Ran Blake / Houston Person

Suffield Gothic

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On four of the nine selections of this otherwise solo piano set, Ran Blake duets with the warm and soulful tenor of Houston Person. Rather than playing some blues or standards (all of the solo pieces are well-known), Person and Blake surprisingly explore four of the pianist's quirky originals, and the unusual matchup turns out quite well. Other highlights include Blake's transformations of "Pete Kelly's Blues," "Old Man River" and "Stars and Stripes Forever," plus a medley of tunes played in tribute to Mahalia Jackson. No Ran Blake record is ever dull.

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