Pepper Adams

The Master

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Pepper Adams had a demonstrably heavier tone on the baritone sax compared to the better-known Gerry Mulligan and had much fewer opportunities to record as a leader, though he obviously ranks among the most important players on the instrument. This 1980 studio date with Tommy Flanagan, George Mraz, and Leroy Williams is a stimulating outing, dominated by the leader's originals. "Bossaallegro" is a breezy bossa nova, while the bittersweet ballad "Lovers of Their Time" suggests the influence of Billy Strayhorn, who is represented with a mellow, loping arrangement of "Chelsea Bridge." A romp through "My Shining Hour" closes the date with a flourish. Sadly, this enjoyable CD disappeared from print around the time Muse ceased operations after its sale.

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