Cedar Walton

Roots

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For the second straight time (and for his second Astor Place release), pianist Cedar Walton sticks to his own compositions for this recording. What is different from his debut on the label is that, in this case, many of the songs have been around awhile, including his classic, "Bolivia," "When Love Is New" and "Mode for Joe." Walton and his trio (bassist Ron Carter and drummer Lewis Nash) are joined by a five-man horn section (which includes trumpeter Don Sickler), percussionist Ray Mantilla and, on three songs apiece, a featured guest: tenor saxophonist Joshua Redman, trumpeter Terence Blanchard and/or guitarist Mark Whitfield. Everyone plays up to par (Redman, in particular, is in fine form), and overall, this is a solid, modern hard bop date that reaches its potential.

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