Kirk Whalum

The Gospel According to Jazz: Chapter 2

  • AllMusic Rating
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Saxophonist Kirk Whalum offers listeners Chapter 2 of his Gospel According to Jazz series with this ten-track collection of brilliant contemporary gospel-jazz. Recorded live at the West Angeles Cathedral in Los Angeles, CA, The Gospel According to Jazz, Chapter 2 rejoins Whalum with the core members from Chapter 1 as well as a host of gospel and jazz dignitaries. The award-winning composer, arranger, and saxophonist wrote eight of the compositions that seek to affect the hearts of listeners -- bypassing the mind -- with the love and power of Jesus, the Great Musician. In this live setting, listeners are afforded the added dimension of the audience's appreciation, which in turn helps to stimulate the aural senses to a higher and more spiritual plane often forgotten in today's hectic world. For example, "Falling in Love With Jesus" offers a tender and moving revelation from Jonathan Butler on lead vocals, which segues into his thanking God and urging listeners to pray. "El Todopoderoso (The All Powerful One)" features the Puerto Rican vocalist Tata Vega and Cuban percussionist Luis Conte alongside Whalum. This up-tempo, Latin-flavored song is a sure testimony that music is not only the universal language of humans but is also used by God as a conduit to reach those in need of his messages. One of the most memorable songs, sung by vocalist Kevin Whalum, is titled "Ta Ta You Jesus." Answering in his saxophone voice, Kirk Whalum's solo matches his brother's vocals note for note. At the end of the song, the audience bursts into an amazing round of applause. Overall, The Gospel According to Jazz, Chapter 2 not only reflects the deep appreciation Whalum has for God, but its glorious musicality is the perfect finish to Chapter 1.

blue highlight denotes track pick