Stanley Jordan

Magic Touch/Standards, Vol.1/Flying Home

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This double-disc reissue by BGO in the U.K. includes three of guitarist Stanley Jordan's early recordings: 1985's Magic Touch, 1986's Standards, Vol. 1, and 1988's Flying Home, all of which were released by Blue Note. Magic Touch features Jordan's unaccompanied playing in a series of jazz and pop standards that showcase the signature, dexterous, tapping guitar style which makes his guitar technique akin to that of a pianist. Standards, Vol.1 is a similar program played in the same manner. Flying Home deviates from that approach considerably. Here, in what was essentially deemed a complete betrayal by jazz purists, Jordan composed all but one tune on the set -- "Stairway to Heaven" no less -- and utilized popular music studio production technology -- overdubbing, layering keyboards, and programmed drum machines -- in an attempt to crossover. While the other two recordings remain stellar examples of Jordan as an utterly unique guitarist, it's the latter album that has become a favorite of an international group of DJs and dance music producers for its sampling possibilities.

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