Personnel: David Lasley, Arnold McCuller, Susan Collins (vocals); Cornell Dupree, Eric Weissberg, Hugh McCracken, Jeff Mironov, John Tropea (guitar); George Marge, Michael Brecker (reeds); Lew Soloff, Randy Brecker (trumpet); Fred Griffin, Jim Buffington (French horn); David Taylor (bass trombone); Richard Tee, Pat Rebillot, Charles Calello (keyboards); Dave Carey (vibraphone, marimba); Ron Tierno, Terry Silverlight, Charles Collins (drums); Sandy Linzer (percussion).
Audio Mixers: Jeffrey Kawalek; Sandy Linzer.
Liner Note Author: Christian John Wikane.
Recording information: House Of Music, West Orange, NJ.
Odyssey is best remembered for its 1977 disco smash "Native New Yorker," an exuberant gem that brilliantly captures the love/hate feelings New Yorkers have for their city. But those who heard that single on the radio and acquired Odyssey's self-titled debut album in the hope of hearing a lot of similar songs received a major surprise -- "Native New Yorker" isn't typical of the LP on the whole. For the most part, Odyssey favors laid-back, gentle soul-pop with a subtle Caribbean flavor and occasional hints of jazz. Naturally, some of the people who expected Odyssey to be one big disco party were disappointed, but those who could accept the album for what it was realized that album tracks like "Weekend Lover," "Golden Hands," and "Ever Lovin' Sam" had a lot of charm. And the New York trio deserves credit for being unorthodox; in 1977, not many R&B groups were incorporating Caribbean elements. One of Odyssey's more consistent albums, this 1977 debut isn't great for dancing (except for "Native New Yorker" of course), but is always great for listening. ~ Alex Henderson