Leon Ware - Kiss in the Sand (2005)

Leon Ware
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If Leon Ware is known to many as the "Sensual Minister," then his new disc, A Kiss In The Sand, is yet another chapter in his aural bible.  Mixing elements of R&B with Brazilian jazz, he has created an hour-long mood piece, an album specifically aimed for late night listening by lovers.  Ware's underrated tenor voice is at a near whisper for much of the disc, as he moves through a series of ethereal pieces.

If Leon Ware is known to many as the "Sensual Minister," then his new disc, A Kiss In The Sand, is yet another chapter in his aural bible.  Mixing elements of R&B with Brazilian jazz, he has created an hour-long mood piece, an album specifically aimed for late night listening by lovers.  Ware's underrated tenor voice is at a near whisper for much of the disc, as he moves through a series of ethereal pieces.  And his nimble vocal performance on songs like the midtempo "Away" and the beautiful, jazzy ballad "I'm Yours" certainly belie his age (65).  The restrained playing by guitarist Sandro Albert, bass guitarist Victor Bailey, percussionist Cassio Duarte, drummer Jimmy Branly and keyboardist Renato Neto, provide a lovely backdrop for Ware's melodic set and help create the overall aura of the disc.  There is a gentle sameness to many of the tunes that would make A Kiss In The Sand less desirable for active, daytime listening.  But this album was meant to be played at midnight (maybe 11:00 for those of you with young kids), and beautifully accomplishes its purpose of transporting lovers to a romantic, warm Brazilian beach.  Recommended.

By Chris Rizik

 

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