The only vocalist in history to net Grammy Awards in three different categories (jazz, pop, and R&B, respectively). Collection includes: We Got By (1975); Glow (1976); All Fly Home (1978); This Time (1980); Breakin' Away (1981); Jarreau (1983); High Crime (1984); L Is For Lover (1986); Heart's Horizon (1988); Blue Angel (1992) Single; Heaven and Earth (1992); Tenderness (1994)
Al Jarreau and George Duke were friends long before they became household names. They began playing together in the mid-1960's in San Francisco as Al Jarreau and the George Duke Trio. The successes of these performances are what helped to launch both their careers. George's tragic passing in August, 2013, inspired Al to record this loving tribute to his longtime friend. With the exception of the fitting title track composed by Jarreau, all the tunes were written by George. Guest artists/collaborators include Gerald Albright, Stanley Clarke, Dr. John, Lalah Hathaway, Boney James, Marcus Miller, Jeffrey Osborne, Kelly Price, Dianne Reeves and Patrice Rushen. There's even a song with George Duke playing on it!
After years of producing albums which were more pop/funk than jazz oriented, George Duke simmers down, leaves off the R&B vocals, and takes a little creative license on the self-proclaimed "mood record" After Hours. While his recent Muir Woods Suite showed off his affinity for classical music, here he's at his best on the meditative Vince Guaraldi-type trio ballads "Together as One" and "Sweet Dreams," which glide along on the improvisational and gently swinging graces of Christian McBride and Leon "Ndugu" Chancler. A whole project in this vein would have been welcome, but Duke charters other new territory, too; on the easy grooving "The Touch" and the almost new agey "From Dusk Till Dawn," he borrows the actual Rhodes from Joe Sample but winds up perfectly simulating Bob James' "Taxi" vibe, especially on the exploratory solo on the latter tune. The untrained ear might swear it's an actual James recording, but Duke's a clever enough producer to go beyond strict imitation. "The Touch" achieves an intriguing low-toned brew, as Sheridon Stokes' bass flute melody drifts gently over a hypnotic weave of Larry Kimpel's bass and Duke's Rhodes.
Greatest Hits is a fine ten-track overview of the funk keyboardist's late-'70s/early-'80s recordings, containing all three of his Top Ten R&B hits ("Reach for It," "Dukey Stick," "Sweet Baby") plus a good selection of minor hits and album tracks.
Celebrated British bassist GEORGE ANDERSON leads an unusual dual musical life. He is, of course, best known for his work with smooth jazz icons Shakatak. He's a key member of the band – on the road and in the studio. George was also instrumental in co-writing many of Shakatak's best tunes ….most famously 'Day by Day' featuring Grammy award winner Al Jarreau. George was responsible too for co-writing the song 'Perfect Smile' which was a smooth-jazz radio play hit in the US for Shakatak in the 90's.