May 19, 2024

Al JarreauAl Jarreau
Accentuate The Positive
(GRP – 2004)
by Carmen Miller

Al says that this CD “is quite different than any other that I have recorded.” After listening to Accentuate the Positive I think that you’ll agree that this is a fresh CD by the old vocal master. All of the songs were recorded in the studio (live) with a quartet. There are no string arrangements, no background arrangements, background vocals or overdue. There were “only two solo’s by harmonica and tenor sax were added after the original sessions where

Listen to Cold Duck using RealAudio.

I sang along with the quartet.” With Accentuate The Positive Jarreau has mixed some classic standards, some jazz standards and added two original pieces to create an simple but effective CD.

You’ll hear the effort on tracks like the snazzy Cold Duck. Dedicated to the memory and music of the late Eddie Harris, Jarreau took the famous instrumental and added lyrics… and some WICKED guitar work by Anthony Wilson, son of jazz pioneer Gerald Wilson. The title track is light and full of humor, much like Johnny Mercer, the writer. Betty is delivered in a soft and gentle vein, testament to jazz diva Betty Carter. Groovin’ High starts out with the trademark Jarreau scatting with the percussion … Dizzy would jump to hear it. Scootcha-Booty is another gem, full of Jarreau style and piano riffing, and there’s an interesting background behind the name. Check back next issue and see our Al Jarreau interview to hear the story.

For more information visit the Al Jarreau Web Site.