Paul Bley

If We May

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Paul Bley has long enjoyed engaging in fairly free improvising, making this set of standards (along with the title cut, an original blues) a bit of a surprise. With bassist Jay Anderson and drummer Adam Nussbaum, Bley plays such songs as "Long Ago and Far Away," "All the Things You Are" and "Confirmation" fairly straight at first, almost as if he were normally a bop-based improviser. The music is quite accessible to straightahead fans even if Bley gives these warhorses some new twists, and he shows that he can swing with the best of them (not that anyone really doubted it).

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