By: Rene Yedema
Vernon Reid, George Clinton, Nathalie Cole, Nona Hendryx, Martha Redbone; just a few artists with whom Aaron Whitby has worked. After years as a studio musician in London it was ripe for a solo debut from keyboardist / producer / songwriter Aaron Whitby. For Cousin From Another Planet, he wrote seven pieces, and included an arrangement of The Eye Of The Hurricane 2.0, an adaptation of Herbie Hancocks Eye Of The Hurricane. Whitby, skillful in playing the piano, Fender Rhodes and various synthesizers,
has a striking composing style. His numbers do contain memorable themes, but by the
loose way of making music, where moments and improvisations are leading, structure and construction unpredictably. Main soloists alongside the band leader are tenor saxophonist Keith Loftis and Charlie Burnham, a jazz violinist with a preference for the acoustic variant, but occasionally also the use of effects. The jazz funk fusion on this release is outlined by the rhythm section made up of grooving bassist Fred Cash, percussionist Gary Fritz and drummer Rodney Holmes further brightened up by soulful, sometimes declamatory, then sexy vocals from Whitby’s wife Redbone.