360 Urban Groove
Take your parents’ jazz, add talk about a threesome, Coolio, and sexy saxophonist Jimmy Sommers, and you’ve got 360 Urban Groove. The second project from jazz fan Sommers, it’s a total love album and from one song to the next, it’s nothing but class. If hip-hop, jazz, and Sade had a child, this album would be the soundtrack. Ginuwine stirs it up on the third track, “Let’s Go Party,” proving that this is definitely not your parents’ jazz. It’s a weak attempt at a Top 40, but it’s somehow still very highbrow, very classy. Who ever thought you could clean up Coolio, but somehow Sommers has managed to scrape some of the grime off of his reputation and his cameo on “Lowdown” leaves him smelling like, well, a rather clean rapper. Most of 360 Urban Groove makes one think of hipsters strolling to late dinner parties, what expensive boutique stores play to get you in the mood to drop way too much cash on things you’ll never use, or lighting a fire with your special someone, in more ways then one (for which the appropriate song would be “Lovin’ You,” featuring Sparkle). It’s also a great disc to kick back with and polish off a day; as a fan of my parents’ jazz, this is a favorable attempt to recapture the true class of jazz music. Meet Jimmy Sommers; Kenny G, only younger, actually good looking, not releasing a Christmas Album, and oh yeah, he doesn’t have that scary hair thing going on either. Ick. Regardless, 360 Urban Groove is a rock solid good CD. Be the first person you know to experience the full-on coolness only well played jazz can bring to your life.