- reviewed by Andree Farias Copyright Christianity Today International
- 2008 1 Sep
- Sweet Georgia Brown
- Straighten Up and Fly Right
- Seven Steps to Heaven
- Windmills of Your Mind
- Someone to Watch Over Me
- Grace (Pre-Prise)
- Back to You
- A-Tisket A-Tasket
- Bein' Green
- Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans
- What's Going On
- Shall We Gather at the River
Perhaps the best explanation as to why a cappella powerhouse Take 6 decided to record an album of jazz and R&B standards is the one offered by longtime member David Thomas: "While we sing lyrics that always exemplify our spiritual and moral convictions, what we really are at the core is a jazz vocal group."
He's not kidding. In the 20-plus years the group has been together, the group has gained its share of attention from the worlds of Christian and gospel music, but its appeal is much greater in jazz and R&B circles. The group has amassed more Grammy awards in those categories (seven in all) than in gospel.
It stands to reason, then, that
One could argue the group's stunning vocal re-imagining of Miles Davis' "Seven Steps to Heaven" makes a case for faith, but let's not get carried away: the song is a jazz standard through and through, and Take 6 does a
There's more. Such is Take 6's rapport with jazzmen and soulsters the world over, they have no problem inviting them along for the ride, including the likes of guitarist George Benson ("Straighten Up and Fly Right"), trumpeter Roy Hargrove ("Someone to Watch Over Me"), crooners Aaron Neville and Brian McKnight ("Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans," "What's Going On"), and even the late great Ella Fitzgerald (her classic "A-Tisket, A-Tasket").
Quite a crowd, sure, but Take 6 is clearly the master of ceremonies here. Admittedly, they sound best when not going the instrumented R&B route—which they occasionally do—exploiting instead their second-to-none a cappella qualities. It is then, during its most stripped-down moments that