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Mint Jam

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Album Review

This set differs from most of the Yellowjackets' previous recordings in several ways: It is a two-CD set, it has not been released by a major record company but instead has been put out by the group's own private label, and the music overall emphasizes straight-ahead jazz and dynamic solos. In fact, it contains some of the best solos on record by tenor saxophonist Bob Mintzer and keyboardist Russell Ferrante. With electric bassist Jimmy Haslip inspiring the lead voices and taking occasional solos, while the band's newest member, drummer Marcus Baylor, keeps the ensembles stimulating, the group performs a dozen songs, all of which are originals by Ferrante (who emphasizes his own acoustic piano playing), Haslip, and/or Mintzer. Whether it be the catchy "Boomtown," "Blues for KJ," "Song for Carla," or "Statue of Liberty," the Yellowjackets show that they are one of the most vital groups in contemporary jazz, even after 20 years. The high-quality improvisations, the appealing group sound, and the diverse but consistently satisfying originals make this one of the Yellowjackets' strongest releases.

Customer Reviews

Two Smokin Sets

Only a band that has been together for as long as these guys have could sound this good

Dis don't need no peanut butter, man!

My STRONGEST recommendation could not match the beauty that is The Yellowjackets! Bravo boys.

One Heck of an Album

Absolutely amazing solo work all around on this album! This album will make you want to stop everything and simply sit and listen as the Yellow Jackets make the whole house swing! Although the Yellow Jackets stay very much in Fusion, the incorporation of a more “Straight-Ahead” feeling on some tunes gives adds a great compliment to the mood and even more to the excellence of the solo work and over all feel of the tunes. The album focuses on each member’s own abilities with a whole slew of great solos. Also the composition and arrangement on this album compliment the extensive solo and backing work to the fullest. Great for anyone who is studying, (Jazz) or anyone who simply loves music. This is certainly the best pick if you are looking for an all encompassing, great Yellow Jackets’ album. Overall very fun, almost jolly manner, really swingin’ and groovin’. Go ahead and snatch this album, Two Thumbs UP!


Formed: 1981

Genre: Jazz

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

Although sometimes grouped with Spyro Gyra, Yellowjackets are actually one of the most creative regular groups in the "rhythm & jazz" genre. Founded in 1981 as an R&B-oriented band that starred guitarist Robben Ford, the group took a giant step forward when, after Ford's departure, altoist Marc Russo took his place. With original members Russell Ferrante on keyboards and electric bassist Jimmy Haslip, in addition to drummer William Kennedy, the band found its own R&B-ish sound, sometimes playing...
Full Bio
Mint Jam, Yellowjackets
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Customer Ratings

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