Steve Harvey is a multi-talented man, and a gentleman to boot. His talents, in my opinion, are seriously undervalued by many, and his sturdy efforts all under his own steam only add authority to this man’s credibility, persona and aura. This new effort is a lot more grittier, funky and even rockier in places, although more in a Rufus mode than anything else. I know some who did not find this work as appealing as his previous material, and to be honest I can see where they come from, even though I do not share the same strong point of view.
For me, this is another chapter in the evolution of Steve Harvey, and offers us some pointers into where this man is headed. More important about a man, so some say, is the company he keeps. Well, going by the list of soulful folks attached to this project, this says a lot about him, and it’s all positive. OK, not every track is 100% to my taste, but most of it is, and it goes without saying that this is a mandatory purchase for anyone interested in quality, real soul music. Steve keeps it real with the likes of Ledisi, K.K., Rahsaan Pattersonand N’Dambi and throws more real instrumentation into the mix than many do today, therefore creating a heady infusion of raw playing, raw talent and real, gritty soul music.
Ledisi kicks off with a superb 70s styled groove, much in the vein of The Temptations "’Round Here" and boy does this Lady shine. What a talent we have with Ledisi! She’s a gem. K.K. is a new name to me, and his smooth Gospel driven delivery perfectly complements the smooth groove. Stylistically he is a mix of Calvin Richardson / Jo-Jo Hailey with the phrasing of Parkes Stewart. Very nice indeed. Bobby Watson adds some brilliant guitar work too, and the Hammond Organ, flute and solid drumming create a perfect atmosphere befitting a summer5 afternoon.
A hero in many people’s eyes is Rahsaan Patterson. His unique vocal style fits Steve’s funky stye perfectly and "That’s The Way" is equally as good as anything on his last set for UK label, Dome. Steve and Donnie are no strangers to each other, and if you loved his 2003 set for Giant Step / Motown, then you will also appreciate the quirky and retro "Keep My Name Out Of Your Mouth" which follows on organically from this album. Here’s to his new album!
My personal favourite is the SUPERB "Troubled Times" by Linn Segolson, who is a new name to me. This is a dreamy, unhurried masterpiece – the kind of groove that Kindred SHOULD be doing now. Lynn’s stylish, smooth and sexy performance atop the summery groove is a real first-past-the-post effort. Gold medals all round for this. Many are highlighting "Shake It Off" as a cream track, and I certainly don’t disagree with this prognosis. I have been interested in many lauding Pretty Terry as a new name to look out for. As soon as I heard him sing I knew this was, in fact, no-one new to us seasoned ears at all. It is – as Steve himself confirmed with me – Terry Stanton from the Dazz Band. I love this guy’s voice and immediately spotted it. This is a very welcome collaboration, and Terry does appear to be striking out on his own as his recent collaboration with Jeff Lorber’s Shades Of Soul testifies. A memorable track and a memorable performance. It's one of those grooves which will stick in your head and refuse to budge. In truth, the last thing you can do is "shake it off"!
There’s a pretty duet with N’Dambi and Keite Young at the sunset of the CD, and rates highly against their individual songs on the set. It is sexy, close-knit and irresistible. I cannot recommend this set enough. Here’s looking forward to Volume 2!
Ledisi, Frank McComb, Brigette, Donnie,Kindred, N'Dambi and Rahsaan Patterson are just a few of the artists who have turned to composer, musician and producer Steve 'The Scotsman' Harvey in recent years. When producing his unique style of classic soul and funk, he involves the cream of LA's musicians, central to these being bobby Watson (bass) and Jimi Macon (guitar).In
the summer of 2004 Steve, with brand new ones showcased here for the first time. From Scotland, Steve produced hits in the UK on acts inc. Total contrast before moving to Malibu, California where more recently his sound landed him work producing the temptations for Motown. His last work for Expansion was the Brigette album Starlite Lounge. 2006.
You'll probably remember Steve Harvey from the early eighties when he made two 12 inch singles entitled "Tonight" and "Something Special", both released on London Records. He also produced tracks for the debut albums of both Total Contrast and Five Star. Steve got little sleep during the late eighties and nineties! Behind the scenes he worked with other great artists like Impromp2, George Duke, Jeff Lorber, Gary Brown, Gerald Albright and many more. He wrote six of the tracks on the last two Temptations albums 'Legacy' and 'Reflections' both of which he produced. -
A sublime set of contemporary soul -- headed up by drummer/producer Steve Harvey, and featuring vocals by a host of great guests who include Donnie, Ledisi, N'Dambi, Rahsaan Patterson, KK, and others! Steve's been kicking things up strongly on the west coast for a number of years -- lending his talents in the studio to some great soul projects for artists young and old, and always bringing a deeply soulful vibe to the table -- one that mixes old school roots with the best modes of the current Neo Soul scene, a sound that's especially great because Harvey's always in-the-pocket with some snapping acoustic percussion -- not the overdone flurry of beats! This set is Steve's first as a "leader" -- a really great little record that showcases the soulful mode he's building with his Everyday People group -- a unified groove at the bottom that's freshened up nicely by the shifting singers in the set! Titles include "I Can't Let You Go", "Where Has The Love Gone", "That's The Way", "Stay With Me", "Keep My Name Out Your Mouth", "I Can't Leave You Alone", "Shake It Off", and "If We Were Alone".