Recorded and mastered at sound mountian studio, Massillon, OH.
For David Wells the CD 'More Love More Power' represents a seismic change in the direction of his music. Although this is Wells fifth album his previous releases have demonstrated him to be a trumpet and flugelhorn player with his roots firmly grounded in spiritual songs and hymns. Indeed 'More Love More Power' often dips more than a toe into inspirational waters yet still delivers a number of superb and commercially accessible smooth jazz renderings. Not only that, it's a release that looks like providing Wells with a major smooth jazz radio hit.
Wells injects a delicate restraint into his playing throughout and this is particularly so with his version of the Luther Vandross modern day classic 'Dance With My Father'. The equally familiar 'How Sweet It Is' feels mellow but swings a little too and when he turns to his own composition 'Latin Sunset' his cool tones evoke the kind of images that the title suggests they should. With songs like the title track and 'Unconditional Love', both of which are smooth jazz takes on inspirational mainstays, he captures all the rhythm and melody necessary to make them genuine cross-over contenders but much of the hype surrounding 'More Love More Power' is all about the instant success of the first radio single 'Strawberry Letter 23'.
Despite the fact that a cover of this seminal tune is well overdue, the major radio impact it has had thus far owes much to Wells soulful and passionate approach. Originally from the much acclaimed 1971 album 'Freedom Flight', by the then unknown Shuggie Otis, 'Strawberry Letter 23' has since been described as probably the last great psychedelic soul single of the '70s. It was written by Otis for his girlfriend who used strawberry scented paper for her love letters to him. The cover version by the Brothers Johnson made number one on the R&B charts in the summer of 1977 and 'Right on Time', the album from which it was taken, ultimately sold over a million copies.
Its tribute enough to say that Wells makes 'Strawberry Letter 23' his own and, this excellent track apart, with 'More Love More Power' he has come up with a little gem that looks set to move him to an altogether more commercial platform. For more on David go to www.davidwellsonline.com
All Music Guide