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Acid Jazz Jamiroquai, Ronny Jordan, Guru, Courtney PineWhat is Acid Jazz

Well for one thing it is very difficult to define, the term is used to cover a wide range of music. Originating back in 1987 in the UK dance scene it defined a funky music style which incorporated elements of jazz, 70s funk, hip-hop, soul, and latin grooves. It could be all live, it could be sampled, and it could be a mixture of the both. The focus was on the music and not on the lyrics/words. The music has a definite groove, some is high energy dance normally with a Latin groove whilst others are more contemplative.  DJ Gilles Peterson on KISS FM and the Talkin Loud and Saying Something parties formed the basis for the type of music. Gilles went on to form the Acid Jazz record label, whose first single Galliano's "Fredrick Lies Still" a cover of Curtis Mayfield's "Freddie's Dead," from the film Superfly was a club hit. Gilles even announced in 1988 that the term Acid Jazz was dead, and that no one wanting respect would dare call themselves acid jazz anymore. For those not aware it should be said that the UK club scene centers around music whereas in other countries such as the USA it centers around fashion. This leads to an ever changing musical environment with a new term emerging every month. Despite Gilles' pronouncement the term Acid Jazz is still used to cover a whole gambit of music, and so the term has stuck.

Recommended Listening

This Is Acid Jazz, Vol. 6: The Golden Age Of Groove This Is Acid Jazz, Vol. 6: The Golden Age Of Groove
"I had heard a few Acid Jazz songs over time and felt that I should maybe explore it a bit more. I bought "this is acid jazz vol.6" and was blown away. This was the type of music that I'd always looked for. It had the freeness and lightness of Jazz, with synthesizers, funky basslines and sometimes heavy electronic beats. But it was more than that. It was music that was very easy to listen to, groovy and of high quality. I would certainly recommend this CD to anyone would like a view into the world of Acid Jazz. This is the music of the future; this is the music of freedom; this is acid jazz." Nolan Rawlings ( from Ottawa, Canada , March 27, 1999

Audio CD (January 20, 1998)
List Price: $16.97 Our Price: $12.99 You Save: $3.98 (23%)
Click Here To Order Acid Jazz, Vol 6 From

Notz on The Music

Since the early Acid Jazz days of 1987 there has been an explosion of artists in this genre. A good place to start is the Acid Jazz Server. This is the premier source on the internet for Acid Jazz information. It has an FAQ and lists of contacts, bands, and links.

The MIDI files here were produced for your enjoyment. If you want to learn more about how to produce your own MIDI files see our Jazz Midi Pages.

Notz On Jamiroquai

Jamiroquai are one of the early protagonist in the Acid Jazz genre. They have had a number of UK hits and now in the last few years emerged onto the USA market. Their recent big hit Virtual Insanity is a masterful composition in it's seeming simplicity and groove, making it very appealing to all, and yet has a great musical complexity and arrangement.

In terms of brief musical analysis:

bulletThe chords cross barlines and are often not of the same length.
bulletThere are bridging chords between verses and choruses and other interesting harmonies ( e.g. check out the ending ).

The basic harmony is as follows:

Intro: Ebm7  Fm7b5 (Db9/F)   E/Gb   Gb Badd9  Cm7b5   Ebm/B   Bb7#5

Verse: Ebm7  Ab7  Db9  GbMaj7 Cm7b5 BMaj7 Bb7#5  Ebm7

Chorus: BMaj7 Bb7/F  Ebm7 Abm7 Bb7

Download Virtual Insanity - Piano & Harmonica Melody Line   Virtual Insanity - Piano & Harmonica Melody Line
Download Virtual Insanity - Fully Orchestrated   Virtual Insanity - Fully Orchestrated

More Jamiroquai MIDI Files

Emergency On Planet Earth

Download When You Gonna Learn (Digeridoo)    When You Gonna Learn (Digeridoo)

There is an interesting Jamiroquai Album called "When You gonna learn ?" released on Columbia 44K 74925, which has 6 different versions of this tune. Interestingly it also contains the original demo complete with ducks quacking in the background, the different mixes give lots of insight into how the tune was composed and developed. Worth getting if you can find it, unfortunately it was only released in Europe.

Download Too Young To Die   Too Young To Die
Download Music Of The Mind   Music Of The Mind
Download Blow Your Mind   Blow Your Mind

The Return Of The Space Cowboy

Download Half The Man   Half The Man

Travelling Without Moving

Download Cosmic Girl   Cosmic Girl
Download Alright   Alright

Notz Jamiroquai Recommended Listening

Jamiroquai Album ImageTravelling Without Moving - Jamiroquai

This is the latest album from Jay Kay including the track Virtual Insanity. Highly Recommended

Adding pop savvy to their soul-disco mix, Jamiroquai grabbed the attention of MTV and Top 40 radio and won a Grammy with this platinum-selling album, their third. It's a fine record, with warm keyboards, sweet strings, and irrepressible grooves grounding Jay Kay's sublime vocals and fueling the hits ("Virtual Insanity," "Cosmic Girl," the title track). That voice--elastic, jazzy--is the fire of the band, but immaculate guitar sounds, snappy backup vocals, and clever old-school soul samples (Eddie Harris on "Alright," Esther Phillips on "High Times") are the details that create perfection. Balancing the dance-ready, radio-friendly tracks are the ballads "Everyday" and "Spend a Lifetime," the reggae-styled "Drifting Along," and a couple of didjeridoo instrumentals. --Suzanne McElfresh

Audio CD (January 14, 1997)
List Price: $16.97 Our Price: $12.99 You Save: $3.98 (23%)
Click Here To Order Travelling Without Moving From


Notz On Ronny Jordan

UK Guitarist Ronny Jordan, big break came with the release of his hit UK single So What a reworking of the Miles Davis classic, with Arnie Somejee playing Acoustic Bass. He gave the song a new modern groove.

In terms of brief musical analysis:

bulletThe song follows Miles's form 16 bars Dm7, 8 bars Ebm7, 8 bars Dm7
bulletThe Guitar uses riffs and syncopated lines
bulletBass line is hip-hop style.
Download So What   So What  - An Extract

Notz Ronny Jordan Recommended Listening

Ronny Jordan Album Image The Antidote - Ronny Jordan

This is Ronny's first album ( 1992), and includes the hit single So What and the great tracks Get to Grips and After Hours.

Super album this, jam packed with groovy tunes. This album features some of the coolest songs, the best is the cover of an old Miles Davis song So What. CHECK IT OUT! from Sydney, Australia , July 27, 1998

Audio CD (April 28, 1992)
List Price: $16.97 Our Price: $12.99 You Save: $3.98 (23%)
Click Here To Order The Antidote From

Notz On US3

UK based US3 grew out of the musical marriage of Geoff Wilkinson a DJ and Mel Simpson a jazz pianist. With their 1991 gigs in Camden Town's Jazz Cafe and the Hammersmiths Orange they combined sampling Jazz records with live performers. Signed up by Blue Note, their first single Cantaloop ( Flip Fantasia ) was a world wide success.

In terms of brief musical analysis:

bulletSamples of Cantaloupe Island by Herbie Hancock and Introduction from A Night in Birdland, Vol.1 by Art Blakey Quintet. Live trumpet by Gerrard Presencer.
bulletFollows to degree Herbie's form 4bars Fm7, 4 bars Db7, 4bars Dm7, 4 bars Fm7
Download Cantaloop ( Flip Fantasia )   Cantaloop ( Flip Fantasia )

Notz US3 Recommended Listening

US3 Album ImageHand On The Torch - US3

US3, first released album is still a classic. Contains samples from Blue Note Records. Includes the hit Herbie Hancock sampled Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia).

The jazz/hip-hop combo gets yo' body movin!
You just can't stop yourself from jumpin out of yo' chair and bustin' a move on the dance flo'! I feel the rhythm in my soul, and I just hafta move with the music. Us3 mixes the smooth qualities of jazz with the upbeat contemporary rap scene to get an awesome blend of the old and the new. These guys get 5 stars! Dru from Denver, CO , April 14, 1999

Audio CD (November 16, 1993)
List Price: $15.97 Our Price: $12.99 You Save: $2.98 (19%)
Click Here To Order Hand On The Torch From

Notz Additional Acid Jazz Recommended Listening

Courtney Pine Album ImageUnderground - Courtney Pine.

Courtney's new album is much closer to the Acid Jazz category than his previous albums. Features a number of great tracks including Modern Day Jazz.

"Smoking ! Great album. Played it to death. From the ethereal "Invisible" and "Silver Surfer" to the hard funk of "Oneness of Mind" and "Underground" - a great fusion of hip hop and jazz. And the accompaniment CANNOT be overlooked, particularly Cyrus Chestnut and his work on the electric piano. And oh yeah, if you like driving with all the windows down, sunroof open, or top down, with the stereo going, I think you'll like this one." from Stamford,CT , March 27, 1999

Audio CD (September 16, 1997)
List Price: $16.97 Our Price: $12.99 You Save: $3.98 (23%)
Click Here To Order Underground From

Jazzmatazz Album ImageJazzmatazz - Guru

As the liner notes say an experimental fusion of hip-hop and jazz. Features the great tracks Loungin', Down the Backstreets, and Transit Ride

After rhyming over Premier's doctored jazz beats in Gang Starr, Guru decided to take it to the next level, employing the talents of actual jazz musicians to create the grooves over which he would flow. Coming off like a jazzier extension of the Brand New Heavies' Heavy Rhyme Experience: Vol. 1, Jazzmatazz, Vol. 1 brought together a diverse group of jazz cats both old-school and new, including Roy Ayers, Donald Byrd, Lonnie Liston Smith, Ronny Jordan, and Courtney Pine. Guru even enlisted the serene pipes of Carleen Anderson and N'Dea Davenport and acted as something of an international hip-hop ambassador when he flipped "Le Bien, Le Mal" with French mic pro MC Solaar. From the Blue Note-style cover art to the hepcat spoken-word intro, this package is pure hip-hop jazz music. Jazz purists may wish to note that the grooves lean heavily toward the funkier 1970s era of jazz, and hardcore hip-hop heads my be turned off by the mellower musical stance. But then again, this is neither pure jazz nor hardcore hip-hop but rather an extension of the two. --Spence Abbott

Audio CD (May 18, 1993)
List Price: $11.97 Our Price: $11.49 You Save: $0.48 (4%)
Click Here To Order Jazzmatazz From


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