March 12, 2018. At age 75, Dr. Lonnie Smith still knows how to party. His new release, All In My Mind, was recorded last summer at his birthday celebration at The Jazz Standard in New York City. Guitarist Jonathan Kreisberg and drummer Johnathan Blake make this a trio record to remember.
Smith, a 2017 NEA Jazz Master, tends to shake things up with his song selection, and this live album is no exception. All In My Mind kicks off with an energetic rendition of Wayne Shorter’s “Juju.” A few tracks in, you’d never know Paul Simon’s “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” isn’t a jazz composition.
There’s a guest drummer featured on Simon’s hit (it was a party, after all); Joe Dyson wanted in on the fun. Vocalist Alicia Olatuja joined in on the Smith original “All In My Mind.”
Always knowing how to please a crowd, the good Doctor was sure to put his unique spin on some true jazz classics like “On A Misty Night” and “Up Jumped Spring.” Expertly captured, the spirit of the birthday celebration is reflected in the music, while not sounding overtly “live.”