G. Love: Lemonade

After making records for 13 years, G. Love (born Garrett Dutton) has released his most ambitious album to date, honing in on his skills for fusing hip hop and Philly soul.  His second album on Jack Johnson’s record label Brushfire Records is entitled Lemonade and blends excerpts of cool blues with breezy jazz and R&B tones complimented by hip hop driven vocals.  Featuring members of G. Love’s long time band Special Sauce with Jimi "Jazz" Prescott on upright bass and Jeffrey "Thunderhouse" Clemens on drums, Lemonade also renders the vocal services of special guests Ben Harper, Marc Broussard, Tristan Prettyman, Blackalicious, Lady Alma, Lateef, Jasper, and Jack Johnson.
 
G. Love’s duet with Prettyman on "Beautiful" gives Lemonade a romantic flow, while his more folksy cobbed hip hop tunes like "Hot Cookin’" and "Ain’t That Right" gives things attitude.  The smooth textures on "Missing My Baby" and "Let The Music Play" combines factions of blues with funky finger-picking on the acoustic guitar and hip hop springs in the rhythm section.  The organ and piano layouts on "Holla" are sewn in tightly along the hip hop motifs while G. Love fastens some of his signature harmonica moans trailing along to the slow funk motions.
 
Lemonade might be an acquired taste for most because G. Love takes music that has been marginalized and meshes them together, but once you get used to the unique combinations you appreciate his method for integrating them.
 

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