Mark Sherman

Family First

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While the individual solos on vibraphonist Mark Sherman's Family First are impressive, as are his six originals, it is the blend between Sherman and trumpeter/flugelhornist Joe Magnarelli that really makes this a distinctive and special disc. The lead voices often think in similar ways, as does pianist Allen Farnham, who contributed "Lazy Autumn." Some of the music is reminiscent of Bobby Hutcherson in the 1970s, but other parts are quite original while being tied to at least the outer stretches of hard bop. Chances are that none of the originals will catch on as future standards but they definitely inspire these musicians to play at their most creative within modern straight-ahead jazz. Recommended.

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