Braun, Rick - Body and Soul

Year of Release: 1997
Label: Mesa/Bluemoon
Catalog Number: 2-92743
Format: CD
Total Time: 46:04:00

While this is far from being a progressive release, as it falls squarely in the smooth jazz category, Rick Braun's Body and Soul is a very fine album nonetheless. From the beginning track, "Notorious," on, Braun's tone on both trumpet and flugelhorn is warm and seductive.

To most progressive music fans, this might seem the anthesis of what progressive is all about - this being a processed, packaged sound, all smooth and rounded. But there is such a depth of feeling in Braun's playing that it really should win over all but the stubbornest listeners.

A couple of the tracks break somewhat from the so called "smooth jazz" sound - track three, "Slick," includes Braun's signature sound over a what can be only described as light hip hop backing track. And, track five, "Long Tall Judy", is a bouncy, playful tune with Jeff Golub on guitar.

In some ways the title track, the oft recorded classic (which appears seven tracks in), gets lost. Pleasant as it is, Braun's originals seem more in focus. Included here, I'm sure for personal reasons, including wanting to put his own interpretation on the music.

While there have been vocal tracks on Braun's previous albums (Night Walk and Beat Street at least; I've not heard his first, Intimate Secrets), this is the first time Braun handles the vocals, doing so on "Love Will Find A Way." His vocals are soft and gentle, and not too bad at all. The same feeling in his playing is evident in his voice, which shouldn't be too suprising.

All in all, regardless of the category this falls into, this is a terrific album.

Notorious (4:32) / Missing In Venice (4:17) / Slick (4:22) / Chelsea (3:46) / Long Tall Judy (4:41) / Dark Eyes (4:32) / Body And Soul (4:32) / Angel (4:13) / Love Will Find A Way (4:13) / Coolsville (4:50) / Hymn For Her (4:06)

Rick Braun - trumpet, flugelhorn, keyboards, keyboard bass, drum programming, and vocals
Leon Bisquera, Curtis Brengle, Mike Egizi, and Chuck Kentis - keyboards and programming
Paul Brown - additional programming
Boney James - saxophone
Mark Antonie, Vinnie D'Onofrio, Jeff Golub, and Chris Standring - guitars
Dave Karasony, Dave Palmer - drums
Paul Spencer Denman, Cliff Hugo - bass

Intimate Secrets
Night Walk (1994)
Beat Street (1995)
Body and Soul (1997)
Full Stride (1998)
Kisses In The Rain (2001)
Esperanto (2003)

Genre: Other

Origin US

Added: May 1st 1998
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Artist website:
Hits: 1064
Language: english


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