Howard Roberts

The Real Howard Roberts

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Most of guitarist Howard Roberts' recordings through the years (particularly a long string for Capitol in the 1960s) were quite commercial, featuring brief versions of current pop tunes. A versatile studio player, Roberts finally had an opportunity in 1977 to record some no-nonsense, straight-ahead jazz. This set (reissued on CD) matches Roberts in a quartet with pianist Ross Tompkins, bassist Ray Brown, and drummer Jimmie Smith playing some standards (including Herbie Hancock's "Dolphin Dance," "Gone With the Wind," and "Angel Eyes"), Michael Franks' "Lady Wants to Know," and Brown's "Parking Lot Blues." This is one of the few examples of Howard Roberts showing what a strong jazz player he could be.

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