Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this middle-aged man as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. CDs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no downloads. And just as CD technology (and the album format itself) becomes obsolete. I'm no music critic, just a music junkie with too much time on my hands.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Grover Washington, Jr. - The Best Is Yet To Come (1982)

Note: this release was originally purchased as a LP, later replaced by a "Target" CD.

Not the best GWJr album, but with one of the originators of the smooth jazz/instrumental R&B genre, you know what you're getting into when you buy the thing. It's predictable, formulaic, and even a little dated, but none of that matters because it's perfect music for relaxation, decompressing, and de-stressing. Grover is joined by some of my favorite studio jazzers of the time: Ralph MacDonald (percussion), Marcus Miller (bass), Eric Gale (guitar), and Richard Tee (electric piano).

The title track feature vocals by Patti LaBelle and I'm guessing it was an attempt to repeat the success of Just The Two Of Us from 1980. The single didn't make the Billboard Hot 100, bubbling under at 104, but it did peak at #14 on the R&B singles chart. It was also nominated for the Best Female R&B Vocal Performance category at the Grammy Awards losing to Chaka Khan's eponymous fourth solo album.

Peak on the US Billboard Top 200 chart: #50
Peak on Billboard's Jazz LPs chart: #1
Peak on Billboard's R&B albums chart: #8
Peak on Cash Box album chart: #45

Tracks: The better tracks are Can You Dig It, the title track, and the cleverly titled Mixty Motions. Skip track 4, Things Are Getting Better, with vocals and scat solo by Bobby McFerrin and track 7, I'll Be With You, with vocals from Pieces Of A Dream bassist Cedric Napoleon.

The final track is bland theme music for the short-lived TV series Cassie & Co. I have no memory of that show, but I'm guessing they wanted a film noir kind of theme, maybe? Even an appearance from guitarist Lee Ritenour can't save it, though.

Personal Memory Associated with this CD: None

Previously revisited for the blog:
Prime Cuts: The Columbia Years 1987-1999 (1999)
All My Tomorrows (1994)
Time Out of Mind (1989)
Anthology of Grover Washington, Jr. (1985)
Skylarkin' (1980)
Mister Magic (1975)

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