Various Artists

Jazz for When You're Alone [32 Jazz]

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The 32Jazz label, under the leadership of Joel Dorn, continues to release compilations designed to fit a particular mood or state of being. Thus there have been albums as Jazz for a Rainy Afternoon, Groove Jammy, and Songs That Made the Phone Light Up. Now we have an album dedicated to being alone, not loneliness as Dorn explains his in liner notes. But with this play list, the line between the two gets really blurred. Whatever, this is a comprehensive collection of tracks by the top jazz luminaries for albums they cut for the now defunct Muse label and all of them are outstanding regardless of the mood you're in. The Sonny Stitt performance of "Sweet and Lovely" is one of the album's highlights as his sax works in, out, under, and through the piano of Duke Jordan and Sam Jones' bass. The credits list Stitt playing a soprano, but it's the alto he has in his hands for introspective blowing of this classic standard. Wallace Roney is the ostensible leader on "Lost." But his Miles Davis-like trumpet is subordinated to the classical oriented piano of Jacky Terrasson who penned this song. Donald Byrd, sounding even more like Miles than Roney, is united with Joe Henderson for a ruminative rendering of his "That's all There Is to Love." A memorable track is Houston Person's "Everything Happens to Me." Not only does Person's Ben Webster influenced tenor fit nicely with the tune's theme, but there's major soloing by Cecil Bridgewater's muted trumpet and the under recorded Stan Hope piano. The quintessential "alone" song, Thelonious Monk's "'Round Midnight," has been assigned to major electric guitar improviser Larry Coryell who gets considerable assistance along the way from Stanley Cowell's piano. Phil Woods creates a vision of a summer ending with "The Summer Knows" as his engages in musical discussion with bass player Richard Davis. Woods, and all the other artists on this album, are in fine fettle resulting in another superior compilation from jazz impresario Dorn's 32Jazz label.

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