Toshiko Akiyoshi

Salted Ginko Nuts

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The Toshiko Akiyoshi-Lew Tabackin Orchestra's first few recordings were made for RCA (usually released first in Japan and then later in the U.S.) but, after that association ended in 1978, most of the big band's recordings ended up being released by their own private Ascent label. The orchestra (based in Los Angeles) was one of the finest big bands of the era, as can be heard on this superior outing with Akiyoshi on piano, Tabackin displaying very different styles on tenor and flute, altoists Gary Foster and Dick Spencer, and trumpeter Bobby Shew. The leader's arrangements reflect both her roots in swinging bop and her Asian heritage. Highlights of the excellent set are "Chasing After Love" (based on "Lover"), the lyrical "Elusive Dream," and "Son of Road Time."

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