R n R
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When Rick Braun and Richard Elliot decided to start ARTizen Music Group it was a pretty fair bet collaboration would be on the boards. After all, Rick's best-selling release to date is his collaboration with Boney James (Shake It Up). Richard had toured with Rick numerous times yet hadn't a real studio long-player to share credits with. Nonetheless, for these two stars it had to be perfect. Almost three years later and over half a dozen releases on their label that time had come. The planets aligned and they began writing and recording their own record together. There is an implicit pun evoked in naming this release. The consistent stumbling block to recording together was variously their own records, a tour, someone else's record - never mind having a life. So when they found some time for R(est) n R(elaxtion) - what do they do? They make a record. True to it's namesake, R n R is all about fun.
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Mr. Braun and Mr. Elliot have wonderful solo careers and have collaborated on a well performed
and produced musical effort. Rick Braun has a musical collaboration with Boney James and this release
with Richard Elliot is also a nice addition to a contemporary jazz collection. This 12 pack of songs feature
many familiar musicians whose talents add to a happy musical experience.
Though Elliot and Braun break no new ground whatsoever, they have here assembled a team of very competent session men and produced a CD of an hour's worth of music that even those who hate the smooth jazz genre will find palatable. RnR would be an excellent CD to play as background music at a party or even in the office. There are none of the ooh la la background vocals that contaminate so much of the genre nor is there anything so virtuoso that it requires the full attention of the listener.
Though nothing stands out for me, if I had to choose a couple of cuts as favorites I'd pick The Stranger and the misnamed Two Heart Tango.
Since I need a few CDs like this in my collection for social occasions that require a pleasant and inobtrusive background vibe, I will likely add RnR very soon.