Art Farmer Quintet


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Mirage marked a reunion for Art Farmer and Clifford Jordan, who had known each other for decades but only recorded together on occasion at the time of these 1982 sessions. Backed by a strong rhythm section consisting of pianist Fred Hersch, bassist Ray Drummond, and drummer Akira Tana, they blend well in Charlie Parker's Caribbean-flavored blues "Barbados." Farmer's regular pianist when he toured Europe, Fritz Pauer, contributed the easygoing samba "Passos" and "Cherokee Sketches," which alternates between a treacherously difficult, Thelonious Monk-like variation and a brisk reworking of the familiar standard. Hersch wrote the loping, exotic "Mirage," in which Farmer and Jordan excel in their respective solos. Jimmy Heath's "Smilin' Billy" (dedicated to drummer Billy Higgins) provides a satisfying conclusion to this Soul Note CD, a precursor to feature recorded collaborations between Farmer and Jordan that ended only with the latter's death in 1993.

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