In 2008 ABYSSJazz had this to say about the new kids on the block, Jazz-Funk-Rock gurus, 25th Street Band, and their 2007 release, The Key of H, “London has long been known as a cultural centre for music, having played a major role in many popular music movements. It has been the place where all kinds of music streams merge. Its numerous venues have also been the launch pad for countless aspiring artists. One group for which melding is most evident is the 25th Street Band, created by Russ Klinger and Dave Radner … London has done it again! Key of H raises the smooth jazz bar another octave.”
It’s six years later and the 25th Street Band is no longer London’s fair-head child, they have expanded their reach to include an international audience. The 2014 version of 25th Street Band is bigger, boulder, and bad to the bone. This group is at the top of their game doing what they do best, raising the smooth jazz bar.
Russ Klinger and Dave Radnor combined their considerable talents and abilities (guitar, keyboards, and instrument programming) with the expertise of top-notch musicians and vocalists from the U.S., Canada, and Ireland to bring their unique music blend of jazz, funk, and rock laced with soul-stirring melodies and interesting flavors to the table in their latest release, Dawn Of My Career. The posse: Morning Locket (sax), Hussain Jiffry (bass), Ollie James (vocals), Tom Brechtlein (drums), Ann Baily (vocals), and Bill McBirnie (flute),
Skyway starts the set with this great guitar/keyboard interplay and then we get Mornington Lockett on sax, okay! Now, Timo is so cool sportin’ some mighty fine background vocals and that baseline is off the chain, hello Hussain Jiffry. I adore Ann Bailey vocals on Golden Moments; the song is soft, she sounds so sweet; this tune pulls at your heart-strings, ohmi. And, Ollie James vocals on title track, Dawn Of My Career, what can I say, it’s all good. Jazzira and Bill McBirnie’s flute, ohmigracious, a 12-minute track, you know they bringing it and everybody gets a piece of the action including drummer Tom Brechtlein whoa!
From beginning to end, Dawn Of My Career, is on point. Not a fast-forward moment on the disc; each track is a keeper. Kudos to Russ and Dave for their wizardry as writers, arrangers, and producers and their posse for all the toe-tapping-finger popping-shoulder action moments, y’all got us out of our seats and on our feet. Yes!
For me Dawn Of My Career is the perfect ride out music reminiscent of The Rippingtons’, Live In LA. It doesn’t matter if I’m tooling around the city, navigating rush hour traffic, or cursing down the highway, Dawn Of My Career is my road dog. Highly recommended … four octaves and rising!
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