Bob Berg

Another Standard

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The first collection of standards by soprano and tenor saxophonist Bob Berg, 1997's Another Standard has a track listing as uninspired as its title. Seriously, there should be a permanent moratorium on new versions of "Summer Wind," "It Was a Very Good Year," "You and the Night and the Music," and especially "Michelle." (Although he does at least get credit for not choosing the even hoarier "Yesterday.") Berg, a supremely tasteful and occasionally inspired soloist, plays well throughout, with some particularly nice tenor work on "My Man's Gone Now" (from Porgy and Bess); he maintains some of the credibility light jazz saxophonists lost when Kenny G appeared. The arrangements are lightly swinging, with a refreshing lack of electric piano or bass, and there's nothing really wrong with the album, it's just got an unshakeable air of "been there, done that." Start with one of Berg's albums of originals instead.

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