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Music Review: Keith Chagall – Invitation

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Invitation is an appropriate name for the new Keith Chagall album. With a mix of 10 songs in a light dance, Latin beat mixed with jazz-fusion, this album can really get you moving!

That being said, the album is certainly not for everyone. It could have a distinct following of people who listen to and are fans of light radio stations like Satellite’s “The Blend” or “Love.” If you are into grunge, hard rock, punk or disco, this album is not for you.

I found Invitation interesting to listen to. I like the way Chagall uses finger picking techniques on the guitar. I also like that he brings in various nontraditional instruments into the mix like in his first song, “She’s Incredible” where he incorporates a flutist who livens up the piece.

Chagall also likes to use harmony in his melodies. In the song, “Invitation," which is also the album’s title, he has a sax solo and trumpet solo that feels as if it were right out of a jazz club from New Orleans.

According to the press material I received, Keith Chagall is a Colombian born American who currently lives in Los Angeles, CA. In 2001, he was in a severe car accident and needed repair on his neck and vertebrae. A titanium plate was placed behind his Adam’s Apple making it difficult for him to sing. But he persevered. He went through years of physical therapy and worked hard to get back to performing and now apparently, “he’s better than ever.”

For the most part, his songs on Invitation are very romantic and enticing. The song, “Summer of My Life” puts you in a happy mood. It’s a true love song, “you are the summer of my life,” he sings, “if I had my way, I would feel you always with me.” It’s just a sweet love song that makes you smile.

The song, Bolero de Chagall, starts off with a strong Latin sound using the guitar with finger picking every note. When listening to this, it puts you in a relaxed trance. As the song progresses, the beat picks up and the song becomes more danceable. Whenever I listened to it, I wanted to get up and Tango! It’s the only song on the album that has no vocals, making it the most interesting song on the album.

If you go to the Keith Chagall website, you can hear the entire album. You can also view photos and upcoming shows. When interviewed by a local LA based radio talk show, Chagall said, “I am influenced by artists that last like Stevie Wonder, The Beatles and Sting. Those who write wonderful music that are timeless.”

I don’t know if Keith Chagall will ever be in the league of those top performers, but I can say that this album is one that is timeless. It can be listened to and enjoyed for years to come.

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