Jun 082014
 

from YESTERDAY’S DREAMS
written by Alphonso Johnson, Philip Bailey& Pat Walker

Virtuoso musician Alphonso Johnson is one of the modern legends of bass guitar. His eclectic talent, superior technique and fantastic groove is appreciated worldwide by jazz, rock and r&b audiences. During the course of his long and remarkable career, Johnson has played alongside people like Phil Collins, Michael Jackson, Pat Metheny, Pino Daniele, Bob Weir of The Grateful Dead, George Duke, Gov’t Mule and Chuck Mangione.

He was also a member of rock legends Santana and seminal jazz/rock masters The Weather Report. In the second half of the seventies, right after his very fortunate stint with The Weather Report, Johnson signed a three record deal with Epic Records.

The first two albums, “Moonshadows” and “Yesterday’s Dreams,” were solid jazz/funk affairs produced by Skip Drinkwater. Drinkwater was a hot name in the fusion circle and worked with Lee Ritenour, Norman Connors and others. Those two albums included some of the most revered names in jazz/fusion including the aforementioned Ritenour, Patrice Rushen, Narada Michael Walden, Ndugu Chancler, Chuck Findley and Grover Washington, Jr. “Yesterday’s Dreams” also features a young David Foster playing organ on the opening track and the lead single, “Love’s The Way I Feel ‘Bout Cha.” That song is an infectious funk jam co-written by Johnson with Philip Bailey of Earth, Wind & Fire fame. Bailey also sings on “Love’s The Way I Feel ‘Bout Cha” with the fantastic Dianne Reeves. Another great touch on the track was added with Washington ‘s trademark tenor sax solo, Patrice Rushen on the electric piano, a very young Sheila Escovedo hot on the congas and Foster, as previously mentioned, playing the organ. “Yesterday’s Dreams” marked the first appearance on a record by the now famous Sheila E. This album is a good example of the American jazz/funk sounds of the seventies with its influences ranging from EWF’s funk to Ritenour’s fusion. Although it does not include a memorable composition, “Yesterday’s Dreams” was a good vehicle to appreciate Johnson’s superior artistry and the fantastic skills of his all-star supporting players.


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Vocals: Dianne Reeves & Philip Bailey
Bass & Vocals: Alphonso Johnson
Guitar: Lee Ritenour
Electric Piano: Patrice Rushen
Drums: Mike Clark
Congas: Sheila Escovedo
Organ: David Foster
Tenor Saxophone: Grover Washington, Jr.
Synthesizers: Ian Underwood

Produced by Skip Drinkwater


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