Get this crazy baby off my head!


Neil Larsen & Orbit Feat. Robben Ford

Neil Larsen & Orbit Feat. Robben Ford - 2007 - Straight Ahead

Neil Larsen is, or course, a wonderful keyboard player, but the guitarist in the all-star band here is Robben Ford. And, the recording is from Straight Ahead, which makes it a live-to-2-track recording. So, we have a lot of things here that make this a special record. First, let s talk about the compositions. All 12 tracks are memorable for various reasons and the band, besides Larsen and Ford, includes Jimmy Haslip on bass, Tom Brechtlein on drums, Gary Meek on saxophone, and Lee Thornburg on trumpet. It s a formidable line-up and it works well. For our purposes, let s talk guitar. Most of this is some form of fusion, and Ford s in fine form. Whether it s a percolating funk like the title cut which finds Robben playing an amazingly cool jazz solo, the lovely slow jazz shuffle C Note which plays to Robben s bluesy strengths, or the organ trio sound of Red Desert , which lets Robben echo Wes Montgomery, he s always on. It s hard in this day and age to find a player whose tone and choice of notes always seem perfect. This live setting also tends to favor Ford, who always seems to rise to the ... All of these guys know how to get their part of the conversation in and make it count. It s a must for Robben and fusion fans, and just a good listen, in general for other fans. © John Heidt © Vintage Guitar Magazine

A brilliant instrumental jazz rock album from the often overlooked but multi-talented composer, songwriter, producer and musician, Neil Larsen who, over the years has contributed so much to music of all genres. Neil has been a successful solo artist as well as writing many songs for artists that include George Benson, Gregg Allman, Rickie Lee, Miles Davis, and many more. He has toured extensively with Gregg Allman, Michele Branch, Rick Springfield, Joe Sample and Dr. John and was pianist and musical director for singer Al Jarreau for eleven years. He has been a session player on over 200 albums including albums by George Harrison, and Rickie Lee Jones. “Orbit” is full of great jazzy blues tracks with Latin influences. The album typically contains a mixture of kick-ass grooves and laid-back coolness. Neil Larsen’s keyboard work is faultless and there are wonderful solos, and incredible rhythm chops from the great Robben Ford. The album is HR by A.O.O.F.C. Check out Neil’s terrific “Jungle Fever” album, Full Moon’s classic jazz rock s/t album, and Dr. John’s "City Lights" album to hear more of Neil [All tracks @ 320 Kbps: File size = 138 Mb]


1. Orbit
2. C Note
3. Demonette
4. Aztec Legend
5. From A Dream
6. Day Train
7. Shine
8. Jungle Fever
9. Arioso *
10. Sudden Samba
11. Red Desert
12. Midnight Pass

* N.B: The Emerald Audiophile Series issue of this album omit this track and include “Intimo”

All tracks composed by Neil Larsen


Neil Larsen - Piano, Organ
Robben Ford - Guitar
Jimmy Haslip - Bass
Tom Brechtlein - Drums
Gary Meek - Saxophone
Lee Thronburg - Trumpet, Flugelhorn


Neil Larsen is a composer/keyboard player from Florida that has been successful in several different fields. As a recording artist, he has recorded four solo albums, one of which was nominated for a Grammy. After teaming up with guitarist Buzz Feiten, they recorded two albums with their band Full Moon, and one with the Larsen-Feiten Band, which included the top ten single, "Who'll Be the Fool Tonight". As a session musician, Neil Larsen has played on over 150 albums, including three with George Harrison, three with Kenny Loggins (and the single "Footloose"), Whitney Houston, Jimmy Cliff and 4 albums with Rickie Lee Jones, including the single, "Chuckie's in Love". His string and horn arragements are featured on albums by Gregg Allman and B.B. King among others. As a composer, Neil has written over 60 songs on various albums, including albums by George Benson ("Weekend in L.A." & "20-20" ), Gregg Allman ("Playin' Up a Storm"), Rickie Lee Jones ("Girl at her Volcano"), Will Smith ("Willenium") and Miles Davis ("The Complete Montreaux Recordings") . He has toured extensively with many artists, including Gregg Allman, Michele Branch, Kenny Loggins, Rick Springfield, Joe Sample and Dr. John and was musical director and pianist for singer Al Jarreau for eleven years, that included tours of South America, Australia, Indonesia, Japan, South Africa, and over 20 tours of europe. After growing up in Sarasota, Florida, Neil moved to New York City in 1971 and began working as a session musician, playing on television jingles, working with his band 'Full Moon', and on albums by Don McLean, the Soul Survivors, Ray Baretto, Bonnie Bramlet and Dan Fogleberg, among others. In 1977, he moved to Los Angeles and began working with producers Stewart Levine, Lenny Waronker, Russ Titleman and Tommy Lipuma, playing on various albums and motion picture and television soundtracks. Tommy went on to sign Neil to a record contract at A & M Records and produce his first two solo albums, "Jungle Fever and"High Gear"- the title song of the second album was nominated for a Grammy as best instrumental rock performance of 1979. Soon after, Neil and Buzz Feiten formed the Larsen-Feiten Band and, again with Tommy Lipuma producing, recorded two albums for Warner Bros., including the single, "Who'll Be the Fool Tonight?". Neil toured extensively with Al Jarreau from 1986 through 1997, during which time he released 2 more solo albums for M.C.A., played several solo tours of Japan and worked and continues to work on many projects with "Orbit" producer Stewart Levine. Since 2001, Neil has toured Europe, South America and Japan with guitarist Robben Ford; Europe, Japan and U.S.A. with Rickie Lee Jones; 3 USA tours with Gregg Allman; featured on new albums by B.B.King, "Let the Good Times Roll" both playing and as an arranger, Will Smith's "Willenium", Robben Ford's "Blue Moon" and Diana Krall's album "The Girl in the Other Room". He also currently works on the TV show "Boston Legal" as an arranger and pianist. © 2007 Straight Ahead Records http://www.straightaheadrecords.com/sound/artists/larsen_ford.html

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