Monday, June 30, 2014

"Be Mine (Tonight)" by Grover Washington, Jr.

Song#:  0902
Date:  02/06/1982
Debut:  95
Peak:  92
Weeks:  4
Genre:  Smooth Jazz

Pop Bits:  Washington had a big hit the previous year with "Just the Two of Us" (#2, vocals by Bill Withers) from his Grammy-winning "Winelight" album. He continued his jazz/R&B/pop formula with his follow-up album "Come Morning." For this first single, he teamed with vocalist Grady Tate, but the results were nowhere near as successful as "Just the Two of Us." The minor few weeks on the chart didn't help the album, which only peaked at #28. It did eventually go gold and hit #1 on the jazz chart, but couldn't muster a showing at R&B. This would be Washington's last single to reach the pop chart.

ReduxReview:  Well, this certainly ain't no "Just the Two of Us." It doesn't even come close. I'm actually surprised it even got any attention at pop. Of course, the sax work and Tate's voice are great, but the song just fizzles. The first part of the song is a quiet, smooth R&B-ish groove, but then it moves into a "funky" instrumental section that kind of reminds me of the theme from "Barney Miller." It just doesn't fit. Add in uninspired lyrics and this doctor's office lite-jazz tune is almost cringe inducing.

ReduxRating:  3/10

Trivia:  Jazz musician Grady Tate was mainly known for his drumming but also used his baritone voice to great effect on many recordings. In addition to being a sideman for some of the most famous names in jazz, Tate was also the house drummer on "The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson" for a six-year stint. Kids who grew up in the 70s might recognize his voice from a couple of Multiplication Rock songs - "I Got Six" and "Naughty Number Nine."


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