Art Pepper


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This double-LP reissues two of altoist Art Pepper's earliest studio dates as a leader. On four songs he is joined by pianist Russ Freeman, bassist Bob Whitlock and drummer Bobby White, a quiet trio that allows Pepper to dominate such songs as "Everything Happens to Me" and "Tickle Toe." In addition, Pepper matches harmonies and wits with tenor saxophonist Jack Montrose (along with pianist Claude Williamson, bassist Monty Budwig and drummer Larry Bunker) on eight exuberant numbers including the earliest recording of Art's famous "Straight Life." But that is not all, for the second of these two LPs contains previously unissued alternate takes of all but one of the 11 pieces. Because Pepper and Montrose were in very good form during the performances, they are well worth hearing twice. In fact, a slightly later LP (titled Rediscoveries) would add 14 more versions to the legacy of these two exciting sessions. This highly enjoyable music has unfortunately only been reissued on CD thus far in random fashion.

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