‘Heart To Heart’ is the latest album from acclaimed smooth jazz guitar man NORMAN BROWN. He says of his new music: “I wrote and recorded ‘Heart To Heart’ as a message to my fellow Beings to remember that the essential quality of our nature was made divine, as one race, governed by one world. We must abandon the perception that we are made to exist independently, therefore, not unified, divided by selfishness, creating greed to fulfil our quest for survival”. Now that might make you think that the 11 tracker is somehow deep and meaningful, complex even. On the contrary, the music Brown crafts here (aided and abetted by sidemen like guitarists Peter White and Paul Brown, keyboardists Jeff Lorberand Chris “Big Dog” Davis and saxophonist David Mann) is simple and sweet, easily accessible and ticks all the boxes for a classic guitar led smooth jazz album.

Brown sets out his stall right from the start with the classy strains of ‘Heading Wes’ – an obvious and clearly heartfelt tribute to the doyen of jazz guitarists – Wes Montgomery. There’s more of the same vibes on cuts like ‘Just Groovin’’ while for a real lift try the sprightly ‘Unconditional’. Amongst the more tranquil cuts are ‘Brighter My Light Shines’ and ‘I Miss Your Groove’. Highlight is the lovely ‘She’s Mine’ – a sort of mellow Tower of Power sound sans vocals. Here Brown’s guitar sparkles confirming what recent jazz polls have shown… he’s up there with some of the very best.

Norman Brown’s ‘Heart To Heart’ is out on August 7th on Shanachie Records.