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Release Date:
August 14, 2012

Reviewed by:
Harvey Cline

Bassist Julian Vaughn releases eleven new cuts that have a lot of people talking. Vaughn stays out front through out and has brought in some wonderful musicians including Darren Rahn and Marcus Anderson for the project. The opening number is one that is written by himself and Rahn entitled “On Your Feet.” It is a great way to start the CD off and is very infectious from the start. Julian takes over just after the intro and leads the way with a lot of interesting melody as well as funky riffs. Add in the tenor of Rahn and you can see why they called this one what they did. It doesn’t stop on the next one either. The Vaughn/Rahn penned “J’s Jammin” picks right up where the opener left off. Julian’s bass here is a little more pronounced in the passages and I like where he takes it. The choruses are lifted by the two writers, and really make this another good one. “Ju Ju’s Groove” brings the two together again along with the production and key work of Nicholas Cole. They play along together on this one beautifully. The background claps add depth as this one moves along a little slower than the first two. Julian stretches a little more on this one, and comes up with some really nice riffs. Rahn adds in the tenor towards the end as they all take it out together.

“The Thought of You” is a little more laid back in its approach and somewhat introspective. Cole graces the piano and the two youngsters play well together although Julian stretches it out for a nice solo as well. Tobbi White-Darks introduces the beginning of the title track and can be heard on vocals through out. This one struts almost from the beginning and gets along at a nice pace. The bass here keeps it lively and is a good place for Rahn’s sax again. Marcus Anderson is featured on “I’ll Do It” as they slow down the pace somewhat. The added vocals of Anthony Saunders are given as another instrument on the chorus. I like how they use it and add layers. One of my favorites has to be “Rock Steady.”  This Babyface classic gets up and moves right away. Vaughn’s bass is all over the melody from the beginning as he takes it to new heights. Add in the dynamic sax of Rahn once again and you have a real show stopper. This will be a fun one on the road. They slow it down again for “No Matter” which features the sax of Marcus Anderson. Vaughn’s bass here serves more of a background until the two of them interplay with each other. Anderson’s sax really shines here and I love the intensity that he brings to this one. The two of them hook up really well on this one.

“Right On Time” is a snappy little number that features Rahn once more. Vaughn’s bass sounds clear here, and he’s out front most of the way. I like what he does here and I think you will too. This one has a great finale to it as it changes directions and plays it up with Rahn. He finishes the project with “Always Be Together” which features keyboardist Nicholas Cole again. It’s a nice one to finish the project on and Cole adds a lot with his keys.

Comparisons of this up and comer to Wayman Tisdale will be forthcoming. I hear a lot of his influences here, and that’s not a bad thing. He notes both he and Marcus Miller as influences. The youngster has surrounded himself with some really good young talent here and keeps the mix both lively and fresh. You’ll be hearing a lot more from him in the future for sure. This really could be a Breakthrough release for this Kansas City native, and I’d recommend you find a copy soon.