickman, Matthew Raimondi, Max Ellen, Paul Gershman

Recorded at Van Gelder Studios, November/December 1976.

He may not have been inventive with his album titles, but jazz keyboardist Bob James has always had a way with stellar arrangements and great material. So it is with his 1977 album BJ4. Continuing the jazz-pop/rock fusion of its three immediate predecessors, BJ4 only has six tracks on it, but they are very good ones--originals like "Where The Wind Blows Free", "Tappan Zee", and "Treasure Island"; and adaptations of "Pure Imagination" (from the original 1971 film WILLY WONKA AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY), the England Dan and John Ford Coley hit "Nights Are Forever Without You", and "El Verano"--a lush Latin-influenced instrumental based on the Jefferson Starship's 1975 hit "Miracles."

James' arrangements and keyboard playing are aided by such fine musicians as percussionist Ralph MacDonald, drummer Steve Gadd, guitarist Eric Gale, and flautist Hubert Laws, along with the recording expertise of producer Creed Taylor. This is yet another jewel in James' ever-expanding crown of great albums, and well worth getting for jazz, pop, and rock fans alike.

1 comment: