Dick Hafer

Prez Impressions

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Veteran tenor saxophonist Dick Hafer's sudden emergence as a brilliant soloist on his Fresh Sound recording is a very welcome event. A reliable musician for the previous 40 years (mostly as a section player in big bands), Hafer heads a quartet (with pianist Ross Tompkins, bassist Dave Carpenter, and drummer Jake Hanna) and displays his own wonderful tenor sound, which not only looks toward Lester Young of the 1930s but Prez of the '50s. Hafer is quite creative within Young's style (not merely copying Prez) and swings hard on ten swing standards and a song apiece by Al Cohn and Zoot Sims. It's a wonderful outing of melodic mainstream music by an often overlooked tenor master.

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