Benny Waters

From Paradise (Small's) to Shangri-La

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It was this CD that re-introduced the great Benny Waters to American jazz fans. Already 85 at the time, Waters plays with the energy and ideas of a 45-year-old. Most impressive on his thick-toned tenor, Waters also plays alto and clarinet in addition to taking energetic vocals on "Hit That Jive Jack" and "Romance Without Finance." Backed by a rhythm section led by pianist Don Coates, Waters is virtually the entire show on seven standards plus two of his originals ("Strollin' Along the Rhine" and "No Problem"). A swing stylist who kept his mind open not only toward bop but John Coltrane, Waters sounds surprisingly modern on the stomps and ballads, making one wonder how he could be neglected for the previous 50 years. A highly recommended gem, this is Benny Waters' definitive recording.

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