Richard Carr

String Vibrations

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Violinist Richard Carr is primarily a swing musician, but he resists molding himself to any one school of jazz violin, though the influence of several greats can he heard in his playing. He has had few opportunities to record as a leader, and when they've come, his albums have been on smaller labels that don't get the attention of many jazz broadcasters or the jazz-buying public. But this Progressive LP is one worth seeking, because Richard Carr & the Pro Bow Trio were obviously in high gear throughout the making of this album. Guitarist John Babioan and bassist Mark Pucci are strong soloists and capable accompanists. Drummer Alan Dawson is easily the best-known musician on the date, but this is a rare opportunity to hear him exclusively on vibes. Unlike the heavier attack he used when doubling on the instrument when he recorded with Jaki Byard in 1965, Dawson tones it down to complement Carr's often subtle but consistently swinging arrangements of gems like "Lester Leaps In," "Just Squeeze Me," and "Perdido." Babioan adds a blistering solo to the cooking "Softly, As in a Morning Sunrise." Carr especially shines with his moving interpretation of pianist Bill Evans' melancholy ballad "Time Remembered," which omits Dawson. Highly recommended.