Yacht Rock Sets Sail, Al Jarreau Still Struttin’

If you’re tired of watching old episodes of Yacht Rock at home, good news: The guys may be coming to your town in their “Yacht Rock tour.” As Spinner reports:

And now comes the ‘Yacht Rock’ “tour,” in which the episodes will be screened on selected dates before a live audience in New York, Minneapolis, Detroit and Muskegon, Michigan. Ryznar and the cast are scheduled to make appearances at the screenings. “We’re up and around walking and hanging with everybody, and they can ask us all the questions they want in person,” Ryznar says.

That’s Union Hall in Brooklyn (5/31), Bryant Lake Bowl in Minneapolis (6/7), and Small’s in Hamtramck on 7/2 and the Harbor Theater in Muskegon, 7/5. The Spinner piece also includes something about Al Jarreau.

“I just got really excited about Al Jarreau,” [Yachtsmen J.D. Ryznar] says of the jazz vocalist, whose video for his 1983 song ‘Mornin” is on the ‘Yacht Rock’ blog. “[Members of] Toto played on his albums.”

It’s true. We checked and the Video Hangover grad is there in all its Disney-style glory. The song, sans video, is also at their MySpace. But might as well enjoy the video.

As Jon McMillan presciently wrote of the clip in his original VH: “An Al Jarreau sweater happens when you relax your eyes and stare at a Cosby Sweater until the sailboat appears.” The sailboat has appeared. Also, ?uestlove may be working with Al Jarreau according to this Denver Westworld Q&A (via DailySwarm):

?uestlove: We did a song in 1997 on Illadelph Halflife that our A&R guy complained about. He was like, “Yo, why is all that hiss in there?” And one of the engineers accidentally left two blank tracks on as loud as possible in the mix, and he got fired. He lost his job over that. And it’s so funny, because now I insist that happens. Back then, I told the studio owner, “Don’t fire him over that. I’m with that. It’s cool.” But the studio owner is like, “Nah, because now I’ve got to pay for this shit, and it’s coming out of my money, and he fucked up.” I tried to save his job, and I couldn’t. But thank you to him for teaching me a new trick. I do that all the time now, because I love that sound, I love that hiss, I love that imperfection.

Westword: Now do you think you’re going to have every surviving soul star from the ’70s knocking on your door and saying, “Can you do this for me, too?”

?uestlove: Hell, yes. This is my equivalent of putting my apple pie on the windowsill and enticing the whole neighborhood to come over. Absolutely. Tom Jones is next.

Westword: Seriously? Tom Jones is next?

?uestlove: Yeah, we’ve got a meeting with Tom Jones in July. And we have a meeting with Al Jarreau.

You heard it here first: Jarreau comeback in ’09.