Forget what you think you know about Michael Lington. Now that he’s gone mainstream with his career and consciousness shifting new album Soul Appeal, he’s full steam ahead like no one’s ever heard him before, blazing a fresh, innovative road for himself with a freewheeling immersion into the heart of the 60’s and 70’s Memphis Soul vibe. From his 1997 self-titled breakthrough album through 2012’s star-studded Pure, the charismatic saxophonist has wowed
and surprised his fans before. But he’s never had more fun, played more loose, solo’d more intensely or improvised this expansively.
Many instrumental contemporary jazz artists tout their latest recording as “different” or “something unique” when it’s more or less a variation on their trademark thing. In the case of Soul Appeal, Lington will let two legendary musical voices verify the reality that these sessions don’t just rattle that cage but joyfully transcend it. Lenny Castro, whose thousands of recording credits include Sanborn, The Jacksons, Eric Clapton, George Benson and Elton John, thanked the saxman after the sessions with the words, “My soul is so musically satisfied.”