and composer Roger Odell is founder and longtime member of the
famous British group Shakatak. Like the other musicians of the
group Roger has established his own solo projects. Roger calls it
In late 1999/2000 Roger recorded the first album entitled Blue
Window. One can call it a family project, because his son Jamie
played on keys, his wife Larraine and Jacqui Hicks were the
featured vocalists, his daughter Maxine sang background. On
the second album Intrigue (2015) performed beside Roger,
Larraine, Jacqui, Jamie and in addition Mornington Lockett on
saxes and Keith Winter on guitar.
Now Roger returns with the third solo project The Long Drive
Home (2019). The cast is the same as on the second album.
Bass guitarist Simon Goulding from the Snake Davis Band joins the
formation. Guest appearances by vocalist Liane Carroll, trumpet
and flugelhorn player Paul Higgs and percussionist Snowboy round
off the whole thing.
The music of Beatifik has taken a phenomenal development, it is
still similar to that of Shakatak, but it nevertheless treads new
musical paths. The starting song Disguised featuring
vocalist Jacqui Hicks thematically revolves around a dark night
event in which two individuals meet. Jamie Odell's synth bass and
keyboard solo set strong modern accents.
When Your World Was Mine is a melancholic love ballad in
which the protagonist reflects on a lost relationship. Jacqui
Hicks with her lovely tremolo is sensitively accompanied by Keith
Winter on guitar. The Latin tinged Slaves To the Beat
describes people who lose themselves in rhythm and forget the
worries of everyday life.
With the singer, on Surrender also the mood changes.
Lorraine, Roger's wife, brings the message with a lot of
authenticity. Topically, the song circles around a woman who lives
restlessly through the night, not knowing what her relationship is
like. Mornington Lockett refines the singing with his lively
saxophone. Cruise Control delves in synth harmonies with
variants of keyboard sounds.
Celebrate is a song about two lovers who have known each
other for a long time but finally found each other and enjoy their
fortune. According to the liner notes, the song leans
stylistically on Stevie's Living For The City and Sly's
Dance To The Music. Danza Del Diablos is located as
the title indicates in Latin Jazz. The fast rhythm attracts
the virtuosity of all participating musicians, particularly Simon, Mornington
Blue Mood is the description of a melancholic ambiance,
which is reflected especially in the cold season by the bluish
shimmer. Paul Higgs on muted trumpet and Mornington Locket on
tenor sax with their subdued playing help to ensure that the mood
credibly reaches the listener.
Lazy Afternoon is a song by composer Jerome Moross and
writer John Treville Latouche for the musical Golden Apple
(1954). The song became popular by Barbara Streisand's cover
(1975). I's one of Roger Odell's favorite songs and he had precise
ideas about how the song should be done. Jamie Odell's orchestral
string introduction has pleasantly surprised him in its perfection
and the smoky voice of his wife Lorraine does the rest.
Estepona Sunrise is a musical impression of the
picturesque city at the Costa del Sol. Keith Winter flawlessly
captures the Spanish character of this vibrant city with his
guitar, while Snowboy delivers the matching rhythmic frame on his
cojon. On Island Hoppin' Roger follows his affinity for
rhythm. Snowboy lives the beat on congas, wooden sticks, cow bells
and other rhythm devices he can get his hands on. The Caribbean
dream becomes reality here.
The Long Drive Home is presented by Liane Carroll, a
recognized vocal interpreter with the right jazzy timbre and
soulful empathy. The ideal line-up for an atmospheric finale.
Sometimes it's time to give voice to your own creations. Roger
Odell has got three of theirs making his music sound and so one
joins the other. The Long Drive Home is a masterpiece
with good reason.
Buy the album in all stores
Title: The Long
Genre: Smooth Jazz
Label: Secret Records
1 Disguised 4:57
2 When Your World Was Mine 4:50
Slaves To the Beat 5:14
4 Surrender 3:41
6 Celebrate 4:33
7 Danza Del Diablos 5:36
8 Blue Mood 5:08
9 Lazy Afternoon 6:20
11 Island Hoppin' 5:36
12 The Long Drive
The Blue Window