Tony Guerrero

Different Places

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This wonderfully textured and ultra accessible disc came out a bit late in 1989, but it's definitely one of the best smooth jazz discs of that year. It would take a lot of contemporary jazz brilliance to outshine this stellar collection, which finds the young Guerrero surrounded by pop jazz elite like Brandon Fields, Sam Riney, Brian Bromberg, and Steve Reid.

The flugelhorn has a very smooth, lilting feel to it, but Guerrero and co-producer/wordless vocalist Bill Cantos find a way to find the funk on well titled numbers like "Slam Shack" (which features Bromberg improvising on synth bass and a sweet alto interlude by Fields), the American Bandstand theme sound of the just for kicks "The Buckethead Shuffle," and the best cut, "Hi Tops," whose synth hook -- played by Guerrero -- is reminiscent of the theme from The Rockford Files. Guerrero's horn has a rich melt in your mouth urgency about it, but he unselfishly shares the spotlight with Fields on the smooth gem "One Last Time." The varied samba rhythms of the tribute to Chuck Mangione add some nice variety. Surprisingly the weakest tune here is the somewhat downcast title track. But for every lull, there is driving stuff like "Strut," and the above average vocal by Tollak Ollestad on "If You're Gonna Stay."

Track Listing

Title/Composer Performer Time
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