The L.A. 4

The Concord Jazz Heritage Series

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Back in the mid-'50s, altoist-flutist Bud Shank and acoustic guitarist Laurindo Almeida collaborated and recorded music that anticipated bossa nova. In the early '70s, they came back together as co-leaders of the L.A. Four, a group also including bassist Ray Brown and drummer Shelly Manne. After two albums, Jeff Hamilton succeeded Manne. The L.A. Four's eight Concord albums are all represented on this 1998 retrospective, which has 11 selections in all. The music ranges from light Brazilian jazz and ballads to a couple of swingers; highlights include "Carioca Hills," "Rado's Got the Blues," "Carinhoso," and "I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart." This was a near-classic band, and its overview is satisfying.

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