JOEY SOMMERVILLE; The Get Down Club (Jay Vox)

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Joey Sommerville is a smooth jazz trumpeter whose melodious style has won him gigs with people like Wayman Tisdale, Jeff Lorber, Najee, Phil Perry, Bob Baldwin and Marion Meadows. He does, though, record in his own right and on this new ten tracker he enlists some of his erstwhile musical employers and between them they create a solid if unadventurous smooth jazz album. The tone is set by the opening track – ‘Make The Spot Hot’. It rides a great modern soul groove and features occasional vocals that do little more than repeat the song’s title. ‘Swag’ offers more of the same… if a little mellower while ‘Solomon’s Throne’ is slower and a tad bumpy.

Most smooth jazz sets boast some Latin moments … and here Sommerville offers two bright, samba school romps. ‘Con Sabor’ – with the odd vocal moment, repeating the title – and ‘Just Let Go’ which has a full, Al Jarreau style vocal from Alex Latimore. The album’s other big vocal track is the quiet storm ballad, ‘Love In Stereo’. Here the singer’s Xavier Lewis and he makes the cut the set’s most soulful moment. There’s a number of other “slowies” on the album – ‘I’m Home’ being the best, with Bob Baldwin doing his best to sound like Bob James. On the closing ‘Primitive Cool’, Jeff Lorber attempts the same – with equal success.

Ultimately, ‘The Get Down Club’ is an easy-listening experience… but there’s nothing wrong with that. The genre has legions of dedicated fans and they can learn more @

(BB) 3/5