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Night Fever (The Versatile Sessions) by Cornell Dupree

On Night Fever, Cornell Dupree demonstrates a great feel for recapturing the feel and aura of many of the tunes of yesterday. His skillful guitar work shines throughout this collection of covers.

He handles the opening track, Andy Gibb’s "Shadow Dancing," very competently, taking us back to when Gibb was proving its worthiness to competitively be on the pop scene. He treats track 2, "The Closer I Get to You," gently and with "TLC," the strings adding a telling touch to his pronounced guitar. A great rendition to which to engage in that cushy late-night soft talk with one’s significant other.... without question. His use of a well-recognized "fade" sound effect of the 80s (at least, among guitarists), fits nicely on this piece. He continues on with Stephen Bishop’s "On and On," offering a catchier disco dance flavor than I remember on the original. Other notables include his own bluesy "The Creeper" (track 7). Having personally dabbled in blues guitar, I find this up-tempo, rather rocking piece to be a very cool and well-conceived composition. There’s more: Steely Dan’s "Peg" (not quite "The Dan" quality, but good), an abundance of Bee Gees hits and a bluesy rendition of Paul Simon’s "Slip Slidin’ Away" (good stuff, with some competent keys work accompanying him), all contribute to this handsome collection.

Dupree’s decision to mix lilting, caressing strings and punctuating horns to complement his often bluesy guitar riffs throughout this collection was a wise one. He gets help from a lot of very skilled musicians, too many to list here, and it does add to the appeal of this rather well-done album. A comfy ride, indeed.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Cornell Dupree
  • CD Title: Night Fever (The Versatile Sessions)
  • Genre: Smooth Jazz
  • Year Released: 2006
  • Record Label: Empire Musicworks
  • Rating: Three Stars
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