September 27, 2007

leave me wanting another taste...

after posting the peanut butter wolf remix of the free design's "umbrellas" last friday, i haven't been able to stop listening to james mason's fantastic 1977 album, rhythm of life...the sample of mason's "sweet power your embrace" dominates the remix...anyways, mason's only solo album is funky & smooth & definately worthy of being called a "lost classic"'s what dusty groove has to say about it...

Amazing! This is one of the greatest lost fusion albums ever -- and every track is a masterpiece! The album was originally cut for the tiny Chiaroscuro label in 1977 -- and it's got a sound that's unlike anything else we can think of. Strident jazz riffs meet souful female vocals; soaring keyboard lines spiral out over tight funky drumming; and the whole thing grooves mightily with a production style that's incredibly well-handled. This album's a must for fans of spiritual soulful jazz -- like the classic 70s work of Roy Ayers and Leroy Hutson -- but it's also got a unique voice that's totally its own, and totally compelling. Titles include the breakbeat classic "Funny Girl", the monster groover "Sweet Power Your Embrace", the funky "Slick City", and the massive "Free" -- but every cut's a winner. This is the kind of album that makes us proud to be in business!

...amazing is right.

download: james mason - sweet power your embrace
download: james mason - free

related: dusty groove offers two lofty musicians in comparison to mason...the first is roy ayers, who we've mentioned here before, & who's ubiquity project mason was actually part of...his guitar work particularly stands out on the 1977 disco-funk workout, "running away"...the other artist is chicago soul legend (& donny hathaway's college roomate) leroy hutson, an underrated producer/performer who replaced curtis mayfield in the impressions & then later helped mayfield's curtom label gain acclaim with a string of mid-seventies classics...hopefully, we'll show him some more love in the the meantime, james mason's in pretty good company.

download: roy ayers ubiquity - running away (long version)
download: leroy hutson - it's different

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