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Maiden Voyage (And More)

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Album Review

This pop-oriented CD reissue brings back the highlights from pianist Ramsey Lewis' two Argo records Maiden Voyage and Mother Nature's Son. Although Lewis' trio of the time (with bassist Cleveland Eaton and drummer Maurice White) is heard prominently, they are accompanied by strings, voices (including Minnie Riperton) and (on the last four numbers) a large orchestra. There are some good piano solos but the Charles Stepney arrangements (which are lavishly praised in the liner notes) are period pieces as is much of the material which includes selections from Lennon & McCartney, Bob Dylan, Burt Bacharach ("Do You Know The Way To San Jose") and Aretha Franklin. Even Herbie Hancock's "Maiden Voyage" and Mike Gibbs' "Sweet Rain" sound like pop tunes. One can hear the beginnings of the crossover music of the 1980's and 90's in recordings such as this one but the performances have not dated all that well.

Customer Reviews

The Chess Brothers Make History

This record features tunes that shape the sound of the future of 'Pop' music: Minnie Riperton, Mother of actress Maya Rudolph (if ya don't know, Now you know) soaring to heights found on her Perfect Angel Album; Maurice White on percussion, crafting the string and horn sounds soon to be found in Rotary Connection and transferred by him to the West Coast through Earth Wind and Fire. Okay some of the arrangements won't fit our modern stylings but overall a compilation of things to come. Mix some of the tunes into a playlist for friends and see if they know who is the artist......

Mighty Quinn

Although I also really dig "Eternal Journey" the real reason to stop here is "The Mighty Quinn" - totally tight piano madness version of original Bob Dylan song.

Biography

Born: May 27, 1935 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Pianist and composer Ramsey Lewis has been a major figure in contemporary jazz since the late 1950s, playing music with a warm, open personality that's allowed him to cross over to the pop and R&B charts. Lewis was born in Chicago, Illinois on May 27, 1935, and was introduced to music by his father, who directed the choir at a local church and enjoyed the music of Duke Ellington and Art Tatum. Lewis began studying the piano when he was four years old, and was soon accompanying the choir at Sunday...
Full Bio
Maiden Voyage (And More), Ramsey Lewis
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