The Best of Marlena Shaw

Marlena Shaw

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The Best of Marlena Shaw Review

by Rob Theakston

Fueled by highly sought fusion musicians of the era (Harvey Mason and Ron Carter are among the many who make appearances) and brilliant production, Marlena Shaw gracefully fuses modern-day funk and soul with her jazz background. Shaw's unique vocal delivery and ability to glue all of these elements together helped to further Blue Note's status into mainstream R&B territory. Nowhere is this more prevalent than her rendition of Marvin Gaye's classic "Save the Children." Calling this compilation The Best of Marlena Shaw is somewhat inaccurate, as it's culled from her tenure at Blue Note records from the early '70s and has many of her early Cadet recordings notably absent. However, this should not deter new listeners from giving this a spin, as the performances are predominately top-notch.

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