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Between2Worlds by Chuck Loeb

Between2Worlds Composer, arranger, producer and guitarist extraordinaire Chuck Loeb has entertained and enthralled audiences for four decades around the world and back again. Growing up in New York seemed the perfect beginning for a career in music as Loeb experienced many of the world’s greats and began studying with Richie Hart and Hy White, traveling to Philadelphia for studies with Dennis Sandole before finally hitting New York City, studying with the great Jim Hall.

During his New York years, Loeb worked as sideman for drummer Chico Hamilton, Latin percussionist & bandleader Ray Barreto and flutist Hubert Laws while studying music. Eventually, Loeb was asked to join the Stan Getz group, becoming musical director, using many of his own compositions each night. Loeb’s meeting with the sensual vocalist- songwriter Carmen Cuesta from Madrid, Spain proved to be a win-win situation, as they now often work together on compositions as husband-wife team.

Drawing on his skills from both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, Loeb brings new life, timbers and textures to this latest album Between 2 Worlds. Focusing on guitar, bass and drums, this CD lets go of some technology and picks up spontaneity, spunk and sensual expressions. "Normally my CDs are quite orchestrated, with plenty of keyboards and programming, but there’s virtually none of that on this record," says Loeb. Challenging himself, Loeb describes this album as more of an open sound with more room for him to be the driving force on the record, harmonically, texturally and melodically.

Opening with "Lets Go," Loeb fans will recognize his guitar backed by stealthy drum work of Dave Weckl and percussion of Bashiri Johnson. A special addition to this song is Brian Culbertson on trombone and Eric Marienthal on sax, with some sassy interplay. Gorgeous Carmen Cuesta, Mrs. Chuck Loeb, brings her smooth, dreamy vocals to layer the melody between Loeb’s sweltering guitar and Will Lee’s bass on the romantic "Hiram," just as she enhances the title track "Between2Worlds," creating a sizzling Latin flavored beat.

Upbeat, funky, "Mittens" sets the stage for a mood change, a bit playful, penetrating guitar work with a head bopping, toe tapping feel. Smoking horn interaction keeps the listener alert, engaged. Joining dad, Lizzy Loeb keeps the album fresh with her collaboration for "Oh No You Didn’t," a spicy, funky, R&B edged rhythm. This song clearly should hit the pop charts. Spirited hooks, spunky loops, sassy wording.... .a winner. She sings the words so many of us relate to.

"Let’s Play" takes the listener back to the jazz floor with Loeb’s guitar superbly fretting spiritedly, while backed by a strong bass rhythmically in sync. The drummer is fearless in his interaction. Dedicating "The Great Hall" to his teacher Jim Hall, who Loeb says "in his Zen-like humility and grace took me on as a guitar student when I was 17 and in no way worthy." Loeb says he is still working on Hall’s lessons. A somber closing with "Early Turns To Late," is for Loeb’s parents. Gently approaching the end with guitarist Pat Bergeson on harmonica, this track invites the listener to just relax and reflect.

Chuck Loeb has performed in many arenas of the music world. His new CD offers a taste of several areas which bring him to stardom on so many levels. Not least is his wonderfully gifted wife and daughter. Yet with their tremendous talents, they don’t overshadow Loeb as he continues writing, producing and performing for his boundless, faithful audience.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Chuck Loeb
  • CD Title: Between2Worlds
  • Genre: Smooth Jazz
  • Year Released: 2009
  • Record Label: Heads Up
  • Musicians: Brian Culbertson, Nathan Eklund (trombone), Gerald Veasley, Dieter IIG, Will Lee (bass), Carmen Cuesta, Lizzy Loeb (vocals), Eric Marienthal (saxophones/flute), Pat Bergeson (harmonica), Dave Weckl, Wolfgang Haffner (drums), Bashiri Johnson, David Charles (percussion)
  • Rating: Five Stars
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