Alexander Boynton Jr. | Doo Bee Doo Bop

Alexander Boynton Jr. | Doo Bee Doo Bop
By Randy Holmes

This extremely talented bassist hailing from Chattanooga, Tennessee, now residing in Canada, self released a fine 12 song collection of Smooth Jazz numbers that incorporates elements of Latin, R&B, Funk and "Slow Jams". Every, and I do mean, EVERY, cut on here is a winner. No filler here ladies and gentlemen. Produced by jazz wunderkind, Jeff Lorber, this project features all-star cast of musicians and singers, and they are as follows : Jeff Lorber on keyboards, Rufus guitarist Tony Maiden, drummer Tony Moore, Smooth Jazz trumpet great Rick Braun, session guitar giant Paul Jackson, Jr., venerable session percussionist Lenny Castro, vocalists Phil Perry and Chelsea Nicole, and many other talented musicians.

Opening track, an Alexander Boynton, Jr. original, "Beyond The Gate", features the excellent chops of trumpeter, Miguelito Valdes, along with flute player, Bill Runge. The soothing latin shuffle feel is complemented by Alexander's mellow and laid back bass grooves, the fine percussion work of Lenny Castro and Nick Apivor, the "wah wah'd" guitar work Of Michael Thompson, along with the shared piano work of Jeff Lorber and Dave Pickell. The steady feet work of drummer Gilbert Moreaux keep the tempo well in check with the other players quite nicely. "Kate", features the solo Fender Rhodes chops of album's producer Jeff Lorber. This upbeat and festive track, with funk undertones, feature the great guitar licks of Paul Jackson, Jr., the soulful sax of David Mann, the "in the pocket drumming" of Tony Moore, as well as Alexander's rhythmically dynamic bass playing. David Mann offers up a tasty sax solo as well as his "Mercy Mercy Mercy-esque" fills. "So Long Ago", with it's "slow and simmering" reggae tinged vibe, features the warm muted trumpet tones, along with the soft soothing sound of the Flugelhorn stylings, courtesy of Rick Braun. Accompanying Alexander's, once again, smooth and mellow bass offerings, you'll hear the great electric piano chords and synthesizer fills of Jeff Lorber. Drummer Tony Moore and percussionist Lenny Castro holds it all together by their perfectly timed and skilled performance.

On "Real Live Woman", we're treated by the soaring and pleasing vocal stylings of the fantastic Phil Perry. Chelsea Nicole's soft and seductive background vocal, supports Phil's lead vocal with sheer aural delight. Nicole is one talented singer to be on the lookout for. Alexander's warm, simple and muted performed bass lines is the right musical blend with Jeff Lorber's "lullaby-esque" Fender Rhodes performed chords and drum programmed "shaker" effect. This tune incorporates a great melody and most important, a great performance by all participants. Next, we're taken on a funk trip with the Jeff Lorber penned, "Frisky Boogaloo" {Featuring Jeff Golub}. Alexander throws down a nasty and wicked bass line along with Jeff Lorber's tasty Fender Rhodes chops, as well as Jeff Golub's funky 70's "ching chang" guitar licks and solo. Jeff funk's it up even harder with a head moving synthesizer solo ..... and but of course, the "The Funky Drummer", Tony Moore, lays a "smack down and on the one" performance with his superb stick and feet work. This is a great song that accentuates Alexander's funky and soulful bass playing. Album's title track, "Doo Bee Doo Bop", is another "modus operandi feelicious goodocious" song ! On this bonafide toe tapper, we find Alexander donning the Piccolo Bass (a bass whose strings are tuned an octave or two higher. This bass guitar manipulation was first created by legendary bassist, Stanley Clarke). But what this track percolate is Alexander NOT sounding like Stanley, but sounding like, well, Alexander. The funky guitar licks of Paul Jackson, Jr., and most of the aforementioned rhythm section, along with the backing vocals of Chelsea and "A Train", as Alexander is affectionately known, make this one of many standout tracks on this very impressive recording.

 "Soul Sister" {Featuring Paul Jackson, Jr and Alexander Boynton, Jr.}, is a mid tempo number with Paul and Alexander trading licks on their respective instruments. The keyboard work of Jeff, the timbale/percussion chores of Lenny, the back beat of Tony Moore, the sweet sax of David Mann, the vocal runs of Chelsea Nicole, and rhythm guitar support of Tony Maiden, is one of the many cool and pleasurable sounding songs on this record.  On the Tony! Toni! Tone! R&B classic, "It Never Rains In Southern California" {Short Version}, Alexander, along with Rufus' guitarist Tony Maiden and guitarist Paul Jackson, Jr., perfectly and tonally replicates Rafael Saadiq's lead vocal line to a tee, as they share parts together or individually. Alexander, once again, got to flex his bass solo chops as plucks with harmony and grace as one would expect from him. "Eyes Of A Stranger" {Featuring Chelsea Nicole on Lead Vocal}, is a reggae under toned tune at various sections throughout the song, and features the heartfelt and powerful vocal of this talented singer. In addition to Alexander distinctive bass sound, session veteran, guitarist Michael Thompson lay down Andy Summer of THE POLICE like licks sporadically, along with an amazing rock guitar leaning solo. Jeff classic synthesizer fills, ala his '80's recordings, with the "on the one" kick drum of Tony Moore, gives an even balance to this exceptionally satisfying recording.

Alexander Boynton, Jr. is clearly out to make his mark in, on, and around the music industry, and judging from what I've heard, he's surely on his way. This project is a must have in your CD collection. Go hear for yourselves at to sample all selections of this spectacular piece of work ....To learn more about Alexander himself, please visit his official website!

Happy Listening !

Randy Homes