WELCOME TO THE SMOOTH JAZZ RIDE! * WELCOME TO THE SMOOTH JAZZ RIDE! * WELCOME TO THE SMOOTH JAZZ RIDE!

Nate White – Up Close

Oct. 31, 2018

Up Close, this third album from bassist Nate White, is truly a jazz/funk/soul aficionado’s dream. It’s an album full of thick, highly charged, well-produced grooves presented with the confidence and sass of one who knows this musical terrain well.

In case the name doesn’t ring a bell with you, White has shared the stage with many well-known, well-regarded  artists, including The Godfather of Neo-Soul Roy Ayers (who was instrumental in placing White on the musical map), Michael Henderson, the jazz quartet Gratitude, George Johnson of the Brothers Johnson, Reggie Calloway (former leader of Midnight Star), Chuck Loeb, Jeff Lorber, Everette Harp, Euge Grove, Phil Perry, Aubrey Logan, Richard Elliot, Rick Braun, Gerald Albright, and the GRAMMY®-nominated, platinum-selling sax giant Dave Koz. With a resume like that, it’s no wonder why the sound you’ll hear on this project is so polished, refined, and yet often nitty-gritty-dirty with that funk persona.

I personally was held captive, intrigued by the presence of this music, from track one “Kupenda” (“love” in Swahili). Things just continued to get better and richer as I listened further to catchy tracks like “Zombie,” “Sugarland,” “Ducie’s Groove,” and “Sweet Summer Nights” among others. It’s certainly no overstatement to say that the entire album has that soulful jazz/funk appeal, and it’s no surprise that Roy Ayers would find this cat worthy of a spotlight all his own.

White plays with much authority as he hammers home lead bass runs that stick to you like glue. Add to that some seriously noteworthy writing skills, and you’ve got one well-packaged, hard-to-resist piece of work here. Simply put, get this one. – Ronald Jackson