Jim Brock

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Pasajes Review

by William Ruhlmann

Percussionist Jim Brock seems to have put this blowing session together as an opportunity for him to play with Mel Lewis, whom he had met working with the Glenn Miller Orchestra. But it is more than just a busman's holiday for drummers. In fact, it reflects the eclecticism of a musician whose resumé includes work with rock, pop, jazz, R&B, blues, country, folk, and new age stars. Dick Oatts provides most of the flute work as the tunes veer off stylistically after the opener, "Awakenings," which sounds like it could have been on a Native American album. Thereafter, there are hints of new age, free jazz, big band, and Latin music, sometimes on the same track. The album's purpose comes into focus on "Reunion," a percussion duet between Brock and Lewis that was improvised and that often sounds like the backing track for a Santana song. Issued on a small label in 1985, Pasajes didn't have much chance commercially, but it has attracted its adherents over the years, and in 2002 Gaff Music gave it a CD reissue.

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