CD Morning Star [Digipak] [Earth Jazz/Vincent Herring] (CD 6309124),
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Morning Star [Digipak] [Earth Jazz/Vincent Herring]

  • 1. Do You Remember Me?
    2. Naima
    3. Black Fairytales
    4. Tom Tom
    5. Soul Leo
    6. Thang, The
    7. Never Forget
    8. Citizens of Zamunda
    9. Morning Star
    10. You Got Soul
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): CR73297

  • Credits
    ProducerRichie Goods
    EngineerManfred Knoop

    Personnel: Vincent Herring (saxophone); Anthony Wonsey (piano); Joris Dudli (drums).
    Audio Mixers: Dave Darlington; Kazuhiko Gomi.
    Liner Note Author: Bill Milkowski.
    Recording information: Twinz Studios, NJ.
    Editor: Kazuhiko Gomi.
    Photographers: John Abbott ; Roberto Cifarelli.
    Vincent Herring's third edition of his funk project the Earth Jazz ensemble has him and his cohorts jamming along quite nicely, extending the road song tradition without veering into so-called smooth jazz territory. This is nothing new for Herring, so fans who have been with him since his days with Nat Adderley should not be surprised. What is startling is the facility of his band to play a more R&B-derived music, as bassist Richie Goods, drummer Joris Dudli (ex-Art Farmer), and the growing keyboardist Anthony Wonsey expand the strict parameters of dance rhythms into a quite listenable experience. You hear the distinct crossover trappings of the electrified Herbie Hancock, Weather Report, and even early period David Sanborn in Herring's music on this date. The group turns the John Coltrane's usually pensive "Naima" into a funk tune with staggered accents, slows Mulgrew Miller's "Soul Leo" into a nicely turned-down fusion piece replete with Wonsey's electric piano, and romp through originals by the keyboardist, most notably the hip-shakin' funk of "The Thang." There are only traces of overt commercialism as Herring picks up a soprano sax, some gospel-derived soul, and even one jazz swing that reminds you of Herring's status as a top-drawer post-bopper. On occasion, musicians must make a better living and play to a larger urban audience, but in this case, the combo succeeds while avoiding a sell-out or watering down their music. ~ Michael G. Nastos

  • Critic Reviews
    JazzTimes (p.62) - "Herring's sole contribution, 'Never Forget,' is relaxation in action, something that might be said about much of the album."
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