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  • Restoration: Best of Bob James
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Restoration: Best of Bob James Import


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Audio CD, Import, November 20, 2001
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

His first "best-of" gets the job done right: 2 CDs with 28 tracks from 21 albums spanning more than 25 years! Disc one includes his 1974 hit Feel Like Making Love ; his famous Taxi theme, Angela ; funky, much-sampled tracks like Westchester Lady and Night Crawler , and more. Disc two features his collaborations with David Sanborn, Earl Klugh, Grover Washington, Jr. and many others.

Amazon.com

Pianist-composer Bob James has been a mainstay on the contemporary jazz scene from the early '70s to today. His bell-like electric piano sound made him a radio favorite and a Grammy Award winner. This two-CD set contains James's greatest hits. There are the hip-hop sampled, snappy CTI label smashes like "Nautilus" and "Westchester Lady," as well as the plaintive "Touchdown" and the popular "Angela (The Theme from Taxi)" from his Columbia Records days. But there's also "Hockney" and the classical work, "Farandole," which showcase his beautiful acoustic jazz piano sound and his overlooked arranging skills. This compendium includes a multitude of sideman and collaborators, including Hubert Laws, Jon Faddis, Earl Klugh, Ron Carter, and David Sanborn. "Brighton by the Sea" with Grover Washington Jr. (originally appearing on James's H album), is rhythmically revamped with a zesty 21st-century drum & bass remix, showing that the music of Bob James is melodic, moving, and modern. --Eugene Holley Jr.

Disc: 1
1. Feel Like Making Love
2. Nautilus
3. Farandole (L'Arlesienne Suite #2)
4. Westchester Lady
5. Storm King
6. Tappan Zee
7. Night Crawler
8. Angela (Theme From "Taxi")
9. Touchdown
10. Kari - Bob James & Earl Klugh
See all 13 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Maputo - Bob James & David Sanborn
2. Ashanti
3. Restoration
4. Bare Bones
5. Movin' On - Bob James & Earl Klugh
6. Lotus Leaves
7. Restless
8. Storm Warning - Hillary James & Bob James
9. Kickin' Back - Bob James & Kirk Whalum
10. Hockney - Bob James Trio
See all 15 tracks on this disc

Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 20, 2001)
  • Original Release Date: 2001
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Imports
  • ASIN: B00005RGNJ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,540 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By William Merrill TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 20, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Bob James has taken a fair amount of abuse over the years, but I've enjoyed much of his music, especially his "light & lively" period of the late '70s (on his own Tappan Zee label) and his work with Fourplay. Typical of the slams inflicted on him were these derogatory comments from The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide, published in 1985: "...(James was) the architect for Seventies Muzak jazz...the records are unfortunately not much fun to listen to...(etc.)." To counter that criticism, I'd merely ask you to listen to "Angela (Theme From 'Taxi')," "Maputo" from his duo CD with David Sanborn, the snazzy "Shamboozie," or any of several other cool tracks off of this collection. And just look at the list of people he's worked with. Besides Mr. Sanborn and Kirk Whalum, there are the familiar pairings with Earl Klugh, plus a mighty host of great side musicians ranging from Grover Washington, Jr. and Eric Gale to Eddie Daniels and Chuck Loeb. This double-CD set, Restoration, is an excellent summation of Bob's career -- from all 3 labels he recorded for (but no Fourplay) -- and it makes for some very melodious and pleasurable jazz listening. Call it a guilty pleasure if you must, but I'm not giving up my Bob James!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Philip A Montalvo on August 30, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Bob James music has been a major soundtrack for my life since 1974 (and Earl Klugh 1977) replacing the Beatles(rock)of my adolescence as a major influence! The compilation as a whole is excellent but I was really disappointed by the edits of "Kari" and "Feel Like Making Love". Anyone not familiar with Bob James' music probably wouldn't notice a thing and still enjoy these tracks. The only thing I could relate this to in some manner, is like hearing the "Top 40" version of "Light my Fire" by the Door's or "Oye Como Va" by Santana versus the longer versions on the albums.
The edit of "Kari" trucates Earl Klugh's "gorgeous" acoustic guitar solo and the edit of "Feel like Making Love" chops Bob James electric piano solo that defines so much of the style of his later work!
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Frederick Baptist on December 2, 2005
Format: Audio CD
I have to confess that I only really got this disc because I loved "Angela-The Theme From Taxi" and so I didn't really want to get everything the man has ever done and so I waited and searched high and low for a cd like this and my prayers were answered! Not only did I finally get the track but I was very impressed by the other tracks on the 2 discs. Great smooth jazz and although no mention of any remastering is made clearly on the disc, I have to say that the sound quality is amazing! I've heard many "remastered" discs that are blatant misrepresentations and only a very few that are clear improvements over the original but this disc sounds a lot better than even many of those! For the lover of smooth jazz and those who want to get a great truly representative best of compilation of the man but not get all the albums, this is the best version that's currently out there and I think the only one really. Highly recommended.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By quietstorm on February 2, 2002
Format: Audio CD
I like all the songs, but some of my favorites are not on here. This guy has dozens and dozens of amazing songs, and they are really diverse, so it's hard to pick his greatest. If you are contemplating getting this because you like one of his songs or works, I'd just start buying his individual releases. Avoid the most recent (Dancing on the Water) until you've tried some of his other, better stuff. Try Sign of the Times, or Grand Piano Canyon. Listen, this guy has so much good stuff you wouldn't believe it. And the stuff that sounds lame at first grows on you. If you get this greatest hits and like it but then hesitate to get indivual releases, don't worry, some of his releases are so good that every song is good.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Hiram Gomez Pardo HALL OF FAME on May 15, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Bob James will be reminded as one of the most remarkable innovators of the new sounds of jazz and ture herald of what we commonly denominate as smooth jazz. His sense of the musicality and extraordinary talent made of him a pathfinder. His musical colleagues such Earl Klugh or David Sanborn have been launched by this driving force, an anthological legend named Bob James.

This set is a fundamental compilation of his best works, with first - rate sound.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By T. Burket VINE VOICE on January 6, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I was a Bob James fan from his first albums through Touchdown, on vinyl. I haven't bought one of his recordings for 25 years or more. Thus, "Restoration" is an excellent return for me to his smooth jazz sound, which is relatively timeless as well as high quality. Of course, the famous "Angela" (Taxi) is here, without dominating the album.

The second disc, which covers approximately the mid-1980s to 2001, was fresh to me as someone unfamiliar with the songs. Whether they are a reasonable sample of his later albums or not, I cannot comment, but they are certainly rich, with a nice variety and excellent musicianship throughout, as expected with Bob James in control. We even hear some vocals (!) by Bob's daughter and others.

My preferences run to the songs where the horns are more subdued, letting more of the complexity and subtlety come through.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Karen Dougherty on July 23, 2007
Format: Audio CD
The best of his years. He has put together all of his wonderful works in a 2 CD collection that can't be beat. A great CD for those who know and love Bob James and for those that want to be introduced to his style.
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