Blake Aaron – Soul Stories (2015)

Blake Aaron - Soul Stories (2015)
Artist: Blake Aaron
Album: Soul Stories
Genre: Smooth Jazz, Crossover Jazz, Guitar Jazz
Origin: USA
Released: 2015
Quality: mp3, 320 kbps

Tracklist:
Groove-O-Matic
Wes’ Side Story
Sol Amor
Europa
You’re the One for Me (feat. Spencer Day)
Story of the Blues
Sara Smile
Story of My Life
You’re My Miracle
Encantadora (feat. Najee)

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It was over a year ago that Innervision Records trailed the album ‘Soul Stories’ by guitarist Blake Aaron with the 70s disco vibe of ‘Groove-O-Matic’. It enjoyed an extended stay on both the Groove Jazz and Billboard Smooth Jazz charts so now, with the May 2015 release of the complete CD almost upon us, the time has come to take a more holistic view of what is Aaron’s fifth solo studio project. It is another step on the road for an artist who with his own radio show, a parallel career of composing for the world of film and television and a hectic tour schedule, could never be accused of lacking profile.

‘Soul Stories’ is, by and large, all Aaron’s own work yet he still finds time for a faithful rendering of Carlos Santana’s ‘Europa’ and a very moody take on the Hall & Oates classic ‘Sara Smile’. However it is for his own music that ‘Soul Stories’ will be remembered and in this respect ‘Sol Amor’ proves to be a zesty Latin concoction that Aaron plays with some style. Another of his own compositions that has also enjoyed radio time is the pop orientated ‘You’re The One For Me’ which features vocalist Spencer Day while with ‘Encantadora’ Aaron adds another splash of Latin color.

For a recording named ‘Soul Stories’ it should not be surprising to find two songs with ‘Story’ in the title. The first of these, ‘Story Of The Blues’, is a big expansive guitar driven ballad and later ‘Story Of My Life’ finds him in an altogether more mellow mood. Here the piano of Rob Mullins is particularly enchanting and when Mullins returns to lend a hand with ‘Wes Side Story’ he assists Aaron in paying his respects to the legendary Wes Montgomery.

All things considered ‘Groove-O-Matic’ will probably be judged as the album’s best track although in terms of personal favorites it is the genuinely soulful vocals of Derek Bordeaux that helps the mid tempo, groove drenched ‘You’re My Miracle’ to stand out from the crowd.

Worth checking out

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