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Althea Rene — Flawsome

Aug. 30, 2019

With the launch of her eighth album, soul-jazz flautist Althea Rene shows not only her staying power, tenacity, and appeal, but her depth of feel as a c-jazz artist.

This charming release from a charmer of a musician whose bio is as impressive as her skill (she was once a deputy sheriff in Texas and counts Jethro Tull flautist/frontman Ian Anderson, Yusef Lateef, Hubert Laws, and her dad Dezie McCullers of the famed Motown Funk Brothers among her chief influences) is truly a pleasure to behold.

This latest release, Flawsome, is more of that saucy, full-bodied c-jazz flavor for which she has become so well-known. It floats, struts, saunters, and dances its way into your groove lane effortlessly with catchy hooks and melodies found on such tracks as the spirited lead number “Inner Circle,” her silky version of the late Michael Jackson’s “Rock With You,” the very sexy and melodic “Passion,” a poppin’ dancer called “Jump to It” written by the album’s co-producer and all-around noted keyboardist/programmer/composer Chris “Big Dog” Davis. Then, there’s the swaying, rhythmic title track and more.

Made of the stuff that serves as this genre’s oxygen, Althea Rene’s obvious intention is to do her level best to keep the music on track and far away from obscurity. This album is on track to do just that. Sit down with it, make an evening of it, make an experience of it. In a word, quality. — Ronald Jackson