His debut album, “Journey To The Urge Within” in 1987, was the first serious jazz album ever to make the British Top 40, notching up sales to qualify for a silver disc.
As an artist always looking to work outside of and across established musical genres, it is easier to list the musicians and artists he hasn’t worked with, but now in 2017 Courtney releases brand new music featuring another British music legend of equal repute, his Freestyle Records label mate and an artist also honoured for his own creative endeavours; Omar Lyefook M.B.E.
Both tracks of this single are taken from Courtneys’ forthcoming album “Black Notes From The Deep” – the 19th of his stellar career. The exciting and fresh interpretation of Herbie Hancock’s “Butterfly” demonstrates straight away that this is a dream team combination. With Alec Dankworth laying down the bass, Rod Young‘s drumming underpinning the groove, the song also gives the outstanding keyboards of Robert Mitchell space to stretch out – Omar’s fantastic vocal performance rides sweetly on top of the dreamy backing vocals of Charleen Hamilton – and of course Courtney’s flowing, imaginative and creative solo perfects this modern version of a much loved classic.
“Rules” is a brand new, collaborative composition by Courtney & Omar – the punchy drums and bass line patterns hints simultaneously at classic jazz and funkier club-centric sounds. Courtney cooks on tenor saxophone and also the organ – whilst Omar marinades the super catchy melody with that unmistakable voice.
As an introduction to the forthcoming album “Black Notes From The Deep” this single points the way to what two British legends, both exemplary in their own right – can come up with when joining forces.
“Butterfly / Rules”
out 1 September
Courtney Pine ft Omar – Butterfly