Doc Powell – Life Changes
(Samson – 2001)
by Ricky Miller
Wow! That’s it in a nutshell. The album starts off with the smooth, smoky title track “Life Changes”, definitely a smooth groove. “Brother to Brother” is a familiar tune, done with class and featuring Patrice Rushen on Piano. “It’s a guitar thang” features Powell on both lead and rhythm guitar, grooving with Billy Preston on B-3 and Kirk Whalum on sax. “Your’s Unconditionally” is a 70’s smooth-jazz-ballad.
One of the best tunes on the CD is a Sweet cover of the Caston-Wakefield tune “Tell Her Love Has felt The Need”. The Wurlitzer electric adds an old-school touch to the beautiful vocal performance by Ollie Woodson (formerly of the Temptations). Woodson also delivers a very soulful, gritty performance on Darrell Diaz’ tune “For The Soul In You”.
Doc says that this album “represents the settling-in of all that I am, it summarizes my life and my artistry”. There ARE NO bad tracks on this CD. If you ask me to choose my favorite, it will probably change from day to day, each listening revealing a new aspect or phrase in one of the tunes. Powell wrote or co-wrote eight of the tracks and produced all of them, so the success of this release will stand firmly on his shoulders. And it should be successful!