Personnel includes: Jeff Lorber (arranger, piano, Wurlitzer piano, Fender Rhodes piano, Hammond B-3 organ, keyboards, Mini-Moog synthesizer, electric bass, percussion, programming); Eric Benet, Janis Siegel (vocals); Gary Meek (soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone, flute); Dave Koz (soprano saxophone); Steve Cole (tenor saxophone); Dan Higgins (saxophone, flute); Jerry Hey (trumpet); Bill Reichenbach (trombone); Bruce Hornsby (piano); Alec Milstein (synthesizer, percussion); Marlon McClain (electric guitar); Michael Landau, Ray Fuller, Paul Jackson, Jr., Melvin "Wah "Wah Watson, Stuart Wylen, Tony Maiden (guitar); Lee Ritenour (nylon string guitar); Nate Phillips (electric bass); John Robinson (drums); Paulinho Da Costa (congas, shaker, percussion).
Producers: Jeff Lorber, Steve Dubin, Marlon McClain, Mickey Petralia.
Compilation producers: Jeff Lorber, Bryan Koniarz.
Principally recorded at JHL Studios, Palisades, California between 1993 & 2001. Includes liner notes by Robbie Vincent.
Personnel: Jeff Lorber (piano, electric piano, Fender Rhodes piano, Wurlitzer organ, keyboards, synthesizer, mini-Moog synthesizer, electric bass, percussion, percussion programming); Alec Milstein (vocals, keyboards, bass synthesizer, electric bass, percussion); Eric Benét (vocals, background vocals); Janis Siegel (vocals); Michael Landau (guitar, electric guitar, nylon-string guitar); Stuart Wylen (guitar, electric guitar); Paul Jackson, Jr. , Tony Maiden, Ray Fuller (guitar); Marlon McClain (electric guitar, steel guitar); Lee Ritenour (nylon-string guitar); Dan Higgins (flute, saxophone); Gary Meek (flute, soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone); Dave Koz (soprano saxophone); Art Porter (alto saxophone); Steve Cole (tenor saxophone); Jerry Hey (trumpet); William Frank "Bill" Reichenbach Jr. (trombone); Bruce Hornsby (piano); Joey Altruda (acoustic bass); Nate Phillips (electric bass); John "J.R." Robinson (drums); Paulinho Da Costa (congas, castanets, shaker, percussion); Curt Bisquera (hi-hat, drum programming); Lenny Castro (percussion); Mickey Petralia (percussion programming); Jeff Pescetto (background vocals).
Recording information: JHL SOund, Pacific Palisades, CA (1993-2001); Los Angeles, CA (1993-2001).
Photographers: David Moore; Silvia Otte; Caroline Greyshock.
Arrangers: Jeff Lorber; Alec Milstein; Steve Dubin.
Unlike 2000's Definitive Collection, the inappropriately titled The Very Best of Jeff Lorber only focuses on his work since 1993. This is a shame, because despite the quality of his playing, his earliest albums display a thoughtful take on fusion that emphasized the rock elements more than jazz. In the '90s, Lorber's funky smooth jazz doesn't have the same groundbreaking feel or youthful energy that he was so good at creating. His music can still be a lush, powerful force (just check out "Yellowstone" for proof), but it can suffer from an indistinct feel that suggests a hundred other players. Still, the small experimental touches (such as the whispered vocals in "Punta del Este") can still shake up his material, making this an above-average collection that doesn't begin to touch the breadth of its subject's catalog. ~ Bradley Torreano
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