Leonard Hochman

Manhattan Morning

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Veteran tenor-saxophonist Leonard Hochman is actually less known than his sidemen (pianist Kenny Barron, bassist Harvie Swartz, drummer Victor Lewis and vibraphonist Joe Locke) on this CD. Hochman, who was musically active back in the 1950's before spending much of his life outside of jazz, returned to the creative music scene in the early 1990's and proved to still be in his musical prime. On his second recording as a leader, Hochman on tenor at various times hints at Stan Getz, Lester Young and Dexter Gordon while displaying a solid tone of his own. His bop-oriented bass clarinet (heard at its best dueting with bassist Swartz on "The End Of A Beautiful Friendship") is featured on half of the selections and he shows that Eric Dolphy's approach is not the only way to improvise on the underrated and colorful instrument. Other highlights include Hochman's moody "Manhattan Morning," a warm rendition (on bass clarinet) of "I Apologize" and such obscure gems as Art Pepper's "Tynan Time" and Dexter Gordon's "Cheesecake." Vibraphonist Locke's lyrical playing is an added plus on the ballads. This fine modern mainstream date is easily recommended.

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