||From the Vault...
© Avenue Jazz/Rhino Record
Year of Release: 1977
War Is Coming!
War Is Coming!
Slowly We Walk Together
I Got You
City, Country, City
Deliver The Word
Four Cornered Room
War related sites:
War's 1977 release, Platinum Jazz is a compilation of instrumental
and vocal tracks from their previous albums. War is best remembered for their
vocal hits, such as "Low Rider," "Cisco Kid," "The World Is A Ghetto,"
and "Why Can't We Be Friends." Fans of Latin music and New Age jazz
will appreciate Platinum Jazz, as it defines War as a band that inspires
different musical styles.
The first song, "War Is Coming! War Is Coming!" is a previously
unheard track, from producer Jerry Goldstein's War recordings at Far Out
Productions. Combining funk and Latin rock, "War Is Coming!" certainly
makes true to the album's liner notes regarding this song, To spice up the
Orginally released as a single in June 1977, "Slowly We Walk Together"
was the B-side to "L.A. Sunshine." (Both songs are included on this album.)
"Slowly We Walk Together" defines the soft soul sound of the 1970s.
Its sound definitely does fit the album's title, as it could easily get airplay
on New Age/Smooth Jazz radio stations. "L.A. Sunshine" combines Latin
Rock as heard in Santana's music, with vocals in the style of funk/soul as heard
in Earth, Wind & Fire. As a whole, this one is definitely funky.
Combining pop and a slight touch of jazz, the instrumental "Platinum
Jazz" features the harmonica as the main instrument. It was originally
from the soundtrack of The River Niger. For the light jazz/rock fan,
this one is an enjoyable track. "I Got You" was also from the same
soundtrack, and it is a true Smooth Jazz romantic tune, with great string
arrangements. The instrumental title theme, "River Niger" is easily
compared to funk tunes as "The World Is A Ghetto," and could easily fit
that album's selections of tunes.
The instrumental "H2Overture" has the Smooth Jazz sound,
and was originally from War's release, Deliver The Word. "City, Country,
City" (from The World Is A Ghetto) has a somewhat country influence
with the harmonica, yet it kicks into another funky jazz groove. The harmonica
is heard again in "Smile Happy" (from Why Can't We Be Friends?),
as this song is less funky as "City, Country, City" in the beginning of
the song, yet towards the end, it gets funky once again, as heard on previous
tunes on this release. "Deliver The Word" (title track from the album
of the same name), includes vocals, and is true 1970s slowful Soul.
"Nappy Head", the theme from "Ghetto Man" (from All Day Music
has a Latin flavor, and can easily be compared to Santana's "Let The Children
Play." It can also be compared to "Spill The Wine," a song War had
recorded with Eric Burdon, previously in 1970, with its Latin-flavored music
accompaniment. "Four Cornered Room" has a more Latin-rock sound, and
could easily fit the songs heard from Eric Burdon & War's The Black-Man's
Different musical styles are heard on Platinum Jazz; jazz is a good
word to describe it best. Not the standard big-band jazz, nor easy listening
jazz, it is best defined as New Age/Smooth Jazz, also having some Latin
influenced tracks, which mostly defined War's music as a whole, in general.
Particularly pointed towards Jazz music, Jazz fans will enjoy this album the
most, as compared to other sources of music.
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