Louie Shelton

Urban Culture

Nuances/Lighyear 54403-2

Louie Shelton, guitar; Pat McDonald, drums; Victor Wooten, bass; Leroy Ayers, keys; Jeffrey Scott Wills, Jim Horn, Mark Douthit, saxophones; Steve Patrick, Steve Hermann, trumpet; Charles Rose, trombone

Here is one that is a notch above the average. Louie Shelton wrote everything on this CD. He credits his Jazz forebears as being Barney Kessel, Wes Montgomery and Johnny Smith, along with Joe Pass and Howard Roberts. The music on this CD, nevertheless, is not the kind of Jazz that we generally associate with the superstars Shelton reveres. We are given a funky-dunky groove, all very smooth - but listening to Shelton you know that the guy is an absolute professional. His improvisations may not go far, but they are coolly considered and set well within the frame of the material at hand, and the arrangements are pretty classy, too. Wes Montgomery has made music of this (dare we say) commercial nature, so why not Shelton? On the other hand, this reviewer is convinced that the man could easily do an after-hours session that would blow any Jazz lover away. This is splendid guitar playing, a nice middle-of-the-road record. Recommended for Shelton's obvious ability.

by Lawrence Brazier

Editor: This CD is available in Jazz Now Direct mail order catalog.

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