Mark Rapp: Who's the Man?


Who's the Man?


Mark Rapp (trumpet)


Token Tales (Paved Earth)


Mark Rapp (trumpet),

Jamie Reynolds (keyboards), Gavin Fallow (bass), Kyle Struve (drums)


Composed by Mark Rapp


Recorded: New York, February 2007


Rating: 90/100 (learn more)

On his web site, trumpeter Mark Rapp describes his sound as " bridging the gap between modern jazz and contemporary music. There's a wide division between the two, both artistically and in the audiences. I'm connecting the best of both worlds." My own jaded interpretation of those words is that Rapp is trying to walk the tightrope between contemporary jazz and Smooth Jazz (gag, choke, puke) without offending the expectations of either genre's fans. While I believe he is playing a dangerous game, he seems to think there is plenty of room to do that. I wish I were as confident as he seems to be. Then again, based upon what I have heard from Token Tales, he may be on to something.

"Who's the Man?" is a jazz-funk number that could be the theme of one of those blaxploitation films updated to modern times. Wesley Snipes would star as an undercover vice agent who lives the seedy life while struggling to visit his children, who live with his estranged wife (Gabrielle Union), who couldn't take the lifestyle anymore. This music would play over the opening credits as Snipes ends a nightlong stakeout and drives back to the old neighborhood to watch his kids leave the house to go to school. Sadly, he employs the same stakeout methods to view his own children as he just had on the job. My feeling is that any music that can make you conjure up such a scenario is worth listening to. Perhaps you should put some time aside and keep your own close watch and listen to what Rapp is doing. I am still a bit concerned about Rapp's musical mission. He faces a dangerous road ahead. Here's to a safe and rewarding journey.

Reviewer: Walter Kolosky


  • 1 Eric // May 14, 2009 at 12:28 AM
    The cover song "Who's the Man?" is fabulous!