Playin' for Keeps draws on inspirations spanning from Tin Pan Alley to bossa nova to the British Invasion to forge a soul-jazz groove with its own distinct sensibility. Though rooted in bop, Bunky Green embraces both pop and avant-garde idioms as well, channeling his myriad influences to create a soulful and lithe sound with an impressive command of space and time. Bassist Cleveland Eaton, pianist Willie Pickens, and drummer Harold Jones are all in fine form throughout, clearly relishing the indelible melodies of selections like "The Shadow of Your Smile" and "Yesterday." Green's edgy, forceful alto is nevertheless the focal point, navigating the material with skill and finesse.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Jason Ankeny