Online since August 2002

Riding the groove

Reviewed July 2007

By Steve Cole

Narada Jazz: 2007

To hear sound clips or learn more about this release, Turbula recommends viewing its Amazon.com entry.

Saxophonist Steve Cole has settled into a leading and presumably comfortable role as a top-flight smooth jazz artist. His latest CD, "True" (out late last year), should please his existing fan base and bring in even more. Full of hook-laden instrumental R&B and easy listening with a hint of a Latin beat, the nine songs here are all in the patented Cole style. Thick arrangements with a funky backbeat provide a velvety foundation atop which Cole blows his tenor and soprano saxes with more heat than most smooth jazz players.

He's joined on this album by fellow smooth jazz luminaries Jeff Golub (guitar) and Lenny Castro (percussion). They add some nice polish to the proceedings, but this is Cole's show all the way. He wrote all the songs and produced the album; it's a lively, never stale set of uptempo instrumentals.

Review by Jim Trageser. Jim is a writer and editor living in Escondido, Calif., and was a contributor to the "Grove Press Guide to Blues on CD" (1993) and "The Routledge Encyclopedia of the Blues" (2005).

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