It’s a Saturday afternoon and thirty one degrees Celsius in Toronto. Here I am chillaxing at home and listening to New Perspective, the new CD from saxophonist Cameron Ross.
It is reminiscent of being at a spa getting one those great massages that works the knots out and alleviates the stress, causing you to float off on a cloud of relaxation. Track number eight titled Free Your Mind does just that. Whatever I was thinking about disappeared as the melody took full control, captured my thoughts and drew me fully into the moment, and got me snapping my fingers and nodding my head to the beat.
As I listen I had the overwhelming urge to call up a few friends and invite them over, pop open a bottle of chardonnay, put our feet up (painted toenails and all) and sink into the lush rhythms emanating from my stereo. What a perfect way to spend a summer day!
I was drawn in from the very first track. Its opening notes reminded me of Stevie Wonder’s Superstition, although that’s where the resemblance ends. It’s a nice groove that you can bop your head to while driving on the highway. The smoothest groove on the CD for me is On The Ocean. The mellow vocals in the background are soothing to say the least, and inspiring. It’s a song about never giving up on your dreams but holding on to them until you see them manifest.
The CD just seems to take on a new persona once you hit track three, Love Never Fails. I use the word persona ’cause there is life in this thing. It refreshes, revives, heals, soothes, comforts; like the Holy Spirit, and where the Spirit is there is life. It’s a beautiful interpretation of first Corinthians thirteen, and my favourite track on the album.
The CD is a great mix of everything that can touch a wide audience. From the beginning to the last track – the hauntingly melancholy Beautiful, the CD is a work of art. It’s smooth, spiritual, jazzy and funky with a little reggae twist added. Nice! It is great to see that Cameron was unafraid to experiment with different genres of music to demonstrate his musical proficiency.
A few months ago I did not know Cameron Ross or his music. Today I am comfortable saying that New Perspective is going to be in my playlist for a long time and I eagerly look forward to future recordings of this talented musician.
Jazz D’Vine recently chatted with Cameron about his first CD.
JDVe: Hi Cameron. It is great to finally chat with you after all the tweeting and emailing back and forth.
CR: Yes. I agree. It is good to finally connect personally.
JDVe: How did you find out about Jazz D’Vine Entertainment?
CR: I believe I saw you tweeting about one of your shows one day and decided to start following you on twitter. I checked out your website and saw the reviews you did for the other artistes and that’s when I sent you the request to do mine.
JDVe: Thanks for that opportunity, by the way. I was pleased and humbled by your request. So how long have you been playing music?
CR: I have been playing for over twenty-five years.
JDVe: Twenty-five years. That’s a long time. Where are some of the places that you have played?
CR: I have played on Bobby Jones Gospel, Good Morning Memphis and extensively in the church circuit. I will be opening for Ben Tankard next month (September) on this leg of his Full Tank tour. I am looking forward to that.
JDVe: Ben Tankard!? That’s huge! Ben is one of my all time favourite smooth gospel jazz artists. Congratulations! Let’s talk about the CD. Why New Perspective?
CR: I got tired of what I was hearing out there in the form of jazz. I kept complaining about it and one day my friends asked me why don’t I do something about it then. Essentially they said if I didn’t like what I’m hearing then do my own recording and bring a new perspective to it. So I titled my CD New Perspective.
JDVe: That makes a lot of sense. I noticed you were had a show going on last weekend. How did that go?
CR: It went really well. I was very happy with it.
JDVe: So when are you coming to Toronto? When does the New Perspective Tour come to my neck of the woods?
CR: Hmmm…that’s a great idea Karlene, and that is entirely up to you.
JDVe: OK Cameron. We can definitely work on that. Let me look at some possible dates and get back to you. Thanks for chatting with me today. We’ll be in touch.
CR: Sounds good. Thanks Karlene.
Look for Cameron Ross coming to The Gospel Café in Mississauga, Ontario on February 16, 2013.