JOCELYN MICHELLE

Soul Jazz • United States
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A native of Florida, Jocelyn Michelle has lived in four states including Hawaii since 2013. Jocelyn attended the University of Miami School of Music as a Music Merchandising Major, and is a veteran of the Florida, California and Hawaii music scenes. Her debut CD reflects her diverse musical background and love of soul jazz, Latin influences, classic rock, blues, R & B and traditional bebop. Along with her husband, John Rack, Jocelyn is a founding member of the 12-piece blues band, BluesTrain. She loves to play, and works on as many musical projects as she can get her hands on! Jocelyn is also a student of Hammond B3 legend Tony Monaco.

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Time To Play!Time To Play!
Chicken Coup Records 2016
$5.99
$6.57 (used)
Live At Viva Cantina!Live At Viva Cantina!
Summit Records 2018
$11.62
$8.00 (used)
Time to Play by Jocelyn MichelleTime to Play by Jocelyn Michelle
Chicken Coup Records/Allegro
$33.66
$52.98 (used)
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JOCELYN MICHELLE Discography

JOCELYN MICHELLE albums / top albums

JOCELYN MICHELLE Time to Play album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Time to Play
Soul Jazz 2016

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JOCELYN MICHELLE live albums

JOCELYN MICHELLE Live at Viva Cantina! album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Live at Viva Cantina!
Soul Jazz 2018

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JOCELYN MICHELLE Reviews

JOCELYN MICHELLE Live at Viva Cantina!

Live album · 2018 · Soul Jazz
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js
Jocelyn Michelle is an under-rated Hammond B3 player who performs mostly in Hawaii, and occasionally in the LA area too. “Live at Viva Cantina” is just her second album, and as the title would suggest, this record was recorded live at a Mexican restaurant and music venue in LA. Although this album is live, you will hear very little crowd noise and no clinking of glasses, and the production is quite clean, very much like a studio recording. For her choice of material, Jocelyn reprises some originals from here previous studio album, as well as some crowd pleasing covers too. This is a live restaurant gig, and the choice of tunes reflects that as they cover well known pop hits such as “One Note Samba”, The Pink Panther Theme”, “Groovin” and a few more in this vein. The real musical substance on here though can be found in Jocelyn’s originals, which are all excellent, and really this would have been a better album if they had leaned more in that direction.

Michelle has a rather large band assembled here with two saxophones and two trumpets in addition to a guitar, bass and drums rhythm section. The top soloist is probably Jocelyn herself, who provides punchy rhythmic riffs that stay tight in the pocket, somewhat similar to Jimmy McGriff, Jack McDuff and Brian Auger. All the other soloists are good as well, with both saxophone players shining through with virtuoso RnB/jazz rides that can recall Grover Washington and Stanley Turrentine. This is a great CD for fans of current soul jazz, as well as people looking for a jazz album with more of an extroverted party vibe to it. With a fair amount of well known pop tunes on here, even non-jazz fans are apt to feel the groove.

As mentioned earlier, the preponderance of pop covers on here is understandable given that this is a live gig and Jocelyn and crew set out on purpose to record a ‘party’ album, but still, it would be great if Jocelyn would make an album of mostly originals, she is an excellent writer and really should think about utilizing those talents more.

JOCELYN MICHELLE Time to Play

Album · 2016 · Soul Jazz
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js
Although Jocelyn Michelle has been playing the Hammond B3 for many years in Florida, Los Angeles and Hawaii, she has not been given a chance to lead her own CD until this year’s “Time to Play”. Eager to show what she is capable of, Jocelyn does not hold back and treats us to the myriad styles she works with in the fields of jazz, blues, rock and RnB. Although personal varies a bit per song, most songs feature a small horn section, as well as guitar, drums and percussion. Husband John Rack plays the guitar on the RnB tunes, while Bruce Forman carries the jazzier numbers. Likewise, the smooth tone of saxophonist Doug Webb covers the be-bop flavor, while Steve Mann is featured on the funkier tracks.

The first four tracks on “Time to Play” are probably the best, or at least the most energetic. “Englewood Cliffs” is driving up-tempo hard bop, “Sylvia’s Song” is Latin soul in the style of early Santana, “Trouble Man” is a Marvin Gaye cover given a Steely Dan style swing, and “A Sister’s Love” is hot funk jazz ala Eddie Harris or Grover Washington. Things get a little more mellow when Gina Saputo sings Michelle’s Bossa Nova original, “Oh No, I Could be in Love”. Although the high energy level drops a bit here, it is a very well written original, both in music and lyrics, and it is well sung too. The rest of the CD is good as it moves from more bossa to bop and a dramatic instrumental ballad in “Never Let Me Go”. “The Pink Panther Theme” may seem like an odd choice for a serious jazz band, but Jocelyn makes it work by using enough horns to give it some interesting arrangements. The CD closes with another vocal original called “The Loss”. Once again, it’s a well composed tune, and sung emotionally by Regina Leonard Smyth, but its country-gospel style that recalls Bonnie Raitt or Don Henley, is a bit of a surprise on this otherwise jazzy CD.

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