The R&B elements get stronger, the sound and mix are more attuned to the dancefloor, yet this brings out the best in George Benson's funky side. Thanks in part to the more rigid beat, Benson pares down his style to its rhythmic essentials, refusing to spray notes all over the place at random, and as a result, the record cooks and dances. His treatment of Vince Guaraldi's "Cast Your Fate to the Wind," hugely complemented by Joe Farrell's wistfully prancing flute, is a mini-masterpiece in the use of space, of hitting exactly the right stabbing note right in the pocket.
Whether he gets (enough) credit or not from jazz heads, guitarist George Benson certainly created the template for smooth jazz , with 1975's Good King Bad a perfect example of the style in its infant stages. Benson combines his classy, Wes Montgomery-inspired guitar style with funky material ("Hold On I'm Coming"), yearning balladry ("Cast Your Fate To the Wind"), plush arrangements, and, on one song, buttery vocals for a classic slice of easygoing jazz.
Blues Alive is a live album by Irish guitarist Gary Moore, released in 1993. It is a collection of recordings taken from his 1992 tour and draws most of its material from Moore's then-recent Still Got The Blues and After Hours albums. The Japanese Limited Edition includes a bonus CD single.
Still Got the Blues is the eighth solo studio album by Northern Irish guitarist Gary Moore, released in 1990. It marked a substantial change in style for Moore, who, prior to this album, was predominantly known for rock and hard rock music with Skid Row, Thin Lizzy, G-Force, Greg Lake and during his own extensive solo career, as well as his jazz-fusion work with Colosseum II. As evidenced by its title, Still Got the Blues saw him delve into an electric blues style. The album features guest contributions from Albert King, Albert Collins and George Harrison. The title track was released as a single and reached No. 97 on the Billboard Hot 100. The album reached No. 83 on the Billboard 200 on 16 February 1991, then was certified gold on November 1995. This was the most successful album both in sales and chart positions from Gary Moore in the US.
The show captured on King Biscuit Flower Hour (In Concert) (1996) was recorded circa Greg Lake's 1981 self-titled debut, and features Lake (guitar/bass/vocals) leading an impressive backing combo with Gary Moore (guitar), Ted McKenna (drums), Tommy Eyre (keyboards), and Tristian Margetts (bass). The set originated as a King Biscuit Flower Hour broadcast from the Hammersmith Odeon in London on November 5, 1981. During this time, Lake was on an extended hiatus from Emerson, Lake and Palmer (ELP), and issued a pair of solo efforts…
Gary Lucas – charmingly oddball pop songwriter, musical world traveler, utterly hellacious guitarist – is perhaps at his most hellaciously, charmingly cosmopolitan on this frankly amazing album, which finds him adapting popular Chinese songs that were originally recorded in the 1960s and which he heard and fell in love with during a sojourn in Taiwan in the mid-'70s. His girlfriend at the time had a cassette tape of such local superstars as Chow Hsuan and Bai Kwong, and it was, he says in his liner notes, "like almost no other music I had ever heard before." Twenty-five years later he put together this quirkily gorgeous tribute, which includes jaw-droppingly virtuosic fingerstyle guitar arrangements ("Mad World," "Wall") and song settings using guest vocalists. Among the best of the latter are the limpidly beautiful "Night in Shanghai" (again, note the guitar playing) and the country-flavored "I Wait for Your Return," which is simply a hoot. He's not playing this stuff for laughs, though; his genuine affection for the music comes through loud and clear, and even when he has fun with it he is obviously trying to do so in a way that brings its haunting loveliness to the fore. Very highly recommended.
Gary Moore's tribute to Fleetwood Mac guitarist Peter Green, Blues for Greeny, is more of a showcase for Moore's skills than Green's songwriting. After all, Green was more famous for his technique than his writing. Consequently, Moore uses Green's songs as a starting point, taking them into new territory with his own style. And Moore positively burns throughout Blues for Greeny, tearing off licks with ferocious intensity. If anything, the album proves that Moore is at his best when interpreting other people's material – it easily ranks as one of his finest albums.