June 17, 2024

Hubert Laws
(Savoy Jazz – 2004)
by Ray Redmond

Hubert Laws is back with a CD that proves there’s still some life in that old flute. The title tune Moondance teams Hubert with guest Chris Botti and the smoke flows from start to finish as the duo duels and dances, Botti accenting Laws’ riffs and runs with his distinctive trumpet stylings. Bloodshot brings in smooth jazz legend Jeff Lorber to join Laws on a 70’s style funky-jazz track that really swings; without becoming corny. But everything goes better with Lorber, doesn’t it?

Summer of 75 shows another Hubert Laws as he picks up the piccolo and styles with pianist Brian Culbertson, another smooth jazz giant and producer. Hubert has some nice runs here and the track is really infectuous. Herbie Hancock, who was on CTI records with Laws waaaay back when, makes a guest appearance on Nighttime Daydream. This is my favorite track and brings back memories of the old Wild Flower days… sweet smooth and wonderful.

Malibu and Clarita are the best of the rest, but those first four tracks with guests are well worth the price of admission. The rest of the CD is good Laws, but he really rose up and shone when put to the test with the greats. The rest of the CD is good listening music. If you listen to the first four tracks last, you’ll love the entire CD right away. Check it out for yourself, I think this is definitely a keeper.

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