Red Hot + Rhapsody: The Gershwin Groove

Red Hot + Rhapsody: The Gershwin Groove


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Red Hot + Rhapsody: The Gershwin Groove

Another year, another Red Hot project of unlikely musical bedfellows, this time paying tribute in their divergent ways to George Gershwin in the year of his centennial. All kinds of styles are tossed about, from a full symphony orchestra to the latest hip-hop and retro-electronic techniques. The tracks that work the best are those that seem to use Gershwin simply as a point of departure for their own agendas: to cite a few, Smoke City's odd combination of electronica and Brazilian rhythm on "They Can't Take That Away from Me," Michael Franti's interpolated ghetto raps in the middle of Spearhead/Ernest Ranglin's cool, hip-hop "I Got Plenty O' Nuthin." As a pocket sampling of the differing approaches, Morcheeba's ultra-sultry vocal teams up with Hubert Laws' flute on a most effective "Summertime," while an aging Bobby Womack successfully fuses rap and '70s funk on the same tune. On the other hand, while it's nice to hear performers from the ranks of Generation X and thereabouts taking enough interest in Gershwin to try and interpret his tunes straight on, many of them simply do not have the expressiveness in their voices to get much out of the songs. Either that or their deliberately ironic stances preclude emotion; nothing seems to touch them, they sound disembodied and vacant. Rock veteran David Bowie turns out to be the most affecting balladeer of them all in "A Foggy Day," accompanied by film composer Angelo Badalamenti's brooding strings. The only standalone jazz personality is Clark Terry, who growls a brief "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off" in his "mumbles" voice while blowing a bit of muted trumpet overhead. Though backloading the CD with sustained ballads drains much of its energy, the album is never less than absorbing. Yet there is little fusion of eras and attitudes, nor a sense of passing the torch as there is on the thrilling Red Hot + Rio package.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/06/1998
Label: Polygram Records
UPC: 0731455778823
catalogNumber: 557788


  1. Summertime
  2. It Ain't Necessarily So
  3. But Not for Me
  4. They Can't Take That Away From Me
  5. I Got Plenty O' Nuttin'
  6. Summertime
  7. I Was Doing All Right
  8. Embraceable You
  9. Let's Call The Whole Thing Off
  10. I've Got A Crush On You
  11. Peter Sellers Sings George Gershwin
  12. Nice Work If You Can Get It  -  Majestic
  13. The Man I Love
  14. 'S Wonderful/Rhapsody In Blue  -  Skylab
  15. Someone to Watch over Me
  16. Bess, You Is My Woman Now
  17. Suite For A Foggy Day (In London Town)

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Baaba Maal   Vocals,Track Performer
David Bowie   Vocals,Track Performer
Bobby Womack   Guitar,Vocals,Track Performer
Hubert Laws   Flute,Track Performer
Grady Tate   Drums
Walter Booker   Bass
Luscious Jackson   Track Performer
Spearhead   Track Performer
Angelo Badalamenti   Keyboards,Track Performer
Chris Botti   Trumpet
John Campo   Bassoon
Clark Terry   Trumpet,Vocals,Track Performer
Todd Coolman   Bass
Sarah Cracknell   Vocals,Track Performer
Davina   Track Performer
Michael Franti   Vocals
Natalie Merchant   Bass,Track Performer
Money Mark   Track Performer
Sinéad O'Connor   Track Performer
Ernest Ranglin   Guitar,Track Performer
Albert Regni   Alto Saxophone
Kate Schellenbach   Drums
Duncan Sheik   Track Performer
Vivian Trimble   Accordion,Keyboards
Josephine Wiggs   Bass
Joel O'Brien   Piano
Andre Badalamenti   Clarinet,Conductor
Chris Franck   Guitar,Percussion
Sherry Sylar   Oboe
Carl Young   Bass,Keyboards
Petra Haden   Violin
Roots   Track Performer
Jill Cunniff   Vocals
Liliana Chachian   Vocals
James Gray   Keyboards
Morcheeba   Track Performer
Ross Godfrey   Guitar
Skye Edwards   Vocals
Matteo Saggese   Keyboards
Finley Quaye   Bass,Vocals,Track Performer
Kid Loco   Track Performer
Smoke City   Track Performer
Anthony Brewster   Keyboards
Majestic   Track Performer
Scott Storch   Keyboards

Technical Credits

George Gershwin   Composer
Barry Reynolds   Arranger,Producer
John Carlin   Producer,Liner Notes,Executive Producer
George Cowan   Engineer
Pete Craigie   Engineer
Michael Franti   Producer
Ira Gershwin   Composer
Andrew Hale   Engineer
Paul Hussey   Engineer
Dave Ivory   Engineer
Natalie Merchant   Producer
Sinéad O'Connor   Producer
Phil Ramone   Producer
Bernard Terry   Engineer
Andre Badalamenti   Arranger
Carlos Bess   Programming,Producer,Engineer
Richard Nichols   Executive Producer
Tony Mangurian   Producer,Engineer
Patrick Zimmerli   Arranger
Paul Godfrey   Programming,beats
Pascal Colomb   Engineer
Paul Heck   Producer
DuBose Heyward   Composer
Finley Quaye   Producer
Peter Nashel   Producer,Engineer

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