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Soul On Jazz

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Album Review

There was a strong jazz vibe running through some of Philip Bailey's sides with Earth, Wind & Fire. On Soul on Jazz, his second release for Heads Up International, co-producer Bailey remakes several jazz standards, some with new lyrics by his son, Sir Bailey. The foray is most successful on Thelonious Monk's "Ruby My Dear," a percussive take on Gene McDaniels' "Compared to What," and Joe Zawinul's "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy." R&B and jazz stylishly intersect on the smooth airy ballad "Unrestrained." Bailey redoes the EWF classic "Keep Your Head to the Sky," giving it a mellow sheen that's close to one of his past cuts, "Children of the Ghetto." On that and his dusky cover of Herbie Hancock's "Tell Me a Bedtime Story" and the loopy "Bop-Skip-Doodle," Bailey flexes his legendary falsetto. More jazz-oriented than Dreams, Soul on Jazz benefits from the sharing of production chores with Myron McKinley, Bob Belden, and Scott Kinsey. The album is definitely on track.


Born: 08 May 1951 in Denver, CO

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Philip Bailey first gained fame as the mesmerizing lead falsetto of '70s supergroup Earth, Wind & Fire . The singer/percussionist's four-octave range set a high standard for upper-range pop vocalists. Bailey's shimmering falsetto blended perfectly with Maurice White's charismatic tenor to help the group build a reputation for exciting, live shows (complete with feats of magic) and innovative recordings. Six-time Grammy winners Earth, Wind & Fire had 46 charting R&B singles, 33 charting pop singles...
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Soul On Jazz, Philip Bailey
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