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Darren Rahn: Once in a Lifetime

Every year, a few talented pop-jazz musicians who have performed with top acts capable of being recognized by their last names only-Koz and Tisdale come to mind-make a go of it on their own. They all seemingly have one thing in common on their CDs: a song written and/or performed by respected contemporary-jazz pianist Jeff Lorber. Here comes Darren Rahn with Lorber on the lead tune, appropriately titled “Breakin’ Out,” a catchy but too safe composition that simply repeats a hook too many times. But Rahn is a talented player who rebounds with “Groove Tonight,” “Sax a la Funk” and few other goodies.

Rahn made his mark on the airwaves a few years ago as the producer and saxophonist on Tisdale’s No. 1 song “Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now,” and Tisdale returns the favor with piccolo bass on “On the Rebound” (Tisdale being a former basketball star, his discography and credits are full of b-ball-related puns). But Tisdale is wasted on the song, as he doesn’t have much to say. An even weirder turn is “Once in a Lifetime,” where Rahn gets Koz to play soprano sax alongside his own soprano sax. Not sure what the point was there. Rahn has the potential to become a major player, but he needs to settle into his own skin and take more chances with his songs.

Originally Published