“Ace Livingston’s dynamic and infectious My Metamorphosis is a rich invitation into his musical life and emotional frame of mind as he makes some powerful transitions. Vibing brilliantly with the old school keyboard vibes of his producer, Chris “Big Dog” Davis, and other veteran musicians like guitarist Jonathan Dubose, Jr., the melodic, super grooving bassist offers an exciting versatility, drawing from R&B, jazz, gospel and world music to create a masterful journey about his life. Sidemen as successful as he is can easily just cruise through their careers saving their magic in the service of other people, but we urban jazz fans are blessed that he has stepped outside the box and opened up his world.”
- Jonathan Widran
Veteran Music Journalist, Well respected PR Writer, and Voting Member of The Recording Academy
A brilliant electric bassist, Asa “Ace” Livingston is both technically skilled and inventive. His lyrical style, which is well showcased throughout My Metamorphosis, often finds him “singing” melodies on his bass, drawing out the beauty of each note. That does not mean that his playing is not consistently funky and danceable, but that he has learned the wisdom of letting every sound count. The 15 songs are consistently funky and grooving but also contain a lot of variety in their mood and tempo variations. Throughout My Metamorphosis, Asa “Ace” Livingston stakes out his claim as one of the most skilled electric bassists on the current scene, as a skilled composer of infectious songs.
- Scott Yanow
Author of 11 books including The Great Jazz Guitarists, The Jazz Singers and Jazz On Record 1917-76
Jazz Gospel Central - New Kids on the Block
Review by Terrence Richburg © 2009
The ACE LIVINGSTON Project
We've probably all experienced occasions when it seemed God was directing His full attention to our lives, and ordering our every step toward the very core of His mission for us individually. Well, it appears that God was doing just that in the case of the mega-talented and anointed bassist, Asa "Ace" Livingston. Among the many goals of JGC, one major purpose is to reach and bring together co-laborers in the vineyard of the Gospel Jazz music ministry, with a particular focus and emphasis on "New Kids On the Block." Referred to us by Gina Miller at Lite Records in Nashville, this edition of this important JGC feature highlights a musician who is a very "major" player (literally) in the music industry in so many ways, but is probably one of the very best kept secrets, ever.
Asa "Ace" Livingston, a native of Jamaica so rich in culture, yet American-raised, made music his career of choice over the profession of soccer (a close second)--and thank God he did! Somehow kicking a ball around on a field and finally into a goal just doesn't seem to remotely compare to the monumental impact and life-changing affect Ace's music is destined to have on everyone who hears it. As he plays you can distinguish so many classic styles and artistic influences, but what shines through the most is Ace's powerful sense of purpose, direction and passion on his instrument--yet, tempered with a profound sense of true humility and heart-affirmed thanksgiving.
Although Ace has served as musical director, and recorded, played and performed all over the world with an incredible catalog of "Who's Who" in the entertainment industry, including such household names as Rachelle Farrell, 98 Degrees, Jessica Simpson, Usher, Mario Winan, Pink, Alex Bugnon, Joe, Chico DeBarge, Israel And The New Breed, Jennifer Lopez and Montel Williams, and most recently, Abundant Life Family Worship Church and Youthful Praise, Livingston saved the crème de la crème of himself, his artistry and his ministry for his debut CD, The ACE LIVINGSTON Project. Forged by the formidable production team of H. Doobie Powell and Ace himself, the music of The ACE LIVINGSTON Project captures you immediately with an innovative introductory display and amalgamated blend of Jaco Pastorius and Marcus Miller influenced grooves and melodic articulation against a backdrop of the joyful sounds of children playing. This first track entitled "Emotions" then advances to accurately express the depth of the writer, Ace's obvious spiritual outpouring of passion for the object of his affection and his eternal faith. After a short "Selah" Ace doesn't stop for long before he sets up the "funk jam of life" with the exciting, foot stomping, "Giving it what it means". This groove is like having your desert way before the main course arrives and features many of Ace's best bass techniques all at once, as well as some great horn lines and fresh chord surprises. You can also take special notice of the strong keyboard work including a really, really nice Rhodes solo by Ace's co-producer, H. Doobie Powell.
As the river of favorites continues to flow, the pristine bass tone and joyful melodies offered by Ace capture the essence of praise and worship with instrumental utterances of the highest order to God in an Israel Houghton composition, "Hallelujah". This track also features the tasteful accompaniment and rhythm guitar stylings of the amazing Jonathan DuBose, Jr., an artist and world-renowned musician in his own right. "My Promise" continues the Livingston trademark of unforgettable, power-packed melodies, but this time with a hot, lazy-medium groove, in a hand-clapping inspired, R&B flavored setting--by far one of the strongest performances of Ace's extraordinary bass soloing technique and anointing. The end of this track continues to expound upon the gifts of Ace's "promise" to God through his soulful bass solo riffs, the soaring background vocals of Denise Powell, and the expanding bed of colorful chord changes. Another strong funk jam feature is "Something I Said" which showcases Ace on key bass and adds some extremely cool sax solos by Tim Green.
The ACE LIVINGSTON Project is really a "must have" for all Gospel Jazz enthusiasts who really appreciate great instrumental music spiritually infused and passionately resonant with positive energy and strong rhythms. But also Ace and his project offer fans of any style or musical genre a virtual array of timeless melodies and heart-warming inspiration to enjoy for years to come.