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Urban Dreams

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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One of Pepper "the knife" Adams' last recordings features five-time grammy nominee Jimmy Rowles on piano.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 5, 2003)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Quicksilver
  • ASIN: B00009Y3T2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #311,767 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By Douglas T Martin on August 3, 2004
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
A lot of baritone sax-led recordings add a higher register woodwind or brass instrument to the front line to make the recording a little brighter. On this quartet recording, Pepper Adams proves that the baritone sax can front a piano/bass/drums rhythm section without the overall tone sliding into murkiness. Dexter Gordon's "Dexter Rides Again" opens the recording and on it Pepper Adams demonstrates how the allegedly cumbersome baritone sax can be just as versatile and bright-sounding as the other, lighter members of the saxophone family. Bassist George Mraz takes the first of several solos that are scattered thoughout this program. Most bassists only get a solo or two as a sideman, so it's a testament to Mraz melodic skills that he is called upon so many times to step up to the front on this recording. "Urban Dreams", a Pepper Adams composition, is a slow ballad that conjures images of dark streets, wet from recent rains and bathed in lamplight. Things occasionally get tense, but everything smooths out in the end.

"Three Little Words" starts off with a roar, then unexpectly falls into a loose loping swing featuring a short solo from Mraz. before drummer Billy Hart and Adams start trading fours in doubletime. After that, Hart rockets this number at breakneck speed. This is Hart's feature on the recording and he proves himself to be a highly kinetic drummer. The standard, "Time Is On My Hands", is taken at midtempo and features nicely melodic solos from pianist Jimmy Rowles and bassist Mraz. As Adams comes in with his solo he quotes from the song "Witchcraft" so effectively you'd think that was the song they were playing all along.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a fine album on the obscure Palo Alto label. If you can get the vinyl their stuff was great. But this is a good transfer on 24bit cd. Trentino and Time on My Hands are wonderful. Having Rowles and Mraz is great frosting and Billy Hart is tasteful and in the pocket. Definitely a buy! Enjoy.
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everyone has heard of the great jerry mulligan, and that's cool, but the late pepper, while lessor known, was another master of the baritone sax. the man could blow. pepper goes back a ways and this was recorded back in the 80's I think, but remember, jazz was, is and always will be. the title cut alone makes this cd a must, because it is truly beautiful.
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