Ralph Pena

Master of the Bass

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The previously unreleased privately recorded material included on this 1996 CD features the obscure but talented bassist Ralph Pena performing five spirited duets with pianist Pete Jolly, one with pianist Joe Albany and four trio numbers with Albany and the great altoist Herb Geller (who is heard in top form). The reasonably well-recorded performances include blues, bop and several obscurities (such as "Whims Of Chambers," "While A Cigarette Was Burning" and "I Don't Wanna Be Kissed"). Pena, who died in a car accident in 1969 while in his early forties, was a fine supportive bassist and a good soloist, making this rare material a strong tribute to his talents.

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