- Audio CD (June 15, 1995)
- Original Release Date: January 18, 1994
- Number of Discs: 1
- Format: Live
- Label: NYC (New York City)
- ASIN: B000006MCH
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #215,027 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
Live in Tokyo 1986
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This is the only live recording featuring the legendary line-up of Michael Brecker, Mike Mainieri, Mike Stern, Daryl Jones & Steve Smith.
About the Artist
Steps Ahead, one of the most influential jazz groups since their first debut is an all-star jazz oriented R&B band that originally included such players as Mike Brecker, Don Grolnick, Eddie Gomez and Steve Gadd in it's original line-up. Mainieri has revived the group several times since with such musicians as Warren Bernhardt, Eliane Elias, Rachel Z, Mike Stern, Tony Levin, Victor Bailey, Peter Erskine, Steve Smith and Bendik.
Top customer reviews
I had heard Michael Brecker before but didn't realize back then just how great a musician he was and what a major force in jazz.
So one thing I have been doing up is getting Michael Brecker's albums, which range from good to astounding. in general I like the Milestone ones the best-they are more melodic than some of his more recent recordings)
So once I had most of his recordings, what next? Well, what else does he play on? Oh, here is this group Steps Ahead he played with in the 80s.
I ordered a few Steps Ahead recordings and this is the first one I got. I listened to the first song the other day and thought, well maybe this is a clunker. Hardly. It turns out I didn't care a whole lot for that song but everything else on this album I love.
And Mike Mainieri is a fine musician. After hearing this I looked him up on wiki and it appears his main muscial legacy is what he did with Steps Ahead. Well, judging from what I've heard so far, not a bad legacy. All of the musicians on this album I like.
As someone pointed out, In a Sentimental Mood is excellent. It is a fusion version of a jazz standard but it not a raspy electric version but rather a very soulful rendition that is respectful of the beauty of the piece.
I now wonder if these guys did more jazz standards on other albums, that would be great. I've got a couple coming in the mail soon so I will know shortly.
Most of the songs are composed by Brecker or Mainieri and they are excellent.
One superficial point but worth mentioning just for comic relief: Who came up with the cover art that highlights something that looks like a tape dispenser! egad!
One little superficial observation I thought was interesting. Hadn't listened to these guys for a while lately and listened just now. I have such a terrible memory I was trying to remember the musicians as I listened to "Cajun". Michael Brecker of course. And what was the name of that Vibraphone player who's of comparable talent to the best Jazz vibe players and yet never got the same sort of recognition as your Milt Jacksons or Bobby Hutchersons? Why, that is Mike Mainieri of course. And who is that guy who plays to fine guitar solo? Why that is Mike Stern.
It occurred to me: Three Mikes. Brecker, Mainieri, and Stern.
The bassist and drummer sound good, too, although they are not familiar to me and I am rather partial to Eddie Gomez and Peter Erskine since they are a couple of fine musicians I wasn't really familiar with until I came to appreciate their work from what I heard of it on Steps/Ahead recordings.
If you are a jazz player, don't miss this!!!!!