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Dave Brubeck

This Is Jazz, Vol. 39: Dave Brubeck Plays Standards

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This Is Jazz's second Brubeck package focuses more intently upon something than did the first -- namely, a selection of standards that Brubeck and his groups purveyed over a wide span of time. With a stray live "Sometimes I'm Happy" from 1955 and a "Things Ain't What They Used to Be" with Gerry Mulligan from 1968 bracketing the timeframe, the remaining six tracks span the lifetime of the classic Brubeck Quartet with Paul Desmond, Gene Wright and Joe Morello (1958-67). Again the performances are impeccable, going so far as to take in an 11½-minute "St. Louis Blues" from Carnegie Hall. But if you really want a truly impressive introduction to this musician, pass the This Is releases by and save up your bread for the Time Signatures box, which will give you all you need.

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