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1514 Oliver Avenue


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Audio CD, October 22, 2013
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1514 Oliver Avenue + Purple Snow: Forecasting the Minneapolis
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 22, 2013)
  • Original Release Date: 2013
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Numero Junior
  • ASIN: B00EP22PFW
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #438,495 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Donald E. Gilliland on August 15, 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I knew next to nothing about this band, but seeing that it was on the always excellent Numero Group label, I felt confident it would be a keeper, And indeed it is. Mind & Matter was a very interesting late 1970s soul group from Minneapolis featuring James "Jimmy Jam" Harris, the musician/songwriter who later gained fame penning songs and producing music for the likes of Janet Jackson, New Edition, Boyz II Men, Michael Jackson, Mariah Carey, and many others.

Harris was only 18 years old when most of these recordings were made, but even at that young age he clearly shows an ability for song craftsmanship and a flair for using killer harmonies in the song arrangements. The emphasis is more on mainstream soul than anything more funky. In the liner notes it says that Harris "aimed for songs that might've found favor with the groups he himself revered: Blue Magic, the Stylistics, the O'Jays."

There is also a heavy emphasis on keyboards throughout these recordings, everything from Clavinet and Hammond B2 organ to Fender Rhodes and Wurlitzer electric piano. Again, Lewis was influenced by the sounds of popular musicians of the era such as Stevie Wonder and Billy Preston. In the liner notes he explains: "It was my quest in life to get a clavinet. That was the keyboard I had to have once I figured out what it was. I started out as a drummer, and so I had rhythm. And the fact that there was a keyboard that actually rewarded you, if you will, for having rhythm." Thus, Harris developed a "clavinet obsession," and most of these songs resonate with those sweet but dated keyboard sounds.
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