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Karl Denson- Dance Lesson #2
May 8, 2001
Original Release Date: 2001

Karl Denson/Saxes Flute, Melvin Sparks/Guitar, Charlie Hunter/Guitar, Leon Spencer Jr./Organ, Ron Levy/Organ & Wulitzer, Chris Wood/Bass, Zak Najor/Drums, Ej Rodriguez/Percussion, DJ Logic/Turntables

1. Dance Lesson #2 |
2. Like Like Dope
|
3. Rumpwinder
|
4. Flute Down
5. A.J. Bustah
6. A Shorter Path #1
7. A Shorter Path #2
8. I Want The Funk
9. Who Are You?
|

Review
See, didn't I tell you Karl Denson would make it big? Now he gets signed onto Blue Note Records. Not that it means anything, it only means Denson's funky sounds can be distributed to a wider audience. That's what Blue Note does. Remember it made St. Germain big this year? Denson's success may not be compared to St. Germain as of now, but we have yet to see the results.

I have a few things to say about this album. First, this is Denson's first commercial album, away from the influence Greyboy Allstars and his Tiny Universe. No doubt Denson is a fabulous musician, but everytime he plays with Tiny Universe on stage, he doesn't show his full flair. I have seen them twice on stage and both times I was disappointed. This album shows that Denson may be a better studio artist than a live one, where he takes advantage of all his strong suits.

Second, this album features an allstar cast, stemming from Melvin Sparks, a legendary guitarist who virtually appears on every great funk album ever made, to Chris Wood, who is of Medeski Martin & Wood's fame, taking care of the major bass role here. It's good to have these talented ones on board. Also featuring Greyboy Allstars' drummer Zak Najor and Blue Note guitarist Charlie Hunter. Surprisingly, DJ Logic even sounds good on this album!! I usually don't dig DJ Logic's stuff because it is too formulaic. But his formula works here with Denson's studio stunts. DJ Logic sounds good for the first time in his career.

Finally, this album should be a three part series in the Blue Note direction after St. Germain's and Soulive's immense worldwide success. This album should also be added to the must-listen list other than Cachaito and Philadelphia Experiment. This reminds me of Cachaito because they both use a DJ, making funky sounds more funky. Make sure to keep you feet tapping when listen to Denson's resurgence of funk!

Extended Listening

-Greyboy Allstars- West Coast Boogaloo
-St. Germain- Tourist

-Orlando Cachaito Lopez- Cachaito



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