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Articles Home » 1983 Articles » Benson, George - 1983 In Your Eyes
 
Benson, George - 1983 In Your Eyes



ARTIST: Benson, George
ALBUM: In Your Eyes
LABEL: Warner Bros
SERIAL: 23744-1
YEAR: 1983
CD REISSUE: 1999, Warner Bros, 923 744 2 * 2012, Warner (Japan), WPCR-14502

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: George Benson - vocals, guitar * Various guests.

TRACK LISTING: 01 Feel Like Makin' Love * 02 Inside Love (So Personal) * 03 Lady Love Me (One More Time) * 04 Love Will Come Again * 05 In Your Eyes * 06 Never Too Far To Fall * 07 Being With You * 08 Use Me * 09 Late At Night * 10 In Search Of A Dream

WEBLINKS: www.georgebenson.com


Background
Always on the cusp of the West Coast scene during the late 70's and early 80's was legendary jazz guitarist George Benson, who made the transition into easy listening rock with albums like 'Breezin' and 'Give Me the Night'. In fact delve into a player profile in old copies of soccer magazine Shoot! during those times and Benson would always be listed as a favourite music artist, alongside the likes of Phil Collins and Leo Sayer, by players like Alan Brazil or Richard Money. Benson was joined by the likes of David Paich, Greg Philliganes, Nathan East, Steve Porcaro and Lenny Castro here, so veterans of this type of light AOR will know what to expect and not walk away disappointed. Tons of keyboards and AOR melody are the norm, with a heavy pop feel, which never gets in the way.


The Songs
Some felt typically that Benson was betraying his Jazz roots with his melodic direction, much like the criticism aimed at Lionel Ritchie during his boom years of the 80's. Readers here wouldn't be concerned, and Benson's cover of Roberta Flack's 'Feel Like Making Love' is given a West Coast reworking much in the Michael Sembello mould. Things really pick up with a synthesizer solo which wouldn't be out of place on a Nielsen-Pearson album, enough to make anybody sweat. 'Inside Love (So Personal)' is closer to Kool And The Gang than anything else and heavily synthesized, but Benson still adds some jazzy interludes. The albums massive hit was 'Lady Love Me (One More Time)', a pleasant piece of melodic pop, with a hook crafted to perfection. All that's missing is a melodic guitar solo which would be the icing on the cake. Soulful R&B gets a workout on 'Love Will Come Again', but Benson goes for broke with the title track, a huge ballad with MOR leanings in the Jeffrey Osbourne tradition. Benson delivers a laid back instrumental, 'Being With You', which would have satisfied lovers of his timeless jazz pickings and those fond of romantic ecapades under dim lights. 'Use Me' is timeless West Coast, and might have inspired Frank Stallone a year later judging by the keyboard stabs.


In Summary
Remarkably laid back and beautifully handled soft rock from a true master. Benson would soon shift away from this commercial material, but it left a lasting impression, as his work from this time is remembered and statistically recognised as his greatest. I feel he should have let Steve Lukather come in and reel off a selection of solos to liven things up but you can't have everything. Very much a product of its time, but isn't that what most of us here prefer?


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Comments
#1 | jeffrey343 on January 01 1970 01:00:00
A few of these tracks were played a lot on the smooth jazz station here in Dallas until the station went hip hop. This is definitely a good album, but one that I definitely file under smooth jazz. I won't quibble about it being here, though.
#2 | Eric on August 03 2008 14:08:12
Really nice to see this here. I have a soft spot for this kind of thing.
#3 | sabace on August 03 2008 14:24:42
I applaud the fact that you like other types of music, but I think this is out of place here, unless you want to change the name of the site to incorporate all musical tastes. I happen to like pretty much all types of music because in my opinion every genre throws up great artists, but are not necessarily appropriate for here! Anyway I've had my whinge!
#4 | sabace on August 03 2008 14:25:33
by the way I like george benson!
#5 | Eric on August 03 2008 19:14:46
Disagree Sabace. This is a good west coast album and worth hearing much like L. Ritchie, Niteflyte and others. There was a time on American AOR radio when it was not unusual to hear stuff like (and Al Jarreau, Shalamaar a.o's) this sandwiched between Journey and Zep. Those Glory Daze are gone now, but live on here... Well done Alun.
#6 | gdazegod on August 03 2008 21:27:01
All of GB's 'pop/west coast' albums from 1976 through to about this one (1983) are all worthy of mention here. Sorry John, I hear ya, but if this is out of place, then the forthcoming Dragonforce CD review should not be here either. Let the emphasis be on melody, not so much on narrow genres of pop/rock music.
#7 | jeffduran on August 04 2008 03:01:23
Absolutely, I agree George. I am a huge George Benson fan and as someone who has written similar articles on Olivia, Prince and Kenny Rogers -which have been met with similar open jawed remarks. I have one coming on Dionne Warwick and if you don't understand why one doesn't really get what 'AOR/West coast' and Glory-Daze is all about.
#8 | richardb on November 29 2008 20:46:02
This is a great album by a fine musician (he's no slouch on the six string too). Also if I'm not mistaken David Paich co-penned "Lady love me" which gives it extra kudos for Toto fans.

Richard B

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