THE SMOOTH JAZZ RIDE

Lisa McClowry--Time Signatures

Here’s a young lady with a pretty impressive array of credits in several genres, including country, pop, and rock. Here now with producer Jim Peterik (Oscar winner for “Eye of the Tiger” and writer of other notables), Lisa McClowry presents her feel for diversity in music---with a twist of pop, rock, country, and soul all gathered together in one cool place. The CD is entitled Time Signatures and is due out in stores on June 22.

At first listen, you certainly hear the call of her multiple-range sultry voice, and you can hear how easily that all would fit in a rock, country, or pop environment, but here it fits equally as well as a soulful hybrid of melody and charm. Not an exclusively smooth jazz undertaking, it nonetheless croons smooth, as well as being fiery in spots.

The diversity here is impossible to ignore, from the pop-heavy rocker “Born Twice” to the finale, "When It Comes From the Heart."  A total collage of sound.  Never far from her rock, country, and pop influences, she manages to pull all of the threads of those genres together to create a nice fabric of goodies that should be palatable for smooth jazzers, as well.

The call of this material was such that guitar man Nick Colionne even tossed in his contributions on the rather jazzy “Unconditional Surrender,” quite the melodic, hook-tight mover, as well as the finale.  Steve Eisen’s bluesy and soulful sax work with McClowry’s seductive vocal chops, showing off an almost country-style bluesiness, on “When the Phone Don’t Ring” prove to be quite the effective duet.  This just happens to be one of my favs.  It brings together that sassily passionate element of sexy soul and blues to provide the most irresistible of love-enticing atmospheres.  “Utopia,” another fav of mine, moves jazzily and pop-like through a lovely melody and catchy hook.

McClowry does hybrid music no harm whatsoever with her style. Her “come hither” voice can certainly massage and turn a tune in whatever direction she chooses. Time Signatures is proof positive of that. --  Ronald Jackson