GRAB THESE RARE FINDS! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED BY EER-MUSIC.com
John "Jazz Fusion Guy" Patterson grabbed Tightrope and Blue Man himself.
Steve Khan: Tightrope (CD, 37:44); 1977/1998 Columbia 496852 2 Mastersound recording What do you get when you have a superb rhythm section, saucy keyboards, a hot and brassy mini-horn section and one very tasteful jazz and chops-laden guitarist all come together with some jazz and some fusion in mind? You have the magic of Steve Khan and the Brecker Brothers Band come together. With folks like this and Steve Gadd and Bob James too, you have a formula for success. Khan's compositions were smooth yet lively enough not to bore. His unique drive and pristine flourish and tone on his modded Fender Telecaster and even his deft acoustic work all came together to make a very satisfying blend of sexy jazz and funked-up, be bopped fusion. Yet there is that special touch that only Steve Khan can add that makes his releases a signature sound each outing. If you listen closely you will hear Larry Coryell-ian riffs and stylings as Khan and Coryell used to jam together and did record together. Much ado is made about Mike Stern's guitar work in the '80's and '90's but one listen to Khan and you will immediately hear who his big inspiration was. Next time you pick up an old Stern release you stand a good chance of seeing the words "produced by Steve Khan". ~ John W. Patterson, EER-MUSIC.com Personnel: Khan, Steve / electric guitar, electric 12-string guitar, acoustic guitar Brecker, Randy / trumpet Brecker, Michael / tenor saxophone Sanborn David / alto saxophone Grolnick, Don / acoustic piano, fender rhodes, clavinet, organ James, Bob / fender rhodes, oberheim polyphonic synthesizer Lee, Will / bass Gadd, Steve / drums MacDonald, Ralph / percussion Mironov, Jeff / guitar Spinozza, David / guitar Tracks: 1. Some Punk Funk~5:20~Steve Khan 2. Darlin' Darlin' Baby (Sweet Tender Love) ~6:29~K.Gamble, L.Huff 3. Tightrope (for Folon) ~5:44~Steve Khan 4. The Big Ones~6:02~Randy Brecker 5. Star Chamber~5:19~Steve Khan 6. Soft Summer Breeze~5:00~J.Spencer, E.Heywood 7. Where Shadows Meet~3:40~Steve Khan
Steve Khan: The Blue Man (CD, 38:07); 1978/1998 Columbia Mastersound Recording Khan's second release was a self-produced/arranged gem. It was similar in many respects to his prior debut yet this reviewer and other fans recall this release as their all-around favorite from Steve Khan's '70's era recordings. The horn section and solos are still there but Khan does more conversational soloing with the reed lines. This is especially evident on "An Over Autumn" and its fusion jam-fest. The Blue Man seems overall -- tighter, focused, polished and Khan's guitar tone is more overdriven, more jazz rocking, and intensely penetrating in solos and intricate ostinato embellishment around song themes. His delicately reverb, delay, and crystal-clear tones on his solos are rarely heard done so well these days. Khan shows a mastering of tone and subtle bends. His phrasing is so melodic and emotionally rich that it delivers a spine-chill "rush" nearly every ten or fifteen notes. The keyboards and vibes are wonderful, sexy-silky-smooth like a fine-wine, Steely Dan, jazz rocker ballad throughout. Horns do more staccato bursts and the percussion is more varied and polyrhythmic becoming outright funkified boogie in places. That Latin-flavored Santana-esque groove slips through in spots. Khan again offers a beautifully executed acoustic/electric guitar outing echoing a Larry Coryell friendship on "Daily Valley". This release was my first exposure to Steve Khan and made me a devoted listener and collector of his works. It's no wonder his name is resident now with the lists of the great jazz guitarists of fame and genius. ~ John W. Patterson, EER-MUSIC.com Personnel: Steve Khan : electric guitar, electric 12-string guitar, acoustic guitar Jeff Mironov : electric guitar Don Grolnick : fender rhodes, organ, arp string ensemble, arp pro soloist, acoustic piano Bob James : oberheim polyphonic synthesizer Will Lee : electric bass Steve Gadd : drums Ralph MacDonald : percussion, congas Mike Mainieri : marimba Rick Marotta : timbales, cowbell Randy Brecker : trumpet David Sanborn : alto saxophone Michael Brecker : tenor saxophone Tracks: 1. Daily Bulls (7:02) [Steve Khan] 2. The Blue Man (6:01) [Steve Khan] 3. Some Down Time (5:25) [Steve Khan] 4. The Little Ones (5:52) [Randy Brecker] 5. Daily Valley (4:52) [Steve Khan] 6. An Eye Over Autumn (for Folon) (8:48) [Steve Khan]
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