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It's Uptown Extra tracks, Import


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Audio CD, Extra tracks, Import, June 19, 2001
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After four years of touring and developing “An Unforgettable Tribute to Nat King Cole,” the legendary George Benson makes his most inspired album: Inspiration: A Tribute to Nat King Cole. Set for release June 4, 2013, this recording is one of the most meaningful of Benson’s career and is a testament to the spirit of Cole’s timeless body of work. Benson’s ... Read more in Amazon's George Benson Store

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 19, 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Extra tracks, Import
  • Label: Columbia Europe
  • ASIN: B00005KKNN
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #678,373 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Clockwise
2. Summertime
3. Ain't That Peculiar
4. Jaguar
5. Willow Weep For Me
6. A Foggy Day
7. Hello Birdie
8. Bullfight
9. Stormy Weather
10. Eternally
11. Myna Bird Blues
12. J.H. Bossa Nova
13. Clockwise (Alternate Take)
14. Eternally (Short Version)
15. Sideman
16. Minor Chant

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By "songlife" on August 24, 2002
Format: Audio CD
"It's Uptown" was recorded when George was only 23 and already a virtuoso. His flying fingers and stunning creativity are all over every song. He controls the flow totally, and at the time of recording he and his band were obviously very well rehearsed. Lonnie Smith, the organ player, has proven himself to be a unique player on his own recordings, and on this date he plays well but is a little further back in the mix than usual, although his strong presence is felt on every song. The other important member was Ronnie Cuber, whose baritone sax is always perfectly in unison with George's creative guitar lines. When Ronnie gets a chance to solo, he makes the most of it, and his deep-toned baritone sax gave the quartet the edge it had over the typical tenor/organ trios of the day.
Another factor in the success of this album is the writing. The tunes George wrote, as well as the covers, are highly melodic and always interesting. On his solos, George is digging in hard, you can hear it, trying to lay down a solo he'll be happy with - which for him was an enormously high goal every time. George demands extremely high quality in his music, and in order to do that, he had to practice hard enough to get to be one of the best guitar players in the world. Only then would he be able to satisfy himself, and at the time of this recording (his second album), he was nearly there, although probably not even close in his own mind. Another factor was his tenure with Jack McDuff's group; he's said that playing live every night with Jack forced him to come up with consistently inventive solos, to avoid repeating himself. That's how he "got good". (Hard to understand why McDuff never let him sing, although I've heard McDuff hated singers).
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By P.J. Le Faucheur on August 26, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Benson was infact a vocalist before he was a guitarist so this is probably why vocals play a big part on alot of his albums. On this one he sounds abit like your average club singer and on the cover he resembles Eddie Murphy.
His guitar though is the stand out feature. When i first heard these tracks back in 1977 (from a budget price double LP called "Benson Burner") i couldn't equate the artist featured with the same one who'd just released "The Greatest Love Of All". " Clockwise", "Mynah Bird Blues" and the other blues based tunes are all miniature masterpieces. His solos are like a coiled spring that's been unleashed. The guitar break on the 3/4 timed "Hello Birdie" will hit you like a guided missile. Alot of his phrasing reminds one of Django Reinhardt (during his electric phase) but when he launches into full bebop mode he becomes himself. His version of "Willow Weep For Me" is one of the finest done on guitar.
Amongst others Charlie Christian comes to mind when one hears George solo on this album. Ron Cubers baritone has a hard time keeping pace but manages well. With the exception of "Aint That Peculiar"(which is has a hip 60s R&B groove)and "Bullfight' most of the tracks on here are straight ahead jazz aimed at guitar players mainly.
50 years from now this album will still be essential for guitarists to collect.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Andrew R. Patton on July 16, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Great reissue of what I'm now realizing is a classic album. If you like Benson's talent but think he's a big pop sellout, then this album is for you! He only sings on 3 tracks (#2,6,9), and even when he does, they feel like jazz standards and not pop songs. Instead, he focuses on ripping up the guitar, and does so quite well. Lonnie Smith is smokin' on the organ, and Benson's use of baritone saxophonist Ronnie Cuber in his quartet makes for a sharper, more bottom-heavy sound than the usual organ outfit. I'm a bari sax player myself, and if I had half of Cuber's tone or solo abilities, I'd be a happy man. Highly recommended for all you soul jazz or jazz guitar fans!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By D. FRENETTE on February 6, 2006
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
If you dig this kind of music just get it. I picked it up on Amazon used at a very low price and I am WAY glad I did. I love the short version of Summertime on this cd. And the most upbeat version of Stormy Weather ever. As for the instrumentals what can I say, it is early George Benson. Hello Birdie is a major highlight but the entire cd is great.
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