From LIVE AT BLUE NOTE TOKIO AND OSAKA BLUE NOTE
Written by David Foster & Kenny Loggins
Four Of A Kind was a Japanese jazz/fusion quartet that released a couple of solid records at the dawn of the new millennium. The group included noted saxophonist Masato Honda, Satoru Shionoya on piano and keyboards who was also a member of the pop/jazz duo Salt & Sugar, drummer Takashi Numazawa and bass player Tomohito Aoki (1957-2006).
Four Of A Kind debuted in 2002 with a self-titled cd. Four Of A Kind presented a number of originals written by the group members. The themes were extremely interesting for jazz/fusion lovers and were delivered with impressive performances by the virtuoso quartet.
Later that same year, Four Of A Kind released Live At Blue Note Tokio And Osaka Blue Note. This was a compilation cd from the group’s live performances at those clubs. It presented versions of tracks from their debut album plus a couple of covers. One such cover was a refined version of the Marvin Gaye (1939-1984) classic, “What’s Going On,” which was included on Four Of A Kind. The second cover was a surprising jazz reworking of “I Would Do Anything.”
Co-written by David Foster and Kenny Loggins, “I Would Do Anything” was originally part of Loggins’ 1989 Leap Of Faith cd. It’s always a pleasure to find a Foster gem that finds new life in a jazz setting. This instrumental take on “I Would Do Anything” was no exception. The pop feel of the tune was still intact, but the jazzy mood takes the melody to another dimension. All four musicians totally shine with their collective work and beautiful solos.
In 2004, Four Of A Kind released their sophomore cd titled 2. It was another great collection of original jazz/fusion instrumentals that included a smooth, classy cover of Stevie Wonder’s “Summer Soft.”
For those interested, a review of Loggins’ “I Would Do Anything” can be read in the archives.
- Piano & Keyboards: Satoru Shionoya
- Drums: Takashi Numazawa
- Electric & Fretless Bass: Tomohito Aoki
- Alto Saxophone: Masato Honda