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Patrick Yandall – 10 South Riverside

Mar. 1, 2018

One of the most prolific, talented, and –in my opinion – somewhat unheralded guitarists in this jazz/smooth jazz genre is long-time artist Patrick Yandall. His smooth, textured sound and delivery have been recognized and appreciated enough for him to be featured in any all-star lineup of contemporary jazz artists anywhere. Yet, that distinction is not often bestowed upon him, despite having now cranked out 21 quality-filled albums and having received Grammy consideration in the “Contemporary Instrumental” category for his previous two releases. His music was once regularly featured on the former Weather Channel, as well.

Here with 10 South Riverside, yet another gem (this cat can crank them out with blinding speed – meaning his library of unreleased material must be massive), the cool, unassuming masterfully skilled guitarist offers 14 more tracks, 13 originals and a magnificent cover of George Benson’s “Breezin’.” It’s all as colorful and charismatic as anything he’s ever produced. Personally, I feel that, as an indie artist, his longstanding productivity, creativity, and awesome style speak volumes and should serve as solid inspiration for all indie artists with bonafide skill and conviction that perseverance certainly has its merits.

10 South Riverside even has a great nod to the late Chuck Loeb called “Free Flight,” a powerful piece that would certainly make Chuck proud. Other notable tracks include the slick and silky mid-tempo “Thumbs Up,” its melody singing a carefree and happy song; the lead track “Mister Bean,” a poppin’ up-tempo tune that intentionally takes on a Blackbyrds-like feel; the soft, swaying “Sunset in Monroe” – a reference to a Michigan city; and the snappy title track, among many others – including a funky, soulful, mid-tempo nod to King James Brown with “Jump Back James” as his finale. Simply 24-carat stuff.

Yandall makes no compromises on any of his releases in terms of quality, and his level of commitment to his love of this music is firmly unquestionable. If you’ve not yet treated yourself to this guitar master’s musical prowess, you’re truly cheating yourself. This release is as good a place to start familiarizing yourself as any. – Ronald Jackson