The only vocalist in history to net Grammy Awards in three different categories (jazz, pop, and R&B, respectively). Collection includes: We Got By (1975); Glow (1976); All Fly Home (1978); This Time (1980); Breakin' Away (1981); Jarreau (1983); High Crime (1984); L Is For Lover (1986); Heart's Horizon (1988); Blue Angel (1992) Single; Heaven and Earth (1992); Tenderness (1994)
The only vocalist in history to net Grammy Awards in three different categories (jazz, pop, and R&B, respectively), Al Jarreau was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on March 12, 1940. The son of a vicar, he earned his first performing experience singing in the church choir. After receiving his master's degree in psychology, Jarreau pursued a career as a social worker, but eventually he decided to relocate to Los Angeles and try his hand in show business, playing small clubs throughout the West Coast…
The Ultimate Collection is quite different from the two-disc George Benson overviews that preceded it, including The George Benson Anthology. Like that 2000-released set, this one was also issued through Rhino, though there are only 17 tracks of overlap. The Ultimate Collection has even less in common with Legacy's The Essential George Benson (2006), which naturally favors Benson's Columbia and CTI output. The heart here is 1976-1983, an era during which Benson recorded for Warner and was regularly listed in the Top Ten of the Billboard R&B singles chart.
George Benson is simply one of the greatest guitarists in jazz history, but he is also an amazingly versatile musician, and that frustrates to no end critics who would paint him into a narrow bop box. He can play in just about any style from swing to bop to R&B to pop with supreme taste, a beautiful rounded tone, terrific speed, a marvelous sense of logic in building solos, and, always, an unquenchable urge to swing. His inspirations may have been Charlie Christian and Wes Montgomery and he can do dead-on impressions of both but his style is completely his own. Not only can he play lead brilliantly, he is also one of the best rhythm guitarists around, supportive to soloists and a dangerous swinger, particularly in a soul-jazz format.
Monster Music presents to you the amazingly crisps and dynamic HDS High Definition Surround Sound SuperDisc Songs and Stories, George’s second SuperDisc, following up the multi-GRAMMY® winning Givin’ It Up, with Al Jarreau.
Recorded live at Waterfront Hall, Belfast, Ireland, in 2000, these ten tracks are pleasant re-workings of guitarist and vocalist George Benson's jazz-pop hits of the '70s. To his credit, Benson isn't just a human jukebox re-creating well-known songs and sidestepping any spontaneity that derives from a live performance. For instance, his band, which includes keyboardist Joe Sample, gets to stretch out a bit, showing off their improvisational skills on "This Masquerade," "On Broadway," and particularly on Sample's "Deeper Than You Think." Alongside his seven-member group, Benson employs the BBC Big Band and musicians from the Ulster Orchestra who provide a real lushness that enhances the music instead of utilizing the cheesy synthesizer strings that often marred some of his work in the '80s and '90s. Fans of Benson's early sessions for Columbia or A&M may not rush out to purchase this, but those who favor Breezin' will find some pleasant moments here.