Whenever I think of an album that encompasses what ALOHA GOT SOUL means, Mackey Feary’s debut solo effort comes to mind. The album, Macky Feary Band, is an uplifting blend of jazzy keyboards, seductive strings and vocal arrangements—and of course, Mackey’s sunny, tug-at-your-heart voice. Every time I hear “You’re Young”, or the cratedigger’s favorite “A Million Stars”, I can’t help but smile…It makes me feel like all the world’s a playground!
There’s an “urgency” in his voice when he’s “talking to this person” – a tension, an urgency for the one he’s “conversing with”. It’s in the “first person”. It is one of his true hallmarks – a fabulous dimension to the way he would sing songs; like he’s talking to someone in particular…an exact individual, but it transcends to every listener as if they themselves are that person. The energy is fantastic – he had such a fabulous talent as a vocal artist. It’s the WAY he sang these songs!!WOW…
—hitomusic, comment on youtube.com
A personal favorite is “Catherine”, the LP’s second track. Each instrument creates a mellow vibe throughout the song, whether its the light keyboard playing or the gentle strumming of an undistorted guitar. The synth-bass gives the song a funky pulse, and the drummer holds it all down with rimshots and fills. Below is a video of “Catherine” with what looks like the cover art from the LP. Look closer, it’s an actual video of Honolulu at night, shot from Tantalus!
“A Million Stars” is the highlight cut. It’s all there—jazz, funk, soul—and it’s a must for a breezy night in Honolulu, or a daytime drive around the island. It’ll uplift you and keep you going till sunset.
This won’t be the last post about Mackey Feary, whose contributions to Hawaiian music are tremendous. Comprehensive production credits over at discogs.