Saturday, January 8, 2011

Roger Smith: Just Enough (2004)

This pianist and organist has been releasing solid, funky smooth jazz discs for a decade, but has never quite been given his due or been an upper-echelon artist. On this likeable, easy grooving disc, he increases his chances for mainstream exposure by working with the infallible Dave Koz and the Temptations (on the dreamy, mid-tempo ballad "I'll Always Love You") and Peter White, who wrote and plays on the spirited "Workin' It." It's great hanging with high-profile cats, but Smith -- whose multifaceted approach is reminiscent of George Duke -- does just fine on his own, as well, working up the moody, old-school soul-jazz groove on "Rough Cut" (with brass enhancements courtesy of Norbert Statchel and Adolpho Acosta from Tower of Power) and the bluesy "Vega." Another type of vibe is created on the island-themed "Hali Imaile (The Maui Song)."
1. Rough Cut 4:31
2. Just Enough 4:06
3. Vega 4:01
4. I'll Always Love You 5:11
5. Workin' It 5:15
6. Sunset Dreams 4:17
7. Hali' Imaile 3:32
8. Friday 3:46
9. Tunisia 3:59
10. Perfect Circle 3:18
11. Just Another Day 5:51
12. Roger's Groove 4:22
13. Friday (Remix) 3:47
Personnel: Roger Smith (piano, electric piano, organ, programming); Phillip Ingram, Lynne Fiddmont, Rachael Santos, Carol Toca, The Temptations (vocals); Cornelious Daniels (various instruments, programming); Peter White, Derek Allen; Arthur Marbury (various instruments); Dino Soldo (soprano saxophone); Norbert Statchel (tenor saxophone); Dave Koz (saxophone); Adolpho Acosta (trumpet); Thom Rotella, Kevin Chokan, Ray Raymond (guitar); Mike Tores (percussion)
Just Enough
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