Michael Franks – The Art of Tea

xxxxx

  • Our first listing for Michael Franks “debut”, and with Triple Triple sonic grades it just does not get any better than this
  • This copy is bigger, richer and more extended up high and down low than any copy we have ever played – wow!
  • According to the liner notes this album was recorded live in the studio – top engineering too
  • Allmusic 4 Stars: “This winning combination of players, styles, singing, and songwriting would be reshuffled and refined over the years, but perhaps with no finer results than on this official major label debut.”

No other copy in our shootout could hold a candle to the sound of this original pressing!

Best Practices

If you have five or ten copies of a record and play them over and over against each other, the process itself teaches you what’s right and what’s wrong with the sound of the album. Once your ears are completely tuned to what the best pressings do well that the others do not do as well, using a few specific passages of music, it will quickly become obvious how well any given pressing reproduces those passages.

The process is simple enough. First you go deep into the sound. There you find something special, something you can’t find on most copies. Now, with the hard-won knowledge of precisely what to listen for, you are perfectly positioned to critique any and all pressings that come your way.

Top Players

Keyboards – Joe Sample
Guitar – Larry Carlton
Alto Sax – Dave Sanborn
Drums – John Guerin
Bass – Wilton Felder
Congas – Jerry Seinholtz
String arrangement – Nick De Caro
Tenor saxophone – Michael Brecker
Vibraphone – Larry Bunker

TRACK LISTING

Side One

Nightmoves
Eggplant
Monkey See-Monkey Do
St. Elmo’s Fire
I Don’t Know Why I’m So Happy I’m Sad

Side Two

Jive
Popsicle Toes
Sometimes I Just Forget To Smile
Mr. Blue

AMG  Review

After his debut on the tiny Brut Records (a short-lived record label of the famous cologne company), Michael Franks established both his unique sound and a recording process he has continued throughout his career. Primarily a jazz artist, Franks crossed over to pop and rock fans through heavy FM airplay beginning with The Art of Tea.

Sensually suggestive and playful tracks, such as “Popsicle Toes” and “Eggplant” contain sly wordplay and almost Henry Mancini-like, breezy jazz-pop. Employing a similar approach as Steely Dan did with its music, Franks’ singing and songwriting formed the basis of a sound rooted in the support of top-notch musicians, many of whom were the hottest studio jazz players on the scene.

Here, the killer rhythm section of drummer John Guerin and bassist Wilton Felder is augmented by horn pros Michael Brecker and David Sanborn, with Franks and Larry Carlton handling all the guitar work. This winning combination of players, styles, singing, and songwriting would be reshuffled and refined over the years, but perhaps with no finer results than on this official major label debut.

Leave a Reply