Let's Stay Together
Love and Happiness
Knowing That We Were Meant for Each Other
Jamaica-born keyboardist Monty Alexander has famously made a career out of combining lilting reggae “riddems” with the harmonic and extemporaneous complexity of jazz. Here on electric piano, Alexander was joined for the first time (of what would be many) in 1974 by fellow countryman Ernest Ranglin on guitar. Things start on the good foot with a slinky version of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” and finish with a strident-but-earthy calypso version of “Limbo.” In between, it’s hard to miss Alexander’s much-sampled “Love and Happiness” (another Green classic), which is as about as close to a perfect jazz-reggae slow jam as one's likely to find. Peppier is “Knowing That We Were Meant for Each Other,” with Alexander’s best soloing on the album, while “Yellow Bird” is a real highlight for Ranglin. Now available digitally for the first time after being a prize for any crate-digger, the album gets a fresh remixing that ensures that the warm analog feel is perfectly translated into the digital realm.