I Didn't Know About You

Archie Shepp

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I Didn't Know About You Review

by Steve Loewy

A strong effort by Shepp, who is reunited with pianist Horace Parlan and joined by bassist Wayne Dockery and drummer George Brown for a an eight-track set recorded in Germany. The highlight is clearly the sole track with Parlan in which they perform Monk's "Ask Me Now" both effectively and emotionally. The version of "Go Down Moses (Let My People Go)" is a winner for Shepp's glorious baritone vocals and his saxophone solo. The excellent choice of tunes (including Duke Ellington's "I Didn't Know About You," Todd Dameron's "Hot House," and Bird's "Now the Time") presents Shepp in a fine light, where he blows both tenor and alto saxophones. Some of the pieces, such as Shepp's "Party Time," are less than perfect and the saxophonist's vocals on "The Good Life" are only average, but overall, Shepp and the quartet are a pleasure to hear.

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