Daily News from New York, New York on February 25, 1983 · 151
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Daily News from New York, New York · 151

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Location:
New York, New York
Issue Date:
Friday, February 25, 1983
Page:
151
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i 11 ftp - - few;, SAT 10 A.M. Hot mr MrJv Pmr Kir Pfaiot PkmkUL Yonkm. FfcMiiw or W oHd Tmd. C-tur. super hits from C.B.S. r TOUR r.lusie in a elass all ita ovn TOUCH OF CLASS, which is not to be confused with that mlnlscule pat m that often quixotically determines social acceptance, has been a key aLfLV. factor In the success of contemporary pop music. The "glamor" of raw musical styles that used to emanate from poverty pockets like traditional black blues and early white country n Western seems to have taken a back seat to ' more regal idioms today. Duke Ellington, for instance, was virtu ally anno In ted (and rightly so) starting in the late "20s not Just because of his genius in fashioning advanced compositions and orchestral modes, but also for the manner in which he presented them. Whether through Intricate harmonic progressions or through the subtlety of his personal planistie technique, his music reeked of sophistication and glamor. On the flip side was the earthy Louis Jordan, who could never be mistaken as a product of New England's Groton Academy. He was perhaps the founder of the instrumental aspect of rhythm "n blues. His outlet was the cocktail lounge, whereas Ellington's was the concert halL Jordan, the singer and alto saxophonist whose "Choo Choo Ch'Boogie" sold more than a million copies in the '40s, employed the kind of slick, urban, fast-moving melodic and rhythmic sounds that Chuck Berry, Elvis Presley and others utilized in generating rock 'n' roll the most popular style of music of our time as we know it today. Like Jordan, who played with the great Jazz band leader Chick Webb, most of the other talented musicians of the day ended up playing Jazz; suggesting, of course, that they had arrived. However, many of those who continued to play rhythm n blues, particularly those in singer James Brown's band, went on to create the kinds of earthy urban sounds which are at the heart of contemporary r 'n' b and r n r. The big difference now is the classy format in which these styles are presented. . "1 1 a. i. r -' t ' Maurice White EARTH WIND & FIRE Powerlight (Columbia) This new vesture by Earth Wind & Fire exudes all the classiness and energy that helped this crossover outfit catapult to stardom several years ago. It comes off sounding like a merger of an. enormous Baptist Church choir and a hip jazz band; the orchestral arrangement is awesome. As a whole, the instrumental music serves to "lift," for want of a better word, the basic "street sound" of the singers, giving them an elegant air that is distinctive from other popular groups steeped in the rhythm "n' blues tradition. It Is all busier than a Parisian thoroughfare. The guiding force behind the group is Maurice White, the drummer, lead singer and producer whose gospel and formal Jazz (out of Sonny Stitt) roots gave him the background to pull it all together. It should be pointed out that although the music here is gloriously original, it has strong ties to Kool and the Gang, whose raw ethnicity has unfortunately prevented them from proper recognition. However, the Interplay between instrumental horn sections and the vocals that distinguishes both groups explodes with fire, provoking the kind of swing and sway that is symbolic of African high-life dancing add. of course, Louis Jordan get-down sounds. The pace ( bene Is mostly upbeat,, which will appeal 1o dancers. The cut v "Freedom vt Cho.ica. makiM sxjlgaiikl cant social statement, but my favorite is the enchanting ballad, "Miracles," written by White, Jon Lind, Eddie Del Barrio and Mary D'Astugues. Haunting and tender, that song is one of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard. It actually cries. Earth Wind & Fire gives new meaning to the word "classy," and I like it MARIAN McPARTLAND Personal Choice (Concord) Pianist Marian McPartland, whose style in the past has been too subdued for my taste, appears to be loosening up. at least on this new recording. Although she admittedly omitted the flatted-fifth chord on Dave Brubeck's tune, "In Your Own Sweet Way," the song nonetheless turned out to be quite earthy and spirited. My favorite is the standard "I Hear a Rhapsody." which features a terrifically melodic bass solo by Steve La Spina. Those with a penchant for classy Jazz piano may want to consider this one. NEW ALBUM RELEASES Bryan Adams, Cuts Like a Knife (A&M) Louise Mandrell, Close Up (RCA) Randy Newman, Trouble in Paradise (Warner Bros.) The System, Sweat (Mirage) THAD JON ES "MEL LEWIS Thad Jones. Mel Lewis Orchestra (Blue Note) Trumpeter Thad Jones and drummer Mel Lewis created a big-band sound back in the 60s that surprised most Jazz aficionados; the prevailing notion was that an original, vibrant big band of any note was almost impossible to create. Not so, as this recording shows. This double album contains some of the classiest arrangements and ensemble playing since Ellington, Basie and Herman. I like such originals as "Big Dipper." "Groove Merchant" and Ellington's "Come Sunday." Unfortunately, the orchestra is disbanded. Jones now living in Denmark. But Lewis, who lives here, has assembled a superb quintet that Is now playing at Fat Tuesdays It : may Syrpre similarly rewarding, i V i nvu" - i . zTn FIRE I POWERLIGHT 1 OJjMheJ K29 . ea. Lp. ust 898 Journey "Frontiers". Has the big hit "Separate Ways". Earth. Wind & Fire "Powerlight". Includes the hot single "Fall in Love with Me". J hot new releases Z69 1Jrea. Lp. ust 898 Dexy's Midnight Runners "Too-Kye-Av-. Includes "Come on Eileen". Christopher Cross "Another Page". Features the single "All Right". j 4 I - v I. L i ill Rags & Riches "Land of 1,000 dances" Q99 A medley of super dance hits t including "El WatusiLa Bamba". P- Ust 598 BASF 90-minute blank cassette "Stackette" 3-pack S9 utw 5.99 Super special! Get 3 90-minute "Performance Series" blank cassettes complete with stackable plastic holder. I- HA tUXmf3rv-i - 1 1 i - lsavej excel with Maxell blank cassette twin-packs . LS-GOm'mute LN-90-minutt VD-Ominut UD-90-minutt low noist hui noist ultra dynamic ultra dynamic Q49 sf49 sf69 t?69 tj rig. 4.99 rjt rrg. S.99 tt ng. S.99 tjr.g.6.99 Also: Maxell Tape Recorder Can Kit. mfr's suggested retail 7.99...NOW 1.99 ti I i'im m p J take the chrome challenge"! BASF blank video cassettes Q99 sold in stock 12.99 Model T-1 20 V.H.S. chrome video cassettes 2-4-6 hrs. playing time Bright picture, true colors, sharp contrast Limit 3 to a customer Also: Individual V.H.S. plastic storage case 99C ea. AVAILABLE IN RECORD DEPT. LEXINGTON AVE Opn Mon.-Sat 10 am pm FORDHAM BO 3TO AVE. BX.-Mon.-Sot 10 am. to 7 45 om. - wTfc. - - wf-wki .w - . sinew, - rww MOn ML to ft.m.-v:30 DM Op Sunocy 1J J .pm pi-nwi dOMd iiay) No maM or ption o4wt.' . f

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