This record was a good score for $3. It was an even better come up that it was a promo and mint, with a blank back cover. I heard it can go for a little cash, but who cares? This track smokes. Here’s Patrice Rushen with “Kickin’ Back” on Prestige Records from 1975.
Patrice Rushen is one of the world’s top Jazz pianists. From her early Jazz beginnings as a side player and solo artist to moving through the world of film and television scoring with ease, as well as Pop, Soul, Disco, and R & B, Patrice Rushen has played with and along side and recorded with most of the industry’s most well known players. With over 14 solo releases on such labels as Prestige, Arista, and GRP among others, her talent has kept her quite busy for most of her career. Her commercial success has made her name known outside DJ and record collector circles. However, it’s these early recordings like “Kickin’ Back” that speak to me.
This single (purported to be one of the first 12″ released in a batch of original 12″s) is Rushen moving away from the straight forward Jazz she exhibited on Prelusion and moving into Jazz Fusion. This is some lazy day music people, smooth and cool. Rushen (on the clavinet, piano, and synthesizer) stacked her backing band with vet players like Hubert Laws (flute), Lee Ritenour (guitar), Harvey Mason (drums), the horn section of Bohanon, Brashear, Caliman, Dumas and Nash, and finally Charles Meeks (bass). She plays the piano to a similar style of Herbie Hancock (close your eyes this tune has a Headhunters feel), and has kept it even closer to Hancock with Mason who was in the Headhunters, and Meeks who has been a Jazz journeyman in the Blue Note world as well. Patrice moves along at her pace, keeping it cool junior, real cool. This is a great find, a great record, and for me, a period in music I wish never went away. Patrice Rushen announced her exit from the Jazz world with this record, and did it with a bang. She then went on to conquer the music world in many other ways, but to me when she was kickin’ back, she was at her best.