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Accentuate The Positive by Al Jarreau

Revisiting the things that often define an artist' talent is a good thing! For someone like Al Jarreau, coming back to straight ahead jazz has been an exploratory journey waiting to happen. Since the mid-'70s, Al has been practicing the art of vocalese by crisscrossing the paths of R&B and pop, while making various turns along the lines of contemporary jazz. Every now and again, he would tease his fans with semblances of scat intertwined with other musical styles, without treating jazz connoisseurs to what he is best known for. To correct that missing link, Al Jarreau has now come full-circle with a highly anticipated straight ahead jazz offering entitled 'Accentuate The Positive.'

This latest effort has been a long time coming since his precedent setting album entitled 'Look to the Rainbow' was recorded in 1977. But over the years, Al has managed to win Grammy awards in the Pop, R&B and jazz arena any number of times without ever missing a beat. Although he has continued to wow his many fans as the best and brightest vocal talent around today, some have wondered when he would revisit his first calling. 'Accentuate the Positive' does exactly that with a series of hip soul stirring mixes that are filled with vintage Al Jarreau. For effect, he adds the creative stylized writing skills of Russell Ferrante to this second coming, which also helps to drive a stellar cast of awesome musicians.

Al Jarreau shines on this new release with classic renditions of prominent standards and impeccable originals, all laced with his dynamic tenor-based vocal influences. In retracing his jazz steps with tunes such as "Cold Duck", "I'm Beginning to See the Light" and a host of other by-gone tracks, Al does a fantastic job of moving back into the mainstream. He does so with the ease of a seasoned veteran. Without a doubt, it can be said that Al Jarreau's four decade career is a triology of musical styles, each of which has allowed him to be successful across a number of genres. But straight ahead jazz is what his legions of fans have always looked for. 'Accentuate the Positive' fits the bill to a "T", everything else is just Al Jarreau and his band of merry men setting their sights on the next wave of influences.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Al Jarreau
  • CD Title: Accentuate The Positive
  • Genre: Jazz Vocals
  • Year Released: 2004
  • Record Label: Verve
  • Rating: Five Stars
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