Stepping into Tomorrow

Stepping into Tomorrow

by Donald Byrd

CD

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Overview

Stepping into Tomorrow

Beginning with a crack of thunder, like it was made to trail Gary Bartz's "Mother Nature" (actually recorded at a slightly later date), Stepping into Tomorrow contains almost all of the Mizell trademarks within its title track's first 30 seconds: a soft and easy (yet still funky) electric-bass-and-drums foundation, silken rhythm guitar, organ and piano gently bouncing off one another, light synthesizer shading, and coed group vocals to ensure true liftoff. It's only one in a line of many magnetic '70s sessions led by Fonce and Larry Mizell, and it differs from their two previous Donald Byrd dates -- the polarizing and groundbreaking Black Byrd and the deceptively excellent Street Lady -- by not featuring any of Roger Glenn's flute, and by focusing on heavily melodic and laid-back arrangements. Even the speedy "You Are the World," by some distance the most energetic song, seems more suited for relaxing in a hammock than shooting down a freeway. Many of the musicians present on the previous Byrd-Mizell meetings are here, including drummer Harvey Mason, bassist Chuck Rainey, keyboardist Jerry Peters, and guitarist David T. Walker. As ever, those who pined for the approach of Byrd's '60s dates would tune out a sublime set of material, but maybe some of those who sniffed at the straightforward nature of some of the rhythms and riffing were won over by the supreme layering of the many components (the way in which "Think Twice" lurches forward, peels back, and gathers steam is nothing short of heavenly), not to mention some deeply evocative playing from Byrd himself.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/28/2000
Label: Blue Note Records
UPC: 0724352354528
catalogNumber: 23545
Rank: 33104

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Donald Byrd   Primary Artist,Trumpet,Flugelhorn,Vocals,Soloist
Gary Bartz   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone,Soprano Saxophone
Chuck Rainey   Bass,Electric Bass
David T. Walker   Guitar
James Carter   Human Whistle
Margie Evans   Background Vocals
Harvey Mason   Harmonica,Drums,Bata Drums
Fonce Mizell   Clarinet,Trumpet,Background Vocals,Clavinet
Larry Mizell   Synthesizer,Conductor,Background Vocals,ARP,fender rhodes
Freddie Perren   Background Vocals
Jerry Peters   Organ,Piano
John Rowin   Guitar
Stephanie Spruill   Percussion,Background Vocals
Mayuto Correa   Conga
Roger Sainte   Percussion
Kay Haith   Background Vocals
Lorraine Kennar   Background Vocals
Fred Perrin   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

George "Wild Child" Butler   Executive Producer
Donald Byrd   Artist Consultant
George Butler   Executive Producer
Michael Cuscuna   Reissue Producer
Val Garay   Engineer,Remixing
David Hassinger   Engineer,Remixing
Harvey Mason   Arranger
Fonce Mizell   Arranger,Producer,Vocal Arrangements
Larry Mizell   Arranger,Composer,Producer,Vocal Arrangements
Freddie Perren   Vocal Arrangements
Sigidi   Arranger
Patrick Roques   Reissue Design
John Mills   Engineer
John H.R. Mills   Engineer
Fred Perrin   Vocal Arrangements

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