Liquid Spirit - Gregory Porter

from the album Liquid Spirit (2013)

Gregory Porter is a jazz musician from Southern California.  He is about to release his third album, the first on the famed Blue Note label.  The record is titled Liquid Spirit.

The first thing you notice about Gregory Porter is his voice.  There are few human beings who can sing like him.  I find myself listening to his albums in their entirety so I can feel every note.  Each tune's variation in vibe makes me appreciate him all the more.  His voice is crazy good.

The second thing you notice about Gregory Porter is his music.  Although this guy could be an R&B superstar, he keeps his roots in jazz.  I'm glad, because his voice deserves the only highest form of musical accompaniment.  I also dig his compositions and arrangements.  They unleash raw beauty.

For example, on the song Liquid Spirit, the vocals jump right into the first measure, supported by handclaps and an upright bass.  Soon follow horns and a piano track that really jumps out.  The music is arranged so you hear every sound.  The tone of every instrument - even the handclaps - is amazing.  The dynamics lift, then settle, only to lift again.  It is all very well conceived.

The third thing you notice about Gregory Porter is the rich foundation his music creates for electronic artists.  Check out the song 1960 What? (Opolopo Kick & Bass Rerub) off of Opolopo's 2011 album Mutants.  This is the record that first introduced me to Gregory Porter.  It is 8 1/2 minutes jazz, beats, and Mr. Porter singing the line "The Motor City's Burning."  Superb.

Click Here to listen to Liquid Spirit on SoundCloud.

Click Here to watch a You Tube promo for his new album.  It gives you great insight into the artist and includes a discussion with Don Was.