Najee | Mind Over Matter [Concord Music, 2009]Sometimes making music is all about the mechanics – balancing the melody with the harmony and the rhythm, making sure the tempo is right from the beginning of the song to the end, matching the right vocalist to the story within the lyrics, knowing when to come in with the solos and when to hang back…the litany of technical details to consider in crafting a piece of good music can be endless.
But sometimes the process is much more intuitive and effortless. Sometimes the planets line up and the right groove emerges on its own, and all anyone needs to do – musicians and listeners alike – is get on board and ride into a realm of limitless possibilities.
That intuitive approach is at the heart of Mind Over Matter (HUCD 3156), the new recording by saxophonist Najee set for release on Heads Up International, a division of Concord Music Group. In addition to Najee’s fine balance of songcraft and musicianship, the album also includes songwriting and guest appearances by keyboardist Jeff Lorber and vocalists Eric Benét and Gary Taylor.