Craig Chaquico - Panorama - The Best of Craig Chaquico (2000)

Posted By: elcangrejo

Craig Chaquico - Panorama - The Best of Craig Chaquico (2000)
mp3 @ 192 Kb. | 98 Mb | New Age

When former Jefferson Starship guitarist Craig Chaquico (cha-KEY-so) reinvented himself as a pop instrumentalist in 1993 (the year he released Acoustic Highway, his solo debut), he brought the still-fledgling contemporary instrumental genre one of its freshest sounds in years. Chaquico blended skillful pop-rock-blues songcraft with studio savvy to produce a lush, layered acoustic sound so full-bodied that at times he seemed to be leading a guitar choir. His initial hit, the title track from that first disc (and the concluding piece on this best-of package), remains one of the most cheerfully infectious tunes in this category. Other selections on Panorama, a retrospective that samples his first five recordings, also capture the hip, lyrical joyfulness of Chaquico's early work ("Native Tongue," "Sacred Ground," "Return of the Eagle"), where new melodic ideas might pop up at any point in the composition. Elements of smooth jazz began surfacing on his third disc, A Thousand Pictures, and that trend has persisted ever since, draining some of the organic, free-spirited spark from Chaquico's music. The two new tunes found on this disc, "Café Carnival" (a Latin big-band production) and "Beyond Words," suggest that pattern still prevails, and while Chaquico can make smooth jazz sound pretty good (try "Sweet Talk"), that easy-listening glaze is an unnecessary crutch for such an imaginative player. Nevertheless, Panorama is an attractive package; just a touch too sweet in places. --Terry Wood


1. Native Tongue
2. Sacred Ground
3. Forbidden Love
4. Gathering Of The Tribes
5. Cafe Carnival
6. Return Of The Eagle
7. Gypsy Nights
8. Lights Out San Francisco
9. Beyond Words
10. Blue Universe
11. Sweet Talk
12. Autumn Blue
13. Find Your Way Back
14. Acoustic Highway

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