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Moonlighting
     

Moonlighting

4.0 1
by The Rippingtons
 

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Can you possibly find a more stellar lineup than the one on this album? These days, the Rippingtons are, of course, one of smooth jazz's most popular and enduring outfits, but founder Russ Freeman initially envisioned the group as featuring a revolving door of great players. For this debut recording, the guitarist called on some friends to "moonlight" from their own

Overview

Can you possibly find a more stellar lineup than the one on this album? These days, the Rippingtons are, of course, one of smooth jazz's most popular and enduring outfits, but founder Russ Freeman initially envisioned the group as featuring a revolving door of great players. For this debut recording, the guitarist called on some friends to "moonlight" from their own careers to play on the album. Captured moments before their ascent into the musical stratosphere are saxophonists Kenny G and Dave Koz and keyboardist David Benoit. The tunes were composed by Freeman, including the classic "She Likes to Watch." Here Kenny G's sax twines sinuously around Freeman's irresistible melody to create a tune that's impossible to forget. Freeman's rock guitar and Kenny G's soprano sax do playful battle throughout "Open All Night," which also features a rapid-fire keyboard solo by Gregg Karukas. Top players performing great tunes -- how could MOONLIGHTING be anything but musical magic?

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jonathan Widran
Released in 1986, this album not only stands as a genre-defining primer on what has become known as smooth jazz, but it also helped launch the careers of various artists whose music has been crucial to the genre's vitality. In addition to composer/guitarist/producer Russ Freeman and the Ripps, there's David Benoit (playing a gorgeous piano melody on "Mirage"), keyboardist Gregg Karukas, bassist Jimmy Johnson (who scored hits with Flim & the BBs), saxmen Brandon Fields and Dave Koz (whose floating Electronic Wind Instrument melody guides the silky "Dreams"), and some soprano-wielding guy named Kenny G. One of the G-man's least cloying -- and indeed, most engaging -- performances can be heard on the lilting, Calypso-influenced "She Likes to Watch." (One of Freeman's best tunes, it continues to get heavy airplay.) The opening, six-minute title track -- a guitar-driven, light funk tune that weaves percussionist Steve Reid's nature soundscaping and exotic sound effects with a hypnotic synth melody -- epitomizes the kind of smooth texturing for which the Rippingtons became famous. While the band's personnel has evolved, the best tunes on the Ripps' more recent recordings still feature Freeman jamming on guitars and Reid brewing up just the right amount of aggression and subtlety with his toys. The all-star personnel alone makes this a must-hear all these years later. The fact that it still holds up melodically, rhythmically, and production-wise makes it one of smooth jazz's most important and enjoyable recordings.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/29/1990
Label:
Grp Records
UPC:
0011105960526
catalogNumber:
9605

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Rippingtons   Primary Artist
Kenny G   Soprano Saxophone
Gregg Karukas   Keyboards
Dave Koz   EWI
Steve Reid   Percussion,Drums
David Benoit   Piano
Brandon Fields   Alto Saxophone
Bill Lanphier   Bass
Tony Morales   Percussion,Cymbals,Drums
Jimmy Johnson   Bass
Russ Freeman   Guitar,Electric Guitar,Keyboards,Synthesizer Guitar

Technical Credits

Steve Reid   Programming,Soundscape
Jim Snowden   Executive Producer
Steven Sharp   Engineer
Russ Freeman   Programming,Producer

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Moonlighting 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago