Al Henderson

Dinosaur Dig

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Bassist Al Henderson proves to be a very skillful songwriter/composer on this set. His compositions include tributes to Charles Mingus ("Mingus") and Thelonious Monk ("Monk in Space"), plus other selections that have the same type of joyful freedom as the music of Mingus and Monk. Henderson, pianist Richard Whiteman, and drummer Barry Romberg all play well, but the solo star is easily Alex Dean, who is equally impressive on tenor, alto, bass clarinet, and oboe. Highlights include the jazz waltz "Andalusian Landscape" (which has a particularly strong melody), the heated "Fire and Ice," the quirky "The Beggars' Promenade," and the complex "Hadronic Interactions." This set from Canada is highly recommended.

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