Archie Shepp

Lover Man

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Shepp has been criticized for his more commercial ventures such as this, but many will enjoy its accessibly light charm. Most of the numbers are standards, including "My Funny Valentine," "Lover Man," and "Lush Life," and are performed by the saxophonist backed by a solid rhythm section. Dave Burrell is wonderfully deft on piano, and he is given ample opportunity to interact with Shepp. Annette Lowman sings on several numbers, and she adds just the right touch and phrasing. Shepp is in somewhat less than perfect form, but he is clearly enjoying himself. There is a touch of a blues and R&B feel that adds to the ambiance. Unlike some of Shepp's other ventures, there are no attempted serious statements made -- only relaxing, good, swinging jazz that lifts the spirits or touches the soul, if only just a bit.

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