Roni Ben-Hur

Keepin' It Open

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A superior straight-ahead guitarist who can swing as hard as anyone, Roni Ben-Hur alternates jazz standards with some unusual material on Keepin' It Open, his fifth CD as a leader. Heading a sextet that also features fine solos from trumpeter Jeremy Pelt and pianist Ronnie Mathews, Ben-Hur explores an Israeli folk song ("Eshkolit"), the Spanish piece "Andaluza," "Recado Bossa Nova," and two of his originals in addition to three well-known pieces, Elmo Hope's "One Second Please" and Thelonious Monk's "Think of One." Everything works well and there is not a slow moment throughout this enjoyable outing. Recommended.

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