Grover Washington, Jr. – Prime Cuts: The Columbia Years 1987-1999

Artist: Grover Washington, Jr.
Title: Prime Cuts: The Columbia Years 1987-1999
Year Of Release: 1999
Label: Columbia
Genre: Smooth Jazz
Quality: FLAC (tracks) / MP3
Total Time: 58:46 min
Total Size: 355 MB / 134 MB
WebSite: Album Preview

01. Take Five (Take Another Five)
02. Sacred Kind Of Love
03. Only For You (Siempre Para Ti Sere)
04. Please Send Me Someone To Love
05. Strawberry Moon
06. Summer Nights
07. Heat Index
08. Next Exit
09. Blues For Dp
10. Soulful Strut (The Top Down Version)
11. The Love In His Infant Eyes
12. The Night Fantastic
13. Protect The Dream
14. My foolish heart
Washington’s Columbia material wasn’t quite as rapturous as his landmark records from the ’70s (most notably Inner City Blues and Mister Magic), which minted the template for the smooth jazz. But Prime Cuts offers a concise yet comprehensive overview of a surprisingly adventurous period in the soulful saxophonist’s career, which was tragically cut short by his death at age 56 in late 1999. There are classic Washington grooves like “Strawberry Moon” and his version of Brubeck’s “Take Five,” both songs showcasing his luminescent tone and sinuous inflections. “Only for You” and “Summer Nights” pour soothing horn phrases over lively percussion, while “Blues for D.P.” puts Washington in a more straightforward, postbop setting with Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, and Grady Tate. Of the three previously unissued tracks, “Heat Index,” suffers from a stilted arrangement and not enough bottom-tone organ; a new rendition of “Soulful Strut” is marvelous but only marginally different than the original; and “The Night Fantastic” is a relatively standard workout enhanced by Washington’s dulcet modulations and quickly punctuated crescendoes. The closer, “Protect the Dream,” delivers the giddy eddies and melodic swoons most listeners now associate with Kenny G–except that Grover’s are invested with twice as much soul. — Britt Robson

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