Jazz Related RnB

Jazz music community with review and forums

The line between jazz and RnB is often blurry. Both styles of music come from the same sources and both influence each other as they constantly cross paths. The Jazz Related RnB genre at JMA pays tribute to RnB bands that are not jazz bands in name only. For example, the early to mid-70s version of Earth Wind and Fire caught the attention of many jazz and fusion fans with their virtuoso horn charts, poly-rhythmic foundation and extended harmonies over modern jazz chord changes. Many of the RnB artists listed in this genre had a strong impact on the development of jazz.

jazz related rnb top albums

Showing only albums and live's | Based on members ratings & JMA custom algorithm | 24 hours caching

STEVIE WONDER Songs in the Key of Life Album Cover Songs in the Key of Life
STEVIE WONDER
4.72 | 11 ratings
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STEELY DAN Aja Album Cover Aja
STEELY DAN
4.61 | 24 ratings
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STEELY DAN Countdown to Ecstasy Album Cover Countdown to Ecstasy
STEELY DAN
4.50 | 20 ratings
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EARTH WIND & FIRE Gratitude Album Cover Gratitude
EARTH WIND & FIRE
4.70 | 6 ratings
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STEVIE WONDER Fulfillingness' First Finale Album Cover Fulfillingness' First Finale
STEVIE WONDER
4.45 | 9 ratings
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CURTIS MAYFIELD Curtis/Live! Album Cover Curtis/Live!
CURTIS MAYFIELD
4.79 | 3 ratings
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STEVIE WONDER Innervisions Album Cover Innervisions
STEVIE WONDER
4.35 | 15 ratings
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ISAAC HAYES Hot Buttered Soul Album Cover Hot Buttered Soul
ISAAC HAYES
4.37 | 9 ratings
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EARTH WIND & FIRE All 'n' All Album Cover All 'n' All
EARTH WIND & FIRE
4.29 | 8 ratings
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STEVIE WONDER Talking Book Album Cover Talking Book
STEVIE WONDER
4.26 | 10 ratings
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SADE (HELEN FOLASADE ADU) Diamond Life Album Cover Diamond Life
SADE (HELEN FOLASADE ADU)
4.36 | 5 ratings
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EARTH WIND & FIRE That's the Way of the World Album Cover That's the Way of the World
EARTH WIND & FIRE
4.24 | 6 ratings
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This list is in progress since the site is new. We invite all logged in members to use the "quick rating" widget (stars bellow album covers) or post full reviews to increase the weight of your rating in the global average value (see FAQ for more details). Enjoy JMA!

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jazz related rnb Music Reviews

MICHAEL GREGORY JACKSON Heart & Center

Album · 1979 · Jazz Related RnB
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KTMcD
Rolling Stone reviewer Robert Palmer called 'Heart & Center' “Michael Gregory Jackson’s Future Funk". “...Jackson’s second album [Heart & Center] for Arista/Novus is unlike anything that’s been heard before. The rhythms, a varied lot, tend toward funk, and his songs and vocal style clearly relate to Earth Wind & Fire and Stevie Wonder. On the other hand, the melodies...incorporate Stravinsky-ish interval jumps that would terrify most pop vocalists, and the shimmering backdrop of voices, guitars and synthesizers, all overdubbed by Jackson, bring to mind the orchestral voicings of the late Duke Ellington. ...Jackson is blending a staggering variety of influences into a...coherent whole."

CHAKA KHAN Hello Happiness

EP · 2019 · Jazz Related RnB
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snobb
"Queen of Funk" and 80s disco diva Chaka Khan returns with "Hello Happiness", her first new material release in 12 years. Seven songs/28 minutes-long EP for a very first days received lot of (predominantly) negative critics in America and some (mostly positive) press in UK. Still it looks "Hello Happiness" has small chance to win another Grammy for Chaka.

Me personally I really love this music. Produced in UK by clubbing music guru Switch, new Chaka's music just blows your minds. American press probably expected Rufus revival or "I'm Every Woman" kind disco mega-hit, and attacked album as being "over-produced","with lots of electronics" and "terrible processed Chaka's vocals". They are right - there are no organic r'n'b vibes here at all. Made in a fashion of London clubbing music, it differs from Chaka's old songs as Madonna's "Music" differs "Like A Virgin". "Like A Virgin" got it respectable place in a museum of American pop-music, and "Music" sounds modern till now.

First album's single "Hello Happiness" has been released as catchy and funny video still prior to EP's release. Groovy funky sound of highest energy with strong voice and catchy melodies - and modern enough arrangements are characteristic for the rest album's songs as well. "Isn't That Enough?" even contains so fashionable (at least in London) reggae rhythms.

True, there are no hip-hop, angry social street-wise recitatives,heavy psychedelic electronics or popular Afro-beat on this album. That's why despite of mostly positive media it will hardly become hit in UK as well. It's a pity - one rare great modern r'n'b work with touch of European elegance is worth of really better destiny.

BENJAMIN HARRISON Nomad

Album · 2018 · Jazz Related RnB
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snobb
My head was full of West African rhythms,Caribbean vibes and spiritual jazz (I'm heavily on new London jazz last months)when I received debut album from Australian multi-instrumentalist Benjamin Harrison,"Nomad".

From very first seconds it sounded like an alien in my room - very familiar and very different at the same time. From rainy London's Nothing Hill I've been catapulted right to American South's highway with groovy music aired by local FM radio. Silky delux sound of well-executed songs didn't fit well with grey sky and dirty melting snow behind the window, but surprisingly for myself I stayed listening "Nomad" again and again day after day.

Benjamin Harrison who plays saxophones,keyboards,bass guitar and percussion on this album spend almost a decade as Cirque du Soleil bandleader touring Europe, Americas and Australia.He started recording his debut album still in 2016 with musicians from different countries he had worked with. Finally recorded material has been finalized in 2018 by renowned studio engineer Simon Cotsworth (Incognito, George Benson, Brand New Heavies, Level 42, Seal, Santana).

For remotely recorded album, the music here sounds surprisingly lively and extremely well mixed, it could be easily mistakenly taken as studio recorded one. Rooted in US smooth jazz tradition it is groovy and funky according to most current trends. Every instrument's part is precisely played and the arrangements are tasty.For fans of more rockish sound there are catchy electric guitar solos and sax soloing is filling more lyrical parts.

From music I heard during last few years "Nomad" music recalls probably Tower Of Power (not so funky though) and Incognito (I saw them both playing live though what means their sound was more raw in both cases). Usually I am listening to quite different music but this album caught me his very own way - I just really enjoyed the beauty of the music and sound.

VAN MORRISON Hymns To The Silence

Album · 1991 · Jazz Related RnB
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Matt
Released in 1991 being Van Morrison’s 21st studio album as well being a double containing quite a mix of styles covering Spiritual, Celtic, Narrative, Rock, Jazz and with a touch of Blues thrown in for good measure. Eclectic is one description but personally for me it’s just Van The Man doing what he has always done mixing it up but not just keeping various styles to predominately one album here we are getting them all. The Chieftains are back for two numbers, George Fame (Hammond organ , piano) , Terry Disley (piano), Candy Dulfer (alto sax), Dave Early (drums), Carol Kenyon, Katie Kissoon, (backing vocals) and the list goes on with two different bassists, flugelhorn, another pianist, accordion all employed for the various studio sessions recorded in London with Van himself inputting vocals, guitar, harmonica and alto sax within the album “Hymns To The Silence”

“Professional Jealousy’ gets it all going having a touch of resentment inserted into the lyrics over this mid tempo number with “I’m Not feeling It No Anymore” perhaps being a response for the prior number over a jaunty piano line throughout the song. Blues based “Ordinary Life” with Van on harmonica and a touch of Jazz follows with “Some Peace Of Mind” as the following “So Complicated” keeps that theme going.” Why Must I Always Explain” is often referred to the similarity with “Tupelo Honey” albeit at a slightly faster pace which seems to gel more with the song’s chorus. The Chieftains are the band for the Don Gibson classic country number “I Can’t Stop Loving You” with Van inserting guitar, Paddy Maloney with a Pipe solo and the two backing vocalists adding input for quite a nice take of the song. “Village Idiot” is one of the picks from the album which harkens back to “Crazy Face” from Van’s 1970 album “Van Morrison His Band And The Street Choir” with the odd one out being the topic but perhaps that is not the case at all for this lovely number. Spiritual is the base for the lovely “ See Me Through Part 11 (Just A Closer Walk With Thee)” containing a section of narrative with a later connection to his another narrative on the following disc “ On Hyndford St”. The last one is the slow Blues of “Take Me Back” with repetition a plenty within Van’s vocals in this stretched out delightful low key take.

The Spiritual comes to the fore within the second disc’s make up with the lively “By His Grace”, the Jazzed up “All Saints Day” following and the stunning title song “Hymns To The Silence”. Two narrations are included being “On Hyndford St” and “Pagan Streams” with the later being my pick. The Chieftains are back for another Spiritual “Be Thou My Vision” with the next “ Carrying A Torch” being the best ballad on the album with even Tom Jones using the number with three others contained within this album in his own 1991 release “Carrying A Torch”. The laid back “Green Mansions” and “Quality Street” follow with another nice ballad “It Must Be You” and the album finishing up with the love song “I Need Your Kind Of Loving”.

You won’t be rolling up the carpet or getting the dancing shoes on but this album is still one of Van Morrison’s best releases in the last thirty years containing a great mix of styles with plenty of great moments from Van’s vocals hitting the notes included. Needs a few plays and just have it on early morning, late at night or any quiet moments and just let it roll over and sing and dream along with all these beautiful hymns and narrations, to the silence.

PATTI LABELLE LaBelle ‎: Pressure Cookin'

Album · 1973 · Jazz Related RnB
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Matt
It was still a bit of struggle in the late sixties for Patti Labelle at this time to gain much acceptance after the limited success of Patti Labelle and The Blue Belles with one hit and a couple of minor ones, Girl Groups seemed to heading towards a dead-end and then Cindy Birdsong in 1967 from the original four girl line up decided to join the Supremes and to top it off Atlantic Records a year later dumped the band. Patti Labelle contacted Vicki Wickham from London, television producer and booking agent for a British R&B show who herself had always been a fan but realising the band’s current style was just old hat knew they needed to change. She contacted Chris Stamp co owner of Track Records who also was managing the Rock Band The Who during this current period and was taken by Vicki to see the band at The Apollo who signed them after being quite impressed with what he had heard and seen. First up the band’s name was changed to Labelle much to Patti Labelle’s angst with even more to come for her when it was decided that the old material was to be binned with more Rock and Contemporary material to becomes the band’s music. Still it wasn’t long before Patti Labelle realised they were heading in the right direction after the great receptions the band started to get from audiences with the new style as well as being the opening act for The Who, Sly And The Family Stone, Nina Simone and touring with Mandrill. Two albums were cut with Warner Records, “Gonna Take A Miracle” and “Moonshadow” with limited success and then the move came to Nina Simone’s label RCA where more Soul was injected to the band’s sound with Vicki Wickham producing in “Pressure Cookin’ “. The black soul-rock band Maxayn with a conga player were used to back the band on this record bringing forth a much tighter sound garnering this album great critical reviews but still limited success and although that may be so, this one was the main stepping stone to international fame which would follow for them when Epic Records and Allen Toussaint become involved with their next album “Nightbirds”

“Pressure Cookin’ “ the album’s title gets things going with a Funk backing for this politically charged number for this period in time with the Vietnam War, Black Equality and Watergate being the main drivers behind it with track two interlinking being a Medley comprising Thunder Clap Newman’s hit “Something In the Air” combined with Gil Scott Heron’s “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” and things are kept tight and funky with some great conga input backing “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” component with Labelle delivering it with more of a spoken word similar to Gil’s original take. “Sunshine (Woke Me Up This Morning)” is Funk injected with some great Wah Wah guitar under riding it all. It’s a ballad for “Can I Speak To You Before I Go To Hollywood” concerning old friends in the industry where once fame had reached them no longer seem available. “Mr Music Man” brings the Rock to the fore on the fast moving tune. “Goin’ On A Holiday” having one gorgeous Bass underpinning with a great hitting the notes vocal from Patti and the girls. “Let Me See You In The Light” is a delightful Soul based number with more of that great conga underneath. “Open Up Your Heart” and let me in and it sure does for this thumpin’ mid tempo Funk number with some great backing vocals for Patti’s lead. The lovely ballad “Last Dance” concludes proceedings with both ballads as good as each other that were incorporated within the album.

Really good album. If you loved “Nightbirds” the following and have not heard this one, you better get it!

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Artists with Jazz Related RnB release(s)

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