Sonny Fortune

You and the Night and the Music

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Although always a bit underrated, Sonny Fortune has been a powerful alto saxophonist since at least the early '70s. His style, while modal-based, is flexible enough to stretch from bop to free. On this quartet date with pianist George Cables, Fortune mostly sticks to familiar standards, other than the two originals. While he plays with plenty of fire on the uptempo tunes such as "Sweet Georgia Brown" and "Bebop," it is on the ballads and slower material that he really excels. Fortune's lyrical and thoughtful style communicates at its best on a number such as "Charade" or "Besame Mucho," where he gets to play with space and make each note count. Recommended.

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