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Randy Jackson's Music Club, Vol. 1

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Album Review

As he never tires of telling us during his day gig as a judge on American Idol, Randy Jackson has an extensive history in the music business, playing with everybody from Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey to Journey and Stacy Lattisaw, but the question remains: if left to his own devices, what kind of record would he make? Well, wonder no more, as Jackson finally has gotten around to capitalizing on his newfound stardom by releasing Randy Jackson's Music Club, Vol. 1, a star-studded project designed to show off Randy's range...not really as a musician per se, but more as a producer, or better yet, as an A&R guy. Crammed with singers — sometimes as many as three on one track — this album has the unshakable feel of a label showcase, as if Jackson were pushing each musician here with the intent of being responsible for his or her success. It's an odd vibe made odder still by Jackson's insistence on appealing to everybody, as if there were more than a handful of listeners who want to hear crunk, country, and gospel on the same record. This odd mix is made stranger by some truly bizarre pairings, chief among them pushing Van Hunt into a mushy collaboration with Jason Mraz and Jon McLaughlin. Blake isn't here, but that hardly means that Idol is ignored: Katharine McPhee and Elliott Yamin duet on "Real Love" and Paula Abdul comes out of retirement for a new tune, "Dance Like There's No Tomorrow."

Biography

Born: 23 June 1956 in Baton Rouge, LA

Genre: Pop

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

Although best known as a judge on the Fox television vocal competition American Idol, Randy Jackson is also a longtime bassist, producer, and music industry executive. Born Randall Darius Jackson in Baton Rouge, LA, in 1956, Jackson began playing bass around age 13. Early in his career Jackson nabbed work with a variety of jazz, R&B, and soul artists, including stints with fusion violinist Jean-Luc Ponty and drummer Billy Cobham; however, his most high-profile gig was with the rock band Journey,...
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