I used to work with Carey in Atlanta until I moved up to our corporate offices in Charlotte. About 2-3 weeks ago, I ran into Carey in our Charlotte office not realizing he had moved up here a few months earlier (he is working in a different building than I am which is why I hadn’t seen him earlier). I also came to find out that he had released his first full length album back in April 2016.
Now I knew Carey was an extremely talented violinist, as he has performed at company events, but the extent of his talent I had no idea. He was kind enough to supply me with a copy of his album and I told him I would give it a listen. Let me tell you that I am so glad I did. I was blown away by the musicianship, the vocals and the production of the album.
How would I describe his album ‘Mr. Music’? I would say it is a blend of hip-hop, jazz, R&B and a little blues. A total fusion of many different types of music. The flow of the album is exceptional and it will really put you in a great mood. What I also like about the album is its broad appeal to audiences. My wife and I both loved it and both of daughters as well. I think that speaks to the fact that really good music can impact anyone and everyone.
‘Mr. Music’ is a college level class on what makes music great and he lectures you on the finer points of a good song. His journey through this album will keep you motivated to do your homework of listening to this album over and over again. Sit back, enjoy and as the album cover says, “Class is in Session”.
The album consists of 4 remixes, 2 covers and 5 original songs (remixes and cover are noted in the track list below – all others are originals). Per Carey,
For the remixes, I took familiar instrumentals and wrote some original lyrics and solo instrumentals to them.
The opening song, “Imagination” lets you take a trip through Carey’s mind through a great hip hop fashion. Immediately you hear his smooth vocals. The next song is another hip hop song, “Her”, and then comes the very sexy “Jupiter Love” that would make even Marvin Gaye proud. Put this on with the one you love or the one you love right now and see what happens.
“Vibe in 5/4” brings you some fast-paced rapping with a nice jazz sound going on. Next up comes “Violin Interlude” and is exactly what I knew Carey could do. His violin work is top notch and the whole vibe of this song is phenomenal. I could seriously take a whole album of just Carey’s violin music.
Carey has a couple covers on the album including “Get Her Back (Robin Thicke cover)” and “That’s All (Nat King Cole cover)”. “Get Her Back” is an exceptional cover and I will be honest and tell you his version is better than the original. I am not a huge Robin Thicke to begin with, but Carey’s vocals are so much better. And on “That’s All”, Carey’s vocals sound like Nat King Cole. So smooth and it takes you back to the era of when Nat King Cole was performing.
“Aintcha Fool” is one of my favorites on the album. Between this song and “Get Her Back”, I feel he sounds a lot like John Legend. My daughter was listening and she agreed. “Aintcha Fool” is a little bluesy and all around great sound. His violin on this one is exceptional as well.
I said “Aintcha Fool was one of my favorites, but “The Music” is my favorite on the album. This song should be on the radio right now, it is that good. The song comes across as the essence of Cool. Vocally, he hits on all cylinders.
The next to last song is “Radio” and is another very radio friendly song. Upbeat and highlights his violin some more. His creativity on this song is great moving between hip hop, pop & R&B. The last song, “Time”, is a nice R&B song and a great bonus track as most bonus tracks you get usually suck.
The album is interlaced with tracks that are called “Lectures”. They are entertaining enough and worth a listen, but it is the music that is the pure standout on this album.
- “Imagination – Remix (Outkast – Player’s Ball Instrumental)”
- “Lesson Plan (Lecture)”
- “Her – Remix (Teedra Moses – Caught Up Instrumental)”
- “Jupiter Love – Remix (Jeff Bradshaw – NoLa Groove Instrumental)”
- “Vibe in 5/4 – Remix (Darryl Reeves – Southern Lights Instrumental)”
- “Reflection (Lecture)”
- “Violin Interlude”
- “Get Her Back (Robin Thicke cover)”
- “Aintcha Fool”
- “The Music”
- “That’s All (Nat King Cole cover)”
- “Dismissal (Lecture)”
- “Brainstorm w/ Big Brother”
- “Time” (Bonus)
There is really nothing more for me to say about this album other than you have to give it a listen. You can download his album at www.careydurham.bandcamp.com. You can download for free or donate an amount of your choice. I definitely recommend donating and showing support for him so we can continue to receive his music.
In the coming weeks, I will be sitting down with Carey for an interview so we can get to know him and his music a little more.