Opening the iTunes Store.If iTunes doesn’t open, click the iTunes icon in your Dock or on your Windows desktop.Progress Indicator
Opening the iBooks Store.If iBooks doesn't open, click the iBooks app in your Dock.Progress Indicator

iTunes is the world's easiest way to organize and add to your digital media collection.

We are unable to find iTunes on your computer. To preview and buy music from Moon Ride by Leon Ware, download iTunes now.

Do you already have iTunes? Click I Have iTunes to open it now.

I Have iTunes Free Download
iTunes for Mac + PC

Moon Ride

Open iTunes to preview, buy and download music.

Album Review

Leon Ware is hardly a household name but he was one of Motown's most successful songwriters. His list of accomplishments is too long to list in its entirety here (see the bio) but they include writing Michael Jackson's smash "I Wanna Be Where You Are," working on Quincy Jones' classic Body Heat and Mellow Madness albums, and writing and producing Marvin Gaye's monster I Want You LP. He's also cut brilliant albums for Gordy and Elektra in the 1970s and '80s, and influenced singers and songwriters from Rahsaan Patterson andLewis Taylor to D'Angelo, and Bilal.

Moon Ride is Ware's debut album for the revived Stax imprint. His late 20th and early 21st century self-released albums are a little thin in production — due to a lack of a proper budget — but they are musically astute and sophisticated. Ware's absolute lyrical and musical obsession with the topics of love, the sensual, and the divine are a constant on every record he's made, written or produced, and are on full display here.

Because of its lush, elegant textures, open drifting songs, and laid-back romantic vibe, Moon Ride can be a little difficult to get a handle on initially. This is because it was constructed as an album, not a series of singles. It's a deep journey into the sensual by a master storyteller. The graceful sexy soul in the title track opens the album; it floats, hovers, and winds its way deep into the senses like an opiate. The undercurrent of guitars and funky keyboard lines surround the listener as Ware's amazing voice just comes through the ether to lay out the sensual truth. Hold onto the synth and guitar vamps and you're there, in Ware's zone. The joyous riff that opens "Blue Dress," is a fingerpopper, it holds the attention while going deeper into Ware's husky raw sensual expression. The gorgeous ballad "Hold Tight" follows it as a blend of jazz, urban soul, and Ware's impressionistic poetry all set a scene. "Take Your Time," was written with and stars soul-jazz guitar great David T. Walker; its depth and dimension are enhanced by plush production touches making it dreamy, wispy, and warm. If there's a single on this set it's "Smoovin'," a jazzy tune with a throwaway title and a killer hook offered by a blend of guitars, a strong yet subtle bassline, and David Foreman's overdubbed guitars. Add to this the backing vocals of James Ingram and you have a stone killer. Other standouts include "I Never Loved So Much," and a killer recut of "To Serve You (All My Love") off 2004's Deeper album that blows away the original. One can hear Marvin Gaye's ghost emoting through Ware's delivery as drummer Teddy Campbell's subtle breaks highlight the groove. (Ingram appears here too.) Fellow Detroiter Amp Fiddler cameos on "From Inside," an erotic slow burn of a ballad he co-wrote with Ware. He also plays keyboards on it. As the extra rhythm tracks appear on the refrain (a Fiddler trademark), Ware just takes his vocal right toward them and opens it all up to the listener's senses.

The lasting impression from Moon Ride is that Ware remains an original; a pioneering artist who continues to evolve and who is perhaps more relevant today than in the '70s. He is a poet of the senses; for him music speaks a deeper more provocative truth: That the emotional and physical intimacy of lovers is where the Divine speaks directly. Moon Ride is a journey into the heart of that space, and the welcome, high profile return of a master.


Born: 16 February 1940 in Detroit, MI

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Songwriter, singer, and producer Leon Ware was one of the less-recognized products of the Motown Records music factory of the 1960s and '70s, primarily because he tended to work behind the scenes. His signature style was a highly romantic approach to soul music that resulted in many hit records, notably "I Wanna Be Where You Are," recorded by Michael Jackson, and "I Want You," recorded by Marvin Gaye, both of which he co-wrote. Over the course of 40 years, he also released 11 ballad-heavy albums...
Full bio

Top Albums and Songs by Leon Ware

Moon Ride, Leon Ware
View in iTunes

Customer Ratings

We have not received enough ratings to display an average for this album.

Influenced by this Artist