Buddy Rich


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Richcraft pairs Buddy Rich with arranger Ernie Wilkins, yielding the most soulful and swinging set of the drummer's Mercury tenure. Wilkins' bold, exuberant arrangements keep the spotlight squarely on Rich while also making the utmost of the session's roll call of A-list players (Phil Woods, Harry "Sweets" Edison, and Benny Golson among them) -- unlike so many lesser Rich dates, the drums never obliterate the other instruments in their path. Credit the name above the title here as well, of course -- Rich's drumming boasts an economy on par with its trademark energy, and songs like "Yardbird Suite" and "From the Sticks" positively crackle with excitement.

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