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  • 1. B. E.
  • 2. Criss Cross
  • 3. Shawn-Neeq
  • 4. Gee-Gee
  • 5. B. K.

One of the most radiant is his debut, Shawn-Neeq, originally issued in 1973. The album came in the wake of the soul jazz era when Miles Davis' startling shift into a Sly Stone-informed electric-jazz swept over musicians and hip listeners like a tsunami. Thanks to the Black Jazz label, Keys did his part in delivering good Miles-influenced jazz-funk to record buyers, music that has aged surprisingly well. Throughout Shawn-Neeq, Keys' guitar shows him to be a close stylistic ally of two guitarists with a similar soul jazz pedigree: Grant Green and George Benson. His pentatonic, bluesy riffs and occasional 'outside' sounds grace songs based on riffs or chords. The man plays with control and confidence." --Frank-John Hadley, Downbeat; Personnel: Calvin Keys (guitar), Bob Braye (drums), Lawrence Evans (bass), Larry Nash (electric piano), Owen Marshall (flute, hose-a-phone, misc.)