Elliot Levine

Elliot Levine has been playing in the Baltimore/Washington area for over
15 years.
He worked with Wilson Pickett, and performed at many clubs and
festivals, including Blues Alley and the St. Croix Jazz Festival. He
has also opened for Brian McKnight and Freddy Jackson and performed with
members of Heatwave (Boogie Nights and Always and Forever).

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How do you find a precious jewel in the Smooth Jazz genre? You can try your search-engines and search a lot of time or you simply go to www.mp3.com, where you find a huge amount of musical talents. Mp3.com is a real collection of gems. Elliot Levine is not only an "extraordinary composer/keyboardist" (http://www.jazzreview.com/pmrevs20.html),
but also an active member at mp3.com (

 Elliot began his musical interest at the age of four. Point of interest was the piano in the parent's house. But he got deeper involved in music not before high school time. His musical career is similiar to other artists. He played in a band Jazz, Rock and Fusion. Turning-point was undoubtly his contact with Greg Hatza, under who he studied keyboard play and improve his skills. But building up a music-career ain't easy going. Elliot writes the majority of the pieces, produces, records and engineers the whole albums helping Bill Pratt at his studios. Beyond the creation he still shops and promotes his cds himself. What a lot of legwork!  

Elliot put up all this efforts, because he loves the music: 
"I want to reach people with my music. It is satisfying to write, perform and record your own material, and that's is what I 'm doing now. It's a real rush to have something out, let me tell ya!"

His second cd Urban Grooves shows up Elliot's musical mastership and  precision. Bach-A-Lism starts with a surprising classical quotation of a bachian prelude transfering to a free and easy going Smooth Jazz piano play in a wonderful contrast to the stringent structure of the historical fuge.

Tender love is a title, which is often used in music history (http://allmusic.com/cg/x.dll?UID=12:27:12|PM&p=amg&sql=HTENDER|LOVE).
Elliot manages to give this piece of Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, one of the most succesful production team in modern R&B, a new glance. My hidden love are steel drums and the magic of this instrument played by the wizzard Ken "Professor" Philmore, adjusts this tune an emotional and romantic touch till the last note. 

The Cat is a cover-version  of Lalo Schifrin's piece, released on Once a Thief and Other Film Themes in 1965. Elliot is a cat-friend (Tilley Records is named after his cat). A perfect organ play in the old style of Rock'n Roll.

Funky dreams and keyboard accords introduce into the title pieces Urban Groove. I love these urban grooving tunes often heared but always catchy. Kevin Powe put a little edge to the soft but accurate piano play of Elliot.

Brad Johnson's heavy funky bass and Johnny Long's ingratiating Sax are a perfect platform for Elliot's next organistic La Groove. A masterful breathtaking organ solo.

If only you knew, former sung by Patti Labelle, slow down the uptempo. Elliot cannot resist to play a piano solo on this slow tune. But he even masters the soft tones. Fortissimo and piano in one piece.

St. Croix is another wonderful example of Elliot's ambivalence.

Second light is dominated by Isaac Parham's smooth saxophon with some nice interludes of Elliot's paino and Powe's guitar.

An exellent cover-version of  Marvin Gaye's Let's Get It On organized anew Elliot, obviously a reminiscence of earlier days of Elliot's youth.

Heatwave's Always And Forever is another slow and emotional organ piece. Let's dream of the glorious musical past.

As is the following uptempo-beat version of Stevie Wonder former hit. Pam Frasier's beautiful vocals are a dignified substitute for Stevie's voice. 

Kind of Miles is a memorial to the great Miles Davis. This Funk/Jazz Fusion is pushed by Avon Lucas picked deep bass.

This album is often reviewed by enthusiastic writers like Morrice and Boehi. The outstanding quality deserves another review. I can verify the high rating. Spend a little of your time to listen to this excellent Smooth Jazz album.