Cal Tjader / Carmen McRae


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Vibraphonist Cal Tjader's final album (he passed away four months later) found his band mostly accompanying singer Carmen McRae. The potentially exciting combination does not really come off that well. The musicians (Tjader, a rhythm section, two percussionists including Poncho Sanchez, and a pair of trombonists) had little to do. McRae sounds OK in the Latin setting, but does not uplift the diverse material (which includes "Besame Mucho," "Evil Ways," "Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me," "Speak Low" and two Stevie Wonder songs), and the effort overall is somewhat forgettable and disappointing.

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