Shirley Horn

Garden of the Blues

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Shirley Horn covers several works by composer Curtis Lewis (who passed away prematurely at the age of 51 in 1969) in this 1984 trio concert at Florida Memorial College. Horn, who was introduced to Lewis by her manager, John Levy, during her debut recording session in 1960, recorded several of his works over her career, including "All Night Long," but the bittersweet nature of many of the songs heard in this performance is carried off beautifully by the singing pianist, particularly "He's Gone Again." The last four tracks comprising Lewis' "The Garden of the Blues Suite" are part narrative and part song, including the well-known composition "The Great City." Horn is in top form throughout the concert, with her soft, thoughtful vocals accompanied by her sensitive and sometimes swinging piano. Bassist Charles Ables and drummer Steve Williams provide terrific support as needed, though they sometimes lay out for a significant spell.

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