johnkatsmc5

johnkatsmc5

Videos

Rock n` Roll

Rock n` Roll

only music

only music

mixcloud for more rare music visit mixcloud

Rock n` Roll

Rock n` Roll

Translate

Total Pageviews

vinyl forever

vinyl forever

Monday, 6 August 2018

Joe Jackson “Body & soul” 1984 UK Jazz Pop,Art Pop


Joe Jackson “Body & soul” 1984 UK Jazz Pop,Art Pop
full spotify
https://open.spotify.com/album/1S58PvtrCZ2l1BrUDI1pGc

full dezeer

https://www.deezer.com/en/album/109385


Body and Soul has Joe Jackson playing both hot- and cool-styled jazz songs, getting some worthy help from producer David Kershenbaum, who also lent Jackson a hand on his I’m the Man album. This is Jackson at his smoothest, from the fragility of “Not Here Not Now” to the earnestness of “Be My Number Two.” While both this song and “Happy Ending” charted fairly low in the U.K., the explosive “You Can’t Get What You Want” went to number 15 in the United States, thanks to the brilliant horn work and colorful jazz-pop mingling of all the other instruments, not to mention Jackson’s suave singing. But the album’s energy isn’t spent entirely on one track. “Cha Cha Loco,” “Losaida,” and the cheery yet stylish “Go for It” carry Jackson’s snazzy persona and enthusiasm even further, laying claim to how comfortable he really is at playing this style of music. Sometimes sounding preserved and entertaining in the same light, Body and Soul uses some of the character of 1982’s Night and Day album, but instead of splitting up the music into mild jazz, pop, and modern R&B, he decided to tackle one of the genres wholeheartedly, and in doing so he came up with a truly impeccable release…. by Mike DeGagne …allmusic….~


The horrifying risks of emotional commitment slathered with amazing jazz styles…
Mega-chart success mostly eluded the amazingly versatile Joe Jackson, but considering the wildly numerous musical guises he inhabited, his even high to medium grade of success seems miraculous. Artistically, of course, he remains one of the most successful, and sadly neglected, rock/pop composers of the 1980s. Following the short, fiery career of the guitar-rock oriented Joe Jackson Band, he dove head first into swing and big band with “Jumpin’ Jive.” His largest commercial breakthrough, “Night and Day,” remains an unparalleled 1980s classic and first showcased his true musical range. With hit singles, MTV airplay and extensive touring, fans probably expected and record companies probably hoped for a copycat follow-up to this top 10 1982 album. Next came a still difficult to find film soundtrack for “Mike’s Murder” and in Orwell’s year the new album “Body and Soul” popped into existence. Something different this way came.
Extensively horn-laden and infused with a mellower jazzy feeling, this new release contained all of its predecessor’s power, though manifested differently. Thematically, it deals largely with lost or misguided love, ambiguous desires, wayward wants and redemptive, though highly tenuous, hope. A big bang of brass thrusts the album into the senses and the uncertainty of judgment, evoking everything from anxiety of critical reception to Saint Peter’s gates to nihilism, fills “The Verdict.” Jackson always veers far from bubble gum feel good sentiments and this song packs some lyrical wallops, such as “We don’t know what happens when we die, we only know we die too soon, but we have to try or else our world becomes a waiting room.” Many philosophers never reach this level of accessible eloquence. The song explores questions such as “is my life meaningful?” and “what would others think about how I spend the time given to me?” The world desperately needs more pop music for thinking adults such as this. “Cha Cha Loco,” an addicitively catchy tragi-comic portrait of marital cold feet, continues the all too human bungled and botched theme. “What she ain’t got, be sure to make sure you don’t need.” “You can’t go back.” Basically, wedding day has arrived, the band is booked, so, well, either go through with it or ditch. The song chooses the former, likely well-worn path, exposing a sad psychology that sees no other options despite itchy, nagging doubts.
“Not Here, Not Now” feels like a blunt blow to the soul. Expect personal memories of horrendous public breakups to emerge from deeply protected consciousness. Emotional constipation churns beneath such scenes when people part ways under the gaze of others. The song aptly expresses this hopeless longing to express anger, hurt, fear, loss and pain in its devastating chorus. Jackson’s next chart hit, “You Can’t Get What You Want (Till You Know What You Want),” claims that personal desires may not be as complicated as people think. “Sometimes you can’t see that all you need is one thing.” Human nature can trick us into thinking that if we just keep seeking we’ll find “it,” but many people find nothing except a need for more desultory seeking. And on it goes until our real needs come into focus. Patience may pay off. “Go For It,” the closest this album comes to a throwaway, sounds somewhat like a tongue in cheek cheesy musical billowing with false optimism and potentially bad advice. The instrumental “Loisaida” just sounds gorgeous throughout. It proves that Jackson knew his horns. “Happy Ending” sardonically cites both “Brave New World” and “1984” while balancing emotion and intellect while faced with the frightening and glorious prospects of a new relationship. It provides no answers or consolation, just conflicting thoughts and emotions.
Anyone who has experienced new desires following a divorce or a painful loss of a valued relationship will claim “Be My Number Two” as their anthem. This song, one of Jackson’s best and most underrated, delves into new emotional territory appropriate for an era where “till death do us part” sounds hollow. Again, uncertainty and cautious hope pervade the lyrics and music, perfectly expressing the horrifying anticipation of a new beginning, or another miserable failure, with a new partner. The chorus almost angrily exhorts, with the jaded impatience of experience, that “if you got something to say to me, don’t try to play your funny games on me.” “Heart of Ice” seeks to undo the damage described in so many of the album’s previous songs. Too many such run ins and the heart becomes encrusted and cold and ready for more mistakes. If only the sun could melt it back to a simpler more innocent time. Though some hope exists here, the suggested remedy of first cutting out the heart of ice seems laced with hints of irreversible anguish. It seems to say that though we can heal, we’ll never be the same. Was it all a mistake? We’ll never know until we do.
“Body and Soul” manages to encompass the ineffable longing for companionship that always seems tinged with the possibility that we’re walking into a viper pit. Highly challenging musically and lyrically, as well as intellectually and emotionally, it stands as yet another of Joe Jackson’s masterpieces that began with “Night and Day” and culminated in the unjustifiably underrated “Blaze of Glory.” Very few artists of the 1980s displayed such versatility, depth, intelligence and emotional power as witnessed on Jackson’s late pop records. They stand as paramount examples of the “music as art” tradition that started in the 1960s and that has slowly eroded away to the present day. Hopefully others will someday find inspiration in these classics and infuse popular music once again with multi-dimensional poignancy…..by….ewomack …..~


A great recording!
I fell in love with this album when it was released, and one of the reasons was the extraordinary sound quality, which multiple reviewers have commented about. This thing was a “big deal” when it was released; originally labelled as CD5000, it was, I believe, A&M Records first DDD release back when that was a big deal (digitally recorded, mixed and mastered). But Joe wasn’t interested in “using” digital for effects, but rather to capture the band as accurately as possible. He sought out a great, medium-sized hall used by Nonesuch Records for chamber music recording, an older hall of wood and brick with great immediacy (opening of “The Verdict” or how “Loisaida” soars), and then everything was recorded live. Period. No multi-track, no dubbing, just Joe and the best band he could afford (and right after “Night & Day”, that was the best). I love the music, but that’s always going to be a product of personal taste; but this is an album from almost 35 years ago that will show off your good sound system, whether it be speakers or cans…..by… D. M. Skora….~

After the huge success of Jackson’s previous album “Night And Day” Joe continued in generally the same direction musically although inflicting even more jazz, soul, and R & B influences here. The album produced the big hit with the snazzy “You Can’t Get What You Want (Till You Get What You Want), and was a successful album commercially. I like this one quite a bit better than "Night And Day”. The album starts out a little slow for me as “The Verdict” and “Cha Cha Loco” are probably my two least favorite songs on the album, but after that with the possible exception of “Go For It”, everything is great. “Not Here Not Now”, the instrumental “Loisaida”, “Happy Ending” which features an incredible vocal duet between Jackson and Ellen Foley, the somber duet “Be My Number Two” and the rousing finale “Heart Of Ice” are all top notch Jackson. For the most part this is a very strong Joe Jackson album and probably an essential disc for fans…by… Steven Sly…..~

When growing up? Songs such as “Stepping Out” and “Breaking Us Into” were 45’s in constant rotation on my family’s turntable. Many years later a friend of mine explained to me that a local gay men’s choir he was a part of actually performed the entirety of this albums predecessor ‘Night And Day’ one time. Had no idea the scope with which that 1982 album reached people so personally-both in the musical and thematic sense. On this follow up two years later? Jackson upped the ante by paying tribute to classic Blue Note album art for the famous Sonny Rollins collection Vol 2 and bringing in many new members to his big band for the album as well.
“The Verdict” opens the album with a big one/two drum wallop with the trumpets and flugelhorns accenting each beat before the piano based main melody kicks into gear. “Cha Cha Loco” is an elaborately arranged slow crawling salsa while “Not Here,Not Now” and “Be My Number Two” are a stripped down piano and percussion based melody with liquid bass accents. “You Can’t Get What You Want (Till You Know What You Want)” is a horn packed and wonderfully crafted funk/jazz jam with a thick,busy bass/guitar and horn chorus interaction. “Go For It” has a bouncy 60’s Motown beat with call and responses blending punk and gospel approaches.
“Happy Ending” is a Brill Building style pop duet with Elaine Caswell while “Loisaida” and the closing “Heart Of Ice” are both enormously cinematic instrumentals built around fanfares of keyboards and horns. This album definatly expands on the melodic live band flavor introduced so strongly on it’s predecessor. The difference on this album is the the horns take on a far higher priority. Not only that,but little of the music here has anything even remotely radio/commercial friendly by mid 80’s pop standards. Joe Jackson was seeming to be re-writing the music books-creating music for the listeners and the live show that followed this release more than anything. Even though that tour exhausted the man into a brief hiatus musically? This is still a prime example of his musical talents…..By Andre S. Grindle…..~

A deliberate cover parody of Rollins’ Volume Two album (see below), Jackson here sets out to blend variations on themes found in previous albums (and cuts) while offering variety which always manages to keep pace steps far ahead of industry itself. It was Jackson who, upon seeing final product of video adaption of Night and Day (e.g., “Steppin Out”), made decision to literally abandon medium and stick strictly to format of musicality itself. In some sense I believe he is a formalist committed to the craft well beyond the mediocritic (pun non-intentional) and often slick fashioning of sundry packaging. Not as popish as previous or rhythmically jived as live album, Body and Soul figures prominently (strangely, in a quiet way) as transcending the literalness of commercial confines to the figurative of musical genius. Here is one impassioned to the form, the genre, the precision to innovate without fear of consequences. Good job, Joe….By jack schaaf…..~

Joe Jackson’s seventh studio album opened up an understanding that the joy of music extends beyond mere melody, to arrangement, instrumentation and style
Two years ago I took my then 10-year-old son to a Joe Jackson concert at London’s Cadogan Hall. It was my 10th time seeing him live; my son’s first. He was the same age I was when I first started exploring music and I wanted to share with him my passion for Joe’s. It was my favourite person and my favourite musician in the same room, and while my son enjoyed the concert, I sensed it wasn’t really up his street. I had to accept the music that would change my son’s life might be different from mine.
In 1980, as a 12-year-old growing up in Toronto, I had embraced the era’s popular music, bands that today are mocked relentlessly: Journey, Styx, Foreigner. These were the chart-topping, arena-filling bands with musical libraries of equal parts loud guitars, crunchy piano ballads and catchy three-and-a-half minute melodies. And man, could those guys sing.
By the time I was a teenage wannabe rock star, I’d already started playing in clubs with a variety of bands in the Toronto scene. I thought I knew what music was and what it meant to me. The music I listened to shaped me as a singer. But then I heard Joe Jackson’s Body and Soul album and it upended my entire musical lexicon.
I’d spent the summer I turned 16 working as a camp counsellor in a beautiful setting by a lake in northern Ontario. One guy I was sharing quarters with was in charge of waking us up every morning and within seconds of his alarm clock sounding off, he’d reach over and press play on his cassette player to start up on Joe Jackson’s seventh studio album. As the summer wore on, I found myself getting more and more drawn to his songs. The melodies were Beatles-esque, the lyrics clever but not pretentious and the arrangements more sophisticated than anything I’d paid attention to before. Every song had been inspired by a different genre, yet the entire album coalesced due to its unique use of horns and Joe’s distinctively unpolished singing voice full of blithe assertiveness.
The album had been released in March of that year and had one fairly big radio hit with You Can’t Get What You Want (Till You Know What You Want), which went deep into the top 20 on the US and Canadian charts. No small feat as this was a year in which Michael Jackson (no relation), Madonna, Duran Duran, Prince, Lionel Ritchie and Bruce Springsteen smothered the music scene. I recognised his name from his earlier hits – Steppin’ Out, Breaking Us in Two, Is She Really Going Out With Him?, Fools in Love – but initially his song was just another radio offering. At that time, the songs that came over the radio, from Wham! to Earth, Wind and Fire to Van Halen, sounded generically commercial because they’d all emanated from the same box; sometimes even the same station.
Body and Soul opens with the drum- and horn-heavy The Verdict, inspired by the Paul Newman film of the same name. In it, Joe equates the loneliness and stage fright of performing with that of a frontline solicitor representing a witness in a high-profile legal case. Next is Cha Cha Loco, a Latin-flavoured homage to the joys of dancing, followed by the tinkling piano-based song of love put on hold, Not Here, Not Now. The radio hit You Can’t Get What You Want, with an intoxicating, jazz-inspired guitar solo from Vinnie Zumo, leads into Go For It, a quick march through the merits of thinking positive, horns blaring like the studio was on fire. The lyrics reference Ray Charles and Babe Ruth, who’d beaten the odds despite having to overcome certain obstacles.
Side two, as it was delivered before CDs and MP3s, opens with Loisaida, a lilting instrumental piece featuring a trumpet melody that I always wished would go on forever. Happy Ending is a catchy pop duet, a boy-meets-girl romp through a date movie that even places the song in history: “It’s not so easy/ It’s ’84 now”. The penultimate song, Be My Number Two, is one of Joe’s most confessional songs of that era relying almost exclusively on his piano as accompaniment. Finally, Heart of Ice ends the album with nearly seven minutes of slowly building musical tension – easily the most jazz-influenced track – before a brief lyrical disclaimer that the singer may be trying to shed himself of his cold-hearted posturing that typified his earlier songs. The song and the album end on a high note, accentuated by a thrilling one-bar fanfare from the omnipresent horns.
This album not only changed the way I appreciated popular music, typified until then by my allegiance to straightforward arena rock, it changed the way I listened to all music. Besides being attracted to melodies, I now heard arrangements, instrumentation, musical styles and lyrics. I homed in on the craft of songwriting. I discovered the fine line between genres that early-80s musicians such as Joe, Sting and Paul Simon were eager to cross. Most importantly, I paid close attention to how the music made me feel. To this day, with every listen I gather new things from the songs.
Even the album cover, which I pored over after I bought my own copy, was different. It was styled to look like a vintage jazz album, with Joe posing with a saxophone and a cigarette. I later learned that he had unapologetically mimicked the cover of saxophonist Sonny Rollins’ 1957 release, Volume 2. On the back, a music writer had written something on each song and how it was recorded, just like the Blue Note records of the 50s and 60s. The whole package inside and out fed me into a joyous learning curve.
Soon after succumbing to Body and Soul’s heady mix, I quickly welcomed Joe’s back catalogue into my life, including his early “angry young man” albums (Joe claims he was never angry) and his tribute to the swing era, Jumpin’ Jive. They all had his distinctive fingerprints on them. I bought all his soundtrack recordings. I found a Thelonious Monk tribute album with a contribution by Joe that also featured Dr John, Bobby McFerrin, NRBQ, Gil Evans and Todd Rundgren, with whom many years later Joe toured. From there I fell into jazz fusion, prog rock and some electronic music. It didn’t matter what label anyone wanted to pin on a certain artist, all that mattered was the effect the music had on me. Like Joe has often said in quoting Duke Ellington: “There are only two kinds of music: good and bad.”
In 1999, Joe’s book A Cure for Gravity came out and during his book tour I went to see him in Ann Arbor, Michigan, near where I was living at the time. I couldn’t wait to have him sign my copy so that I could tell him how much his music had changed me, how I could trace the family tree of my music appreciation to that first moment when I understood what Body and Soul had done to me. But as I approached him at his signing table, I took a deep breath and then just said: “Hi!” He returned the salutation, signed my book and handed it back to me. That was the extent of our communication. At the last minute I decided, perhaps subconsciously, that if I revealed my truth to him, the moment might somehow be ruined by sycophancy. Instead, I kept my joy to myself.
My so-called music career soon faded but my calling as a music listener didn’t wane, and Joe’s music continues to take centre stage. I’ve spent more time with his songs than any other artist’s, with the possible exception of the Beatles. For me he has always struck a gentle balance between good songwriting, performance, recording integrity and that visceral understanding I might never be able to articulate.
These days my son quietly takes his iPod on the school bus and comes home singing songs I don’t know by artists I’ve never heard of. I trust that somewhere within that maze of modern music is his own Joe. One day he’ll discover that turning point and he’ll learn, like I did, about music’s transformative properties. Still, I’m happy I had the chance to take him to that concert. I’ve done my part..by….Jon Magidsohn…the quardian review…..~



A Forgotten Treasure
Trivial Bits
Back in 1984, we didn’t have a clue here rock and roll was going to take us. Disco was finally dead, thank God (Allah, Buddha, Mohammed, Zeus, insert your religious preference). Country rock went back to hills and Punk was giving way to New Wave and Alternative music. We were in the midst of transition. Bands with REALLY big (colored) hair and girls wearing solar panels as mini skirts, dancing in front of us on my MTV.
Enter Joe Jackson. Joe had been around for a while already. He hit the major music scene in 1978. Who can forget (I wish I could), Is She Really Going Out With Him from his Look Sharp release. In the years that followed, Joe released five more records, most notably, Night and Day, an album some say was his best.
Joe was no different than the times, he (apparently) didn’t have a clue what kind of music he wanted to make. Keep in mind the album before Night and Day was Jumpin’ Jive, a hepped up version of big band classics redone only as Joe Jackson could do them.
Thinking about Jumpin’ Jive brings back some great memories. I had the DJ at our wedding play a few cuts from that album. Imagine, everybody dancing to that immortal tune What’s the Use of Getting Sober When You’re Gonna Get Drunk Again, and Jack You’re Dead (maybe there was something Freudian in that one). You should have seen their faces when we spun Planet Claire by the B-52’s. It was a sight, but I digress.
Enough Already, Get to the Point
The reason I decided to write about Body and Soul isn’t because the music but more so because of the recording quality and techniques used to achieve one of the better Rock and Roll recordings you may ever hear. The major awards presenters turned a deaf ear to this release, and wrongly so I might add. The songs on this album are quite good, not spectacular, but really good none the less.
Joe Jackson was looking to do something a little different with this release. He felt the music of the day was too predictable. After searching for sometime for the proper recording venue, he settled on a Masonic Lodge in New York City. Vanguard Studios used this hall quite often for orchestral recordings.
What really impresses me is the recording quality. It is truly stunning, considering. Why did I qualify that? Let me tell you. The main recording was done with just two microphones. They were Neumann M-50’s suspended 15 feet (4.5 meters) above the band and it was mastered on a 4 track machine. They also close mic'ed the instruments but used that recording very carefully so they wouldn’t destroy the ambiance they were trying to achieve with this hall.
What was the result? An awesome recording. Absolute, natural decay of musical notes and voices. Uncolored (and unprocessed sounding) ambiance. Just a huge sound. It’s almost as if your are the only one there in the hall listening to the sound check for the band before the big concert that night. It’s really impressive. Natural, crisp treble from the cymbals, firm, deep bass from the guitar and a wonderful rich resonance from Joe’s piano and sax. It’s chocked full of detail. Very few of the instruments sound thin, or worse yet, sound overdone.
Now, something I haven’t told you yet, Body and Soul is digitally recorded and digitally mastered. I know you (analog) purists out there will immediately discount this album, fine, it’s your loss. For the rest of you still reading, don’t “them” convince you that digital is an inferior medium to record on, that’s just plain hogwash. Analog can sound just as bad as digital if done improperly and visa-versa. This album is extremely well recorded.
So…
Bottom line,
What’s to loose? $5 at your favorite used records store.
What’s to gain? A great recording with some pretty good music that doesn’t sound too dated (early 80’s post-punk).
Who knows, this album may even find it’s way into your “demonstration disc’s” that we all have to impress newbie’s to our listening rooms.
As a side bar, I’ve almost convinced myself, one of the main reasons audiophiles gravitate to classical music is because of the recording quality. Body and Soul shows that IF you care more about sound quality than heavy mixes and overdubs, you can produce one hell of an album regardless of the genre. It also helps if you are a good musician.
Just a final thought, do you think it would be too much to ask that ALL recording engineers and producers be required to use this album as part of their study curriculum?……~
Twenty-two years after its first release here I am writing about one of my favourite albums of all times. We reviewed this album back in 2001 (see Scott Faller’s review).
I’ve been a Joe Jackson fan since his very first album (“Look sharp!” 1979) and it is not by coincidence that I decided to cite an excerpt from one of his songs in the “subtitle” of this website (taken from “A slow song”, Night and day album, see our Home Page)).
I’m not going to spend many words describing Joe Jackson’s Art, just use these adjectives: witty, emotionally and mentally involving, caleidoscopic. His talent touches every aspect of Music: pop, rock, jazz and even Classical (“Night Music”, “Will power”, “Symphony No.1”, “Heaven and Hell” etc.).
Body and soul
Released in 1984, after the worldwide success of “Night and Day” (1982), “Body and soul” was a very ambitious project. Entirely recorded in digital with 3M 32 and 4-track machines, this album took a long time to make. For example, the choice of a “good” music hall where to record the album was long and difficult. Finally an ancient Masonic Lodge used by Vanguard studios for classical recordings was chosen for its natural and “lively” acoustics.
Every attempt was made to pick up the sound and the live ambience of the hall. In “Be my number two”, perhaps the most inspired track of the album, only a pair of vintage Neumann M-50 microphones was used to pick up Joe’s voice and piano. The whole band was then close-miked to balance every instrument carefully and preserve, at the same time, the “ambience” of the stone-and-wood hall.
Joe Jackson has always paid great attention to the quality of his albums, even from a strictly technical point of view. Not surprisingly, many of his albums are still used as “references” by many audiophiles.
“Body and soul” is a real masterpiece, musically and technically. The witty mixture of jazz flavours, rock energy and latin rhythms is something too tasty to be missed. The album contains also an instant hit as “You can’t get what you want (till you know what you want)” that is not hard to hear, from time to time, even nowadays on FM.
From a strictly “audiophile” point of view this album is a must-have. First of all, it is one of the few pop/rock albums that contain a real 3D soundstage. You can distinctly hear the sound of the Masonic Lodge, especially on tracks like “The Verdict” and the already cited “Be my number two”. This is quite rare as, normally, electrified Music sounds geometrically “flat” or artificially 3-dimensional.
Then you have Earth-shaking dynamics. Take the finale of “Be my number two” as an example: the song is mainly based on voice and piano but when it approaches the finale the whole band explodes literally, with thunderous drums and horns…it is hard, for any HiFi system, to fully reproduce this terrific dynamic jump without compression or distortion. The amount of energy required to the amplifier is simply HUGE.
Another perfect example of “full bodied” drums can be heard in the opening track “The verdict” while an irresistible, precise, powerful and articulated bass groove can be enjoyed during “You can’t get what you want”. This is one of the tracks that should be listened at hilariously high volume. Make your neighbourhoods dance with you! :-)
One note about Joe’s voice: it is always been difficult to reproduce but “Body and soul” is one of the best ways to fully enjoy it: expressive, powerful, sometimes harsh…your HiFi system should be able to follow all of his “inflections” without distortion.
This album is/was available both on LP and CD (I own both) and, guess what, the vinyl release sounds way better: fuller, more dynamic and groovy. Even the 3D image is wider and more realistic. The bass lines are fuller, deeper and better articulated. On CD they sound a bit more dry and sterile.
I know this may sound weird, considering the original master tape was fully digital, but don’t ask me why vinyl sounds better. It simply does that :-)
I’m pretty sure vinyl copies of “Body and soul” are becoming rare and are available only on the second-hand market. On Ebay there are several copies of “Body and Soul” on vinyl and prices range from 5 to 15$. Choose carefully the item to bid on, as second-hand LPs can be damaged by worn out sylii or wrong tracking weights.
If you can find a decent one, buy it, you won’t regret every cent spent on it. Otherwise, even the CD release is fine. A remastered version has been released in 1997 (UK) but I haven’t had the possibility to audition it, so I can’t compare this to the original one or to the vinyl one.
Conclusion
Despite the fact 22 years passed this album is still among my favourites when I have to test some HiFi component. I can’t remember how many times I’ve played this record (CD and LP) but I truly enjoy it every time as it was the first time. Instead of using those boring test records, “Body and soul” is an extremely pleasant way to test HiFi.
Highly recommended……Review from TNT Audio:….~

Don’t Wait in the Wings 
It seems the main trait of Body and Soul is its musical refinement. “Some people live so fast, they’re so scared of getting old. Some people keep on working, all they do is line their graves with gold. We don’t know what happens when we die, we only know we die too soon but we have to try or else our world becomes a waiting room…” And Joe Jackson tries hard. All the melodies boast rich, almost rhapsodic orchestration and the songwriting is at the top of creativity. “These words of love so hard for me to find. How can I change my mind if you can only lie? These shattered dreams I try to build again but looks could kill again and I’m too young to die. Smiling faces all around us, you don’t want to make a scene – not here, not now and I don’t want to cry.” Both “Not Here, Not Now” and “Heart of Ice” are terribly moody and they are the best songs on the album….by…Babe N Co ….~

Jackson continues his journey into jazz here even picking out an old jazz theatre to record this, “night and day” had done rather well and his confidence was clearly high.
The emphasis this time is very much on the horn section and piano powering the agonised opener “the verdict” and the latino groove of “cha cha loco” expertly. The album has a variety and depth though from the van morrison styled soul of the hit “you can’t get what you want”, through instrumentals and on to the girl-pop duet on “happy ending”.
Like it’s predecessor it has a lot of adult themes and thinking behind it’s lyrics which means you might not always be in the mood for it,but when you are little else will hit the spot better. For evidence check the unerring accuracy behind the break up drama of “not here,not now” and the sweet romanticism of “be my number 2”…..by….GARFIELDACRES….~
For me this is the best Joe Jackson album, even better than Night and day. This is a great, great album for a lot of reasons:
- The album’s recording technology. Recorded at a theatre normally used for classical recordings, the theatre’s atmosphere is picked up by 2 microphones. It creates a wonderful sound on the bass drum and floor toms, listen to “The verdict” and “Be my number two” for some of the best drum sounds ever heard.
- JJ’s piano chords. Tracks like “Cha cha loco”, “Happy ending” and “You can’t get what you want” have some of the best jazzy chords ever heard in pop music.
- The closing bit of “Be my number two” where JJ is finally joined by the rest of the band after playing most of the song solo at the piano, that always brings tears to my eyes. Listen to the wonderful sax and violin.
- “Happy ending” is probably the best single he ever recorded. It should have been a huge hit. It’s key change from minor to major for every chorus sounds so natural you don’t even realise it’s there.
- The album was recorded with his best band ever. Listen to the instrumentals “Loisaida” and “Heart of ice” to hear what these musicians can do.
- The great ballad “Not here, not now” with Michael Moreale’s wonderful fluegelhorn solo, stunning.
- Its use of horns is wonderful. Just a trumpet and an alto sax, but JJ’s arrangements make it sound like a full horn section.
- After doing Night and day without a guitar, the guitar is back again here. Instead of the keyboards/percussion based sound of that album, this album has a more full band sound.
So how does this album stand up more than 20 years after its release? Like a classic. There’s only one slightly weak track (“Go for it”), the other stuff is classic, timeless music. A forgotten masterpiece by one of the most talented artists of the last 30 years……by….mdekoning ……~
Easily Joe Jackson’s best album, and that’s saying something.
Look, I realize Joe Jackson is the antithesis of a cool rock star. He’s a dork. He’s probably been a dork his whole life. He recorded some great records, though, and Body and Soul stands above them all as the work of an artist in complete control of his medium.
Body and Soul was the album that exposed me to Joe Jackson. Actually, it wasn’t the whole album at first. It was “You Can’t Get What You Want ('til You Know What You Want)”. Great song. I bought the album for the song, and at first it was a bit of a tough sell. The music was a little more grown-up than what I was used to listening to in high school. I listened to rock bands in high school. The bands I listened to weren’t slouches–The Police, U2, The Clash, etc–but their music lacked the musical sophistication that Jackson drew on to make Body and Soul.
It’s a great name for the album–Body and Soul. It sums the music up. The songs all have substance: body. They deal with complex issues like aging and disappointment without being maudlin or mellodramatic. The songs are honestly emotional: soulful. Joe Jackson is not a soul singer. He doesn’t perform soul music nor does he write it. There’s no denying that the songs on Body and Soul are in fact soulful, though. They’re honest and emotional, often written from a viewpoint of a person in pain. Like most good soul music, they’re not written from the perspective of some one who’s lost the fight, though. Hurt, yes, but not a victim. The songs have heart and fight left in 'em.
The stand out track for me is easily “Be My Number Two”. It’s one of the prettiest songs Joe Jackson ever wrote, and like so much of this record the lyrics deal with complicated emotions and adult situations. By adult I don’t mean in an R or X rated sense, but in the sense that the issues he’s dealing with simply can’t be understood by most teenagers. I certainly didn’t understand them. I could comprehend what he was singing about at an intellectual level, but I couldn’t relate to the themes. Some twenty-four years later, these songs make a lot of sense to me. Still, people of any age should be able to appreciate the musical achievement of this record. It’s got great melodies, great rhythms and excellent lyrics. The music on the record is unique. It’s rooted in rock, but not limited to it. Jackson draws on classical, jazz, R&B, latin and even showtunes to round out the sound. “Be My Number Two” brings it all together with a big Springsteen ending.
Great album, this…..by…..atomicWedgie ……~

Credit Joe Jackson for his willingness to try new things. On Body and Soul his “new thing” is to try the old approach to recording music. It works. Jackson sought out, and found an old cement and stone room to record the album in, and did the tracks essentially with only two microphones. It was however recorded on a then very modern digital system. The songs are a nice mix of styles from the dynamic metropolitan sound of “Losaida” (you can see a foggy New York skyline when you listen) to the Latin groove of “Cha-cha Loco”, to the teenage love of “Happy Ending” to the 80’s aerobic feel of “Go For It”, this is an album of many styles all played very well by Jackson’s usual stable of fine musicians. With the back bone of Graham Maby on bass, Vinnie Zumo on guitar, and Gary Burke on drums, Jackson has rarely gone wrong. He doesn’t go wrong here either, because this is a VERY fine album….by…..timregler …..~


Joe Jackson’s broad spectrum of influences intermingled in an unusual way on this 1984 outing. Reprising the Latin jazz touches and cosmopolitan pop of Night and Day, he adds hints of everything from Gershwin to '60s pop, for a more organic, old-school feel and a surprisingly cohesive sound. The album’s hit was the breezy R&B tune “You Can’t Get What You Want (Till You Know What You Want)”. It’s surrounded by tracks that mate Jackson’s sophisticated pop savvy with moments of Phil Spector–tinged grandeur (“The Verdict,” “Be My Number Two”), dashes of New York City salsa (“Cha Cha Loco”), and a cinematic, orchestral-style jazz instrumental (“Loisaida”)……~


In his 1999 memoir, A Cure for Gravity: A Musical Pilgrimage, Joe Jackson writes approvingly of George Gershwin as a musician who kept one foot in the popular and one in the classical realms of music. Like Gershwin, Jackson possesses a restless musical imagination that has found him straddling musical genres unapologetically, disinclined to pick one style and stick to it. The word “chameleon” often crops up in descriptions of him, but Jackson prefers to be thought of as “eclectic.” Is he the Joe Jackson he appeared to be upon his popular emergence in 1979, a new wave singer/songwriter with a belligerent attitude derisively asking, “Is She Really Going Out with Him?” The reggae-influenced Joe Jackson of 1980’s Beat Crazy? The jump blues revivalist of 1981’s Joe Jackson’s Jumpin’ Jive? The New York salsa-styled singer of 1982’s “Steppin’ Out”? The R&B/jazz-inflected Jackson of 1984’s Body & Soul? Or is he David Ian Jackson, L.R.A.M. (Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music), who composes and conducts instrumental albums of contemporary classical music such as 1987’s Will Power and 1999’s Grammy-winning Symphony No. 1? He is all of these, Jackson himself no doubt would reply, and a few others besides.
The roots of that eclecticism lie in the conflicts of his youth. He was born David Ian Jackson on August 11, 1954 (not 1955, as some references mistakenly state) in Burton-upon-Trent, Staffordshire, England. His parents had met when his father was in the Navy and his mother was working in her family’s pub in Portsmouth on the south coast of England. They initially settled in his father’s hometown, Swadlincote, on the border of Staffordshire and Derbyshire, but when Jackson was a year old, they moved back to his mother’s hometown, and he was raised in Portsmouth and nearby Gosport. His father, Ronald Jackson, became a plasterer.
Growing up in working-class poverty, Jackson was a sickly child, afflicted with asthma, first diagnosed when he was three and producing attacks that lasted into his twenties. Prevented from playing sports, he turned to books and eventually music. At 11, he began taking violin lessons, later studying timpani and oboe at school. His parents got him a secondhand piano when he was in his early teens, and he began taking lessons, soon deciding that he wanted to be a composer when he grew up. He played percussion in a citywide student orchestra. But his social milieu was more accepting of different forms of popular music than it was of the classics, and he developed a taste for that, too. Becoming interested in jazz, he formed a trio and, at the age of 16, began playing piano in a pub, his first professional gig.
By the early '70s, Jackson, who had paid little attention to rock before, became a fan of progressive rock, notably such British groups as Soft Machine. Meanwhile, in 1972, he passed an advanced “S” level exam in music that entitled him to a grant to study music, and he was accepted at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Rather than moving to the city, he spent his grant money on equipment and commuted several days a week to attend classes while continuing to live at home and play pop music locally. He switched from writing classical compositions to pop songs. Invited to join an established band called the Misty Set, he sang his first lead vocal on-stage. He moved to another established band called Edward Bear (the name taken from a character in Winnie the Pooh, not to be confused with the Canadian band of the same name that recorded for Capitol Records in the early '70s). Deciding that he resembled the title character on a television puppet show called Joe 90, his bandmates began calling him “Joe,” and it stuck. After six months, the two principals in Edward Bear decided to retire from music, and with their permission he took over the name and the group’s bookings and brought in a couple of his friends, lead singer/guitarist Mark Andrews (later of Mark Andrews & the Gents) and bassist Graham Maby.
Jackson continued to attend the Royal Academy, where he studied composition, orchestration, and piano while majoring in percussion. He also occasionally played piano in the National Youth Jazz Orchestra. He graduated from the academy after three years in 1975. By then, Edward Bear (forced to change its name to Edwin Bear because of the more successful Canadian band, and then to Arms & Legs) were attracting more attention and acquired management, which in turn signed the band to MAM Records. In April 1976, MAM released the first Arms & Legs single, with Andrews’ “Janie” on the A-side and Jackson’s “She’ll Surprise You” on the B-side. Second and third singles followed in August and February 1977, but the records did not sell. Meanwhile, in October 1976, Jackson quit the band to become pianist and musical director at the Playboy Club in Portsmouth. He was determined to save enough money to record his own album and release it himself. In August 1977, he played his first gigs as the leader of the Joe Jackson Band, singing and playing keyboards, backed by Andrews (sitting in temporarily and soon replaced by Gary Sanford), Maby, and drummer Dave Houghton. At the same time, he quit the Playboy Club job to become pianist/musical director for a cabaret act, Koffee 'n’ Kream, that was beginning a national tour in the wake of their triumph on the TV amateur show Opportunity Knocks.
Jackson toured with Koffee 'n’ Kream from the fall of 1977 to the spring of 1978, and the money he made enabled him to move to London in January 1978 and continue recording his album in a Portsmouth studio. He began shopping demo tapes to record labels in London without success until he was heard by American producer David Kershenbaum. Kershenbaum was scouting for talent on behalf of A&M Records, and he arranged for Jackson to be signed to A&M on August 9, 1978, after which they immediately re-recorded Jackson’s album. They completed it quickly, and at the end of the month the Joe Jackson Band embarked on an extensive national tour.
Despite his classical education and background playing many types of pop music in pubs and clubs, Jackson had become genuinely enamored of the punk/new wave movement of the late '70s in England, especially attracted by the energy and simplicity of the music and the angry, aggressive tone of the lyrics. He had no trouble incorporating these elements into his own music, and if he was, to an extent, using the new wave label as a flag of convenience, the style nevertheless was a valid vehicle of expression for him. Of course, first impressions can be lasting, and to many people he would, ever after, be an angry new wave singer/songwriter, no matter what else he did.
In October 1978, A&M released the first Joe Jackson single, “Is She Really Going Out with Him?,” a rhythmic ballad in which the singer ponders why “pretty women” are attracted to “gorillas” and worries about his own inadequacy. The record failed to chart, but Jackson and his band continued to tour around the U.K. and began to attract press attention. Look Sharp!, his debut album, followed in January 1979, again, to no significant sales at first. The LP contained more songs in the vein of “Is She Really Going Out with Him?,” many of them uptempo rockers with strong melodies and lyrics full of romantic disappointment and social criticism, bitterly expressed and with more than a touch of self-deprecation. (One, “Got the Time,” was sufficiently raucous to be covered by heavy metal band Anthrax in essentially the same arrangement on their Persistence of Time album in 1990.) A&M released “Sunday Papers,” an attack on the salaciousness of tabloid newspapers, as a single in February, again without reaction. But in March, Look Sharp! finally broke into the charts, eventually peaking at the bottom of the Top 40. The same month, A&M released the album in the U.S., and it quickly charted, reaching the Top 20 after “Is She Really Going Out with Him?” was released as a single in May (while Jackson toured North America) and became a Top 40 hit; in September, the LP was certified gold in the U.S. In the U.K., “Is She Really Going Out with Him?” was re-released in July and charted in August, making the Top 20. Jackson was nominated for a 1979 Grammy Award for Best Rock Vocal Performance, Male, for the single.
Meanwhile, Jackson toured more or less continually, playing dates in Continental Europe in June and then back in the U.K. through August before returning to North America. But he had found the time and inspiration to craft a quick follow-up to Look Sharp!, and his second LP, I’m the Man, was released on October 5. That was a little too soon for the U.S. market, where Look Sharp! had not yet exhausted its run, and while the album made the Top 40, it was a relative sales disappointment, with the single “It’s Different for Girls” failing to enter the Hot 100. The story was different in the U.K., however, where I’m the Man made the Top 20 and “It’s Different for Girls” reached the Top Five. Critically, the album was considered a continuation of Look Sharp!, an opinion shared by Jackson himself. The first blush of his emergence fading, Jackson was beginning to be viewed by critics as the third in a line of angry British singer/songwriters starting with Graham Parker and continuing with Elvis Costello, and his commercial success created resentment, especially because he was not as forthcoming with the media as the garrulous Costello.
The U.S. tour ran into November, followed by more shows in the U.K. in November and December. Jackson went back on the road in February 1980 with a few U.S. dates, followed by some U.K. shows and a European tour that ran from March to May. Like other punk/new wave acts, he had used reggae rhythms on occasion, notably on “Fools in Love” on Look Sharp! and “Geraldine and John” on I’m the Man. In May, he released an EP in the U.K. including a cover of Jimmy Cliff’s “The Harder They Come.” In acknowledgment of his group’s importance to his sound, the disc was billed to the Joe Jackson Band. After dates in the U.K. in May and June, the Joe Jackson Band returned to North America for a tour that lasted into August; they finally took a break after a few more shows at the end of the month.
Beat Crazy, released in October, also was billed to the Joe Jackson Band. The album featured less of the frantic punk sound of its predecessors, instead absorbing the dub-reggae and ska influences that were topping the British charts just then in the music of bands like the Specials and the English Beat. But it was a relative disappointment commercially, peaking in the 40s in both the U.S. and U.K., with its singles failing to chart. One reason for the reduced sales in America may have been that the group did not tour to support it there. The Joe Jackson Band played a monthlong tour from October to November in the U.K., followed by a month in Europe from November to December, after which it split up, according to Jackson because Houghton no longer wanted to tour. Sanford became a session musician, while Maby stuck with Jackson.
Jackson, in ill health following more than two years of continual touring, retreated to his family home, where he became increasingly immersed in the jump blues of 1940s star Louis Jordan. He organized a new band in the style of Jordan’s Tympany 5 featuring three horn players (Pete Thomas on alto saxophone, Raul Oliveria on trumpet, and David Bitelli on tenor saxophone and clarinet) along with pianist Nick Weldon and drummer Larry Tolfree, plus Maby and Jackson himself, who played vibes and sang. The group, dubbed Joe Jackson’s Jumpin’ Jive, played a collection of swing and jump blues standards such as “Jumpin’ with Symphony Sid,” “Is You Is or Is You Ain’t My Baby,” and “Tuxedo Junction.” The resulting Joe Jackson’s Jumpin’ Jive LP, released in June 1981, was a hit in Britain, where it reached the Top 20. In the U.S., the album was not so much 35 years behind the times as 15 years ahead of them; had it appeared in the mid-'90s, it would have fit right in with releases by the Brian Setzer Orchestra and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy as part of the neo-swing movement. As it was, America circa 1981 was baffled, but Jackson’s core audience was sufficiently curious to push the album into the Top 50 while he toured the country with the band in July in between British dates in June and from August to September.
Jackson went through more personal changes over the next year. He and his wife divorced, and he moved to New York City, where, true to form, he began to immerse himself in new musical genres, particularly attracted to salsa and the classic songwriting styles of Gershwin and Cole Porter. The result was Night and Day, released in June 1982, Jackson’s first album to put his keyboard playing at the center of his music, with percussionist Sue Hadjopoulas also given prominence. Jackson seemed to have abandoned new wave rock for a catchy pop-jazz-salsa-dance hybrid, and he backed the release with a yearlong world tour as A&M put considerable promotional muscle behind the LP. “Steppin’ Out” became a multi-format hit, earning airplay on album-oriented rock (AOR) radio before spreading to the pop and adult contemporary charts, placing in the Top Ten all around and eventually earning Grammy nominations for Record of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Performance, Male. With that stimulus, the album reached the Top Ten and went gold, spawning a second Top 20 single in “Breaking Us in Two.”
Jackson finished the Night and Day tour in May 1983. He had been asked to contribute a song to Mike’s Murder, a film written and directed by James Bridges (The China Syndrome, Urban Cowboy) and starring Debra Winger (Urban Cowboy, An Officer and a Gentleman). He ended up writing both a handful of songs and a few instrumental pieces that were released on a soundtrack album in September. Unfortunately, the film itself was not ready for release then, since it was the subject of a dispute between Bridges and the movie studio that had financed it, the result being reshooting and re-editing, such that the film did not open until March 1984, by which time it had a score by John Barry and only a little of Jackson’s music remaining, and then it earned only one million dollars during a few weeks of theatrical showings, making it a disastrous flop. The orphaned soundtrack album, however, managed to get into the Top 100 and even spawned a chart single in the Jackson composition “Memphis,” while “Breakdown” earned a Grammy nomination for Best Pop Instrumental Performance.
Jackson returned to the studio and emerged in March 1984 with Body & Soul, an album with a cover photograph showing him clutching a saxophone in the style of the 1950s LP covers of Blue Note Records. The disc inside was a follow-up to Night and Day in style, however, with a bit more of an R&B tilt, and it was another commercial success, if a more modest one, reaching the Top 20 and spawning a Top 20 single in “You Can’t Get What You Want (Till You Know What You Want).” After the four-month Body & Soul world tour concluded in July 1984, Jackson retreated. The tour had been, he later wrote, “the hardest I ever did; it came too soon after the last one, and by the end of it I was so burned out I swore I’d never tour again.” He re-emerged after 18 months in January 1986 for a series of live recording sessions at the Roundabout Theatre in New York conducted for his next album. Audiences were invited to attend, but instructed to hold their applause as the performances were cut direct to a two-track tape recorder. The resulting album, Big World, released in March, had a one-hour running time, making it an ideal length for the new CD format, though it had to be pressed on two LPs with the second side of the second LP left blank. Press reaction to these two aspects of the album tended to overshadow consideration of the material, which ranged from politically charged rockers like “Right or Wrong,” a direct challenge to the Reagan administration, to heartfelt ballads like “Home Town,” a reflection on memory and loss. Jackson undertook another extensive tour lasting from May to December (one he reported enjoying much more than the last one), and the album spent six months in the charts, but only peaked in the Top 40.
In the winter of 1985, Jackson had been commissioned to write a 20-minute score for a Japanese film, Shijin No Ie (House of the Poet), and the orchestral piece was recorded with the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra. He adapted it into “Symphony in One Movement” and added a few other instrumental pieces to create his next album, Will Power, his first disc to reflect his classical background. A&M gave the LP a surprising promotional push that included releasing the title track as a single, and Jackson fans were sufficiently intrigued to push the album into the lower reaches of the pop chart upon its release in April 1987. But his increasing desire to include classical elements in his popular work and to issue outright “serious” compositions tended to put him in a no man’s land where reviewers were concerned, since rock critics were for the most part incapable of judging such works and preferred that he stick to rock-based music, while classical critics simply ignored him. Had they been paying attention, however, they might not have approved of what they heard, anyway. An unrepentant Beethoven fan, Jackson had disliked his exposure to serial music and other contemporary trends in classical music when he encountered them in college; his serious compositions tended to reflect his taste for conventional concert music of the romantic and classical periods.
While staying off the road, Jackson had two albums in release in 1988. In May, he issued the double-disc set Live 1980/86, chronicling his tours over the years. It reached the Top 100. In August came his swing-styled soundtrack to the Francis Ford Coppola film Tucker: The Man and His Dream, an effort that probably would have attracted more attention if the film had been more successful (it grossed less than $20 million). Nevertheless, the album earned a Grammy nomination for Best Album of Original Instrumental Background Score Written for a Motion Picture or TV. His next LP, released in April 1989, was Blaze of Glory, another modest seller with a peak only in the Top 100 despite radio play for the single “Nineteen Forever.” Jackson, who felt the album was one of his best efforts and toured to support it with an 11-piece band in the U.S. and Europe from June to November, was disappointed with both the commercial reaction and his record company’s lack of support. He parted ways with A&M, which promptly released the 1990 compilation Steppin’ Out: The Very Best of Joe Jackson, a Top Ten hit in the U.K.
Jackson wrote his third movie score for 1991’s Queens Logic; no soundtrack album was issued. Signing to Virgin Records, he released his next album, Laughter & Lust, in April 1991. Here, he expressed some of his frustration with the record business in the appropriately catchy, '60s-styled “Hit Single,” while the socially conscious “Obvious Song” and a percussion-filled cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Oh Well” attracted radio attention. But the album continued his gradual sales decline, failing to reach the Top 100 in the U.S. Another world tour stretched from May to September, after which Jackson was not heard from on record for three years. In the interim, he wrote music for two movies, the interactive film I’m Your Man (1992) and the feature Three of Hearts (1993), neither of which produced soundtrack albums featuring his music. He reappeared in record stores in October 1994 with Night Music, a low-key album that attempted to fuse his pop and classical styles, including instrumentals and guest vocals by Máire Brennan of Clannad. The album, which did not chart, was supported with a world tour that ran from November to May 1995. After it, Jackson left Virgin and signed to Sony Classical, a label more accepting of his musical ambitions. In September 1997, it released Heaven & Hell, a song cycle depicting the seven deadly sins, billed to Joe Jackson & Friends; the friends included such guest vocalists as folk-pop singers Jane Siberry and Suzanne Vega and opera singer Dawn Upshaw. The album reached number three in Billboard’s Classical Crossover chart. A tour ran from November to April 1998.
Jackson worked on two projects in the late '90s, both of which appeared in October 1999. Sony Classical issued his Symphony No. 1, which was played not by an orchestra, but by a band of jazz and rock musicians including guitarist Steve Vai and trumpeter Terence Blanchard, and it won the 2000 Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Album. And publishers Public Affairs came out with Jackson’s book, A Cure for Gravity: A Musical Pilgrimage, in which he wrote about his love of all kinds of music and recounted his life from his birth up to the point of his emergence as a public figure in the late '70s. Bringing his story up to date, he wrote, “So I’m still making music, no longer a pop star – if I ever really was – but just a composer, which is what I wanted to be in the first place.”
Having released only semi-classical works on his last three recordings, Jackson was thought to have abandoned pop/rock music completely, but that proved not to be true. The early years of the 21st century found him in a flurry of activity, much of it returning him to the pop music realm. In June 2000, Sony Classical, through Jackson’s imprint, Manticore, issued Summer in the City: Live in New York, an album drawn from an August 1999 concert that featured him playing piano and singing, backed only by Maby and drummer Gary Burke, performing some of his old songs along with covers of tunes by the Lovin’ Spoonful, Duke Ellington, and the Beatles, among others. Four months later came Night and Day II, a new set of songs in the spirit of his most popular recording. Touring to promote the album in Europe and North America from November to April 2001, Jackson recorded the concert CD Two Rainy Nights: Live in the Northwest (The Official Bootleg), released in January 2002 on his own Great Big Island label through (The album was reissued to retail by Koch in 2004.) Later in 2002, Jackson surprised longtime fans by reuniting with the original members of the Joe Jackson Band, Graham Maby, Gary Sanford, and Dave Houghton, to record a new studio album, Volume 4 (the first three volumes having been Look Sharp!, I’m the Man, and Beat Crazy), released by Restless/Rykodisc in March 2003, and to embark on a world tour running through September 2003 that resulted in the live album Afterlife, issued in March 2004. As he made television appearances to promote the latter, he insisted that the reunion had been a one-time thing. Meanwhile, his recording of “Steppin’ Out” was being used in a television commercial for Lincoln Mercury automobiles, and he was preparing to score his next film, The Greatest Game Ever Played, for a 2005 release. Jackson released a new studio album, Rain, in 2008, followed by 2011’s Live Music: Europe 2010, which was recorded live in Europe during his 2010 Joe Jackson Trio tour with Dave Houghton and Graham Maby.
In 2012, Jackson released the Duke Ellington tribute album The Duke. Though a long-avowed fan of the legendary jazz pianist and bandleader, Jackson didn’t want his tribute to follow the standard reverent approach, and instead he filtered these timeless compositions through various unexpected rhythms, arrangements, and musical pairings, including a duet with punk icon Iggy Pop on “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing).” The year 2015 brought another ambitious project from Jackson; the album Fast Forward found him recording in four cities with four different sets of musicians, with each capturing a different aspect of the songwriter’s musical personality. As part of Record Store Day in 2017, Jackson released the single “Fools in Love” backed by “Music to Watch Girls By,” which were unreleased live recordings with his trio from 2010. ~ William Ruhlmann……~

In a lot of ways, the 1980s were a strange decade. Speaking specifically to the musical output there was a lot to like, but it was dominated by fads and failed experiments. As someone who had limited access to music other than what my parents played or what popular radio had to offer, the 80s were a kind of dark period for me until much later in life. But during those dark times some names were always part of the conversation, even if they just skirted around the fringe. One of those names was Joe Jackson. 

I feel like I’ve always known Jackson’s name. I knew that he had some radio hits but I absolutely could not name one of them. I knew he had a few hit records, one was Look Sharp, the other had a white and blue cover, maybe with a drawing of a piano or something on it. This is about as much as I knew about Joe Jackson. In my pursuit to fill in some holes in my fabric of music information I decided it was time to see what Joe Jackson was all about. 


You might remember in May I started looking at albums and artists that people have recommended to me over the years or that are considered essential listening. I established a few key rules for myself: I have to listen to the album at least three times through before writing anything, and I cannot research the record or artist before writing. I picked up a dollar bin copy of Joe Jackson’s Body and Soul LP, hoping it would be representative of his work. That being said, one of the only things I remember people telling me about Joe Jackson is that each album is pretty different from the others. I also remember hearing that Body and Soul had some sort of jazz theme to it. When seeing the cover’s replication of a classic Blue Note LP this seemed likely to be true. 

The first few songs of the record made me cringe a bit as they are loaded with 80s pop hooks that I couldn’t get into much then and haven’t warmed up to in the last 25 years. As the record progressed, I could at least appreciate Jackson’s writing ability. Overall, the first listen left me pretty flat. The next two times through, things started to blossom a bit. There is a jazz influence here; however, it is the smooth jazz sound of the 80s that permeates these songs, not the mid-century sound implied by the album cover. The second track “Cha Cha Loco” has become my favorite song on the record. There is a bit of a cha-cha sound, as the title indicates, but there is an 80s pop vibe as well. The two really shouldn’t work at all but Jackson has crafted this song in such a way that makes the two seem like a natural match. 

The big radio hit that I remember is “You Can’t Get What You Want (Till You Know What You Want)” and I can safely say I still really don’t like this song. The 80s meets the worst of smooth 80s sax and isn’t even ironically good. I was pretty excited when I recognized “Be My Number Two,” but that excitement faded when I realized it’s a staple at my dentist’s office. As the record wound down for the last time, I read through the liner notes and discovered that Joe Jackson and producer David Kershenbaum wanted to make this album differently than a lot of records being made in the mid-80s. They wanted to use more traditional technology and gear, find a great room to record in rather than a stuffy modern studio….any of this sounding familiar? While the trend at the time was for heavy production, digital recording and lots of effects and overdubs, Joe Jackson wanted to get back to a classic style of recording. With that in mind, I would call Body and Soul a success. 

Ok, so after spending some time with this record I can’t say I’m a Joe Jackson fan. I can see why he would appeal to a lot of people. He is a solid songwriter, has a voice that can hold its own against most, and is not afraid to try new things. One thing I do really like about him is how he manages to take the 80s pop sound and make it a lot more interesting than most of his contemporaries, and that alone makes him worth knowing…..knox rd…….~ 


A chameleon. A classically trained race musician. A bridge builder. Yes, when Joe Jackson blended pure, unfiltered jazz with some of the finest songs from the history of pop music in 1984 with his sublime Body and Soul , every true music lover knew that he had only one thing to do: hurry to the record store. 
Not surprising: Jackson, together with Elvis Costello and Graham Parker, has been labeled as one of the most talented angry young men in the late seventies . That loft thinking, however, the gentlemen critics were soon put in the fridge. Joe Jackson has practically swallowed all the musical water - he has even recorded some classic albums. Not surprising, given Jackson's conservatory background. 
At the age of eleven, Jackson, born in 1954, began to follow violin lessons, initially to be able to miss the gym classes. Soon the young Jackson exchanges the violin for piano, he exchanges classical music for jazz and rock and learns to compose - at the age of sixteen he performs in the local bars of Portsmouth, sometimes as a permanent pianist, sometimes as group member of local bands. 

But Jackson had to invent himself. And so that scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Music in London when he was eighteen is more than welcome. Jackson, eternally a bit of a sleeper, graduates as a composer, but not in piano, but in violin and percussion. "A struggling rock songwriter and keyboardist with a degree in percussion, it was too ridiculous." After that, a whole series of performances and a much needed first demo, which ends up in a favorable wind on the desk of A & M Records manager David Kershenbaum, will follow. The rest is history. All from debut albums Look Sharp and I'm The Man , both from 1979, and successor Beat Crazy(1980) you feel that Jackson is something special, a composer pur sang that can sometimes get razor sharp from the corner. But Joe Jackson is also synonymous with versatile, and so he jumps with Jumpin Jive (1981) on old swing, blues and jazz compositions, while the follow-up Night & Day (1982) mostly beckons to Latin American salsa. But it is not until he turns to classical jazz with Body and Soul in 1984 that all pieces of the puzzle fall fully in place. 

Because let's face it: from the opening track "The Verdict", Jackson grabs you by your scruff, holds the unsuspecting listener for an entire album with some of the most beautiful melodies that ever crept out of someone's pen. Heavy, bombastic brass instruments combine seamlessly with thunderous drums, a sparing dash of piano and Jackson's voice into a threatening cocktail that we still have not recovered from all those years. 'Cha Cha Loco' may not be more than a little spielerei with the chachacha, do not forget those masterly brass players, that aptly coined backing vocals and the finger-cutting vocals of Jackson. 

But the real goose bumps still have to come. "Not Here, Not Now" is therefore a chillingly beautiful ode to nothing less than life and love itself. The song is, due to its very heavy subject, the sophisticated variety between quiet strophes, choruses that pull out all the stops and another sublime melody that Jackson seems to have a patent on, maybe a bit heavy on the stomach, so what ? You do not always order the lightest meal at restaurant? What's more, Jackson was smart enough at the time for his pièce de résistanceto give a sophisticated sequence, and so the last two songs from the A-side - single "You can not get what you want" and last minute "Go for it" - even a lame dance again, we dare a camel to bet on. Those bass that swing the pan! That masterly symbiosis between percussion and brass players! That total sound! 

In "Loisada", the first song on the B-side, it begins to dawn on the listener: Jackson has to hide somewhere a teletime machine with which he secretly smuggled some jazz originals from the first half of the 20th century into the eighties and then immersed in his idiom. Just to say that the instrumental number is both jazz and vintageJackson is. And then we have not mentioned the singles "Happy Ending" and "Be My Number Two", two songs where lesser gods would have an arm for auction. Singer Elaine Caswell forms the bow in a beautiful duet with Jackson, which in itself is a great song: "Happy Ending" as an up-tempo apology for films that end well. "Be My Number Two" is then a love song that is none, a world-class song in which Jackson once again proves what kind of a gifted songwriter he is. 

When the instrumental, jazzy song "Heart of Ice" blares through the speakers, you have a bit of a music lover long since your conclusion ready: jazz and pop music in this masterly record not a marriage of convenience, no: they form a love loving couple but can not stay away from each other. Body and Soul is one of the absolute highlights of Jackson's career and a record whose importance can not be described with a pen: never before had a pop artist plucked so richly from a genre that it differs completely from pop music ontologically. Jackson would still perform twice heavy in the live albums Big World (1986) and Live 1980/86(1988), but then, at least for his studio plates, the fat of the soup. Tip of the house: do not be tempted by the endless stream of Jackson compilations (he hates it himself), go for the real thing and buy this Body and Soul . Do you bet that even if you get Spanish choked with jazz, your week can not go wrong?....by...Filip Hermans...~


Musicians: 
Michael Morreale – trumpet and flugelhorn 
Tony Aiello – saxes and flute 
Vinnie Zummo – guitar 
Ed Roynsedal – piano, keyboards, violin 
Graham Maby – bass 
Gary Burke – drums 
Elaine Caswell and Ellen Foley – vocals 
Joe Jackson – vocals, piano, and sax 




Tracklist

A1 The Verdict 5:31
A2 Cha Cha Loco 4:47
A3 Not Here, Not Now 5:27
A4 You Can't Get What You Want (Till You Know What You Want) 4:50
A5 Go For It 4:18
B1 Loisaida 5:33
B2 Happy Ending 3:39
B3 Be My Number Two 4:18
B4 Heart Of Ice 6:53


watch
Arms & Leg (Joe Jackson) "Heat Of The Night- Good Times" 1976 single + "Janie - She’ll Surprise You" 1976 single + “Is There Anymore Wine - She’ll Surprise You” 1977 single UK Pop Rock



watch…..
Joe Jackson ‎" Look Sharp!“ 1979 UK New Wave 

No comments:

Post a comment

my best sites & channels

gramophone

gramophone

volume

volume

Fuzz

Fuzz

Analogue

Analogue

Akai

Akai

vinyl

vinyl

Cassette Deck

Cassette Deck

Music

Music

Hi`s Master`s Voice

Hi`s Master`s Voice

sound

sound

music forever

music forever

“A Revolutionary New Triumph in Tape” 1958

“A Revolutionary New Triumph in Tape” 1958

Crazy with music

Crazy with music

RCA Victor - Living Stereo 1958

RCA Victor - Living Stereo 1958

vinyl

vinyl

I Love Rock n` Roll

I Love Rock n` Roll

Music

Music

sound

sound

volume

volume

no music no life

no music no life

love music

love music

Revolver Maps

Iggy Pop

Iggy Pop

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

Suzi Quatro

Suzi Quatro

Jerry Garcia

Jerry Garcia
“Dear Mr. Fantasy, play us a tune”

The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones

Captain Beefheart

Captain Beefheart

Pink Floyd Live In Pompeii 1972

Pink Floyd Live In Pompeii 1972

Grateful Dead

Grateful Dead

Iggy & The Stooges

Iggy & The Stooges

Alvin Lee

Alvin Lee

Janis Joplin

Janis Joplin

Nico & Velvet Underground

Nico & Velvet Underground

That 70`s show

That 70`s show

Penny Lane 1967

Penny Lane 1967

Ummagumma 1969

Ummagumma 1969

Jimi Hendrix

Jimi Hendrix

Joe Cocker

Joe Cocker
Joe Cocker at Woodstock 1969

Roger Waters

Roger Waters

Donovan dancing at Monterey 1967

Donovan dancing at Monterey 1967
Donovan at Monterey Pop Festival 1967

13th Floor Elevators

13th Floor Elevators

Geezer Butler Black Sabbath

Geezer Butler  Black Sabbath

Ride The Wind

Ride The Wind

Jimi at Monterey Pop Festival 1967

Jimi at Monterey Pop Festival 1967

Psychedelicsex kicks

Psychedelicsex kicks
this trip is for real!

Nico with Velvet

Nico with Velvet

Lemmy

Lemmy

Jimi Hendrix Experience

Jimi Hendrix Experience

DO IT! : Scenarios of the Revolution by Jerry Rubin (1970)

DO IT! : Scenarios of the Revolution by Jerry Rubin (1970)

Ian Curtis of Joy Division

Ian Curtis of Joy Division

Punks not Dead

Punks not Dead

Ginger Baker

Ginger Baker

Country Joe & the Fish Woodstock 1969

Country Joe & the Fish Woodstock 1969

Sid Vicious

Sid Vicious

Hippie

Hippie

Bob Marley

Bob Marley

Jimmy Page

Jimmy Page

John Lennon

John Lennon

Jimi Hendrix performing “Purple Haze” at Woodstock Festival, 1969.

Jimi Hendrix performing “Purple Haze” at Woodstock Festival, 1969.

John Lord

John Lord

Pop Art

Pop Art

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd

Mountain Woodstock 1969

Mountain Woodstock  1969

The Velvet Underground

The Velvet Underground

The Trip

The Trip

Rock n' Roll

Rock n' Roll

Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin

Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd

Mike Bloomfield - Monterey 1967

Mike Bloomfield - Monterey 1967

The Beatles Abbey Road

The Beatles Abbey Road

Janis Joplin Festival Express

Janis Joplin   Festival Express

Arriving at Woodstock, 1969

Arriving at Woodstock, 1969

Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd

Velvet Underground & Nico Verve Records V-5008 1967

Velvet Underground & Nico Verve Records V-5008 1967

Pompeii 1972

Pompeii 1972

Captain Beefheart

Captain Beefheart

Acid Test

Acid Test

Acid Test

Acid Test

Jimi Hendrix Woodstock 1969

Jimi Hendrix Woodstock 1969

Grateful Dead

Grateful Dead