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It's All In the Game

Eric Alexander

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Album Review

Over the dozen years since his debut recording as a leader, Eric Alexander has developed into one of the most important tenor saxophonists of his generation. Joined once again by one of his favorite pianists, Harold Mabern, along with bassist Nat Reeves and drummer Joe Farnsworth, Alexander kicks off this studio affair with a gritty hard bop treatment of "Where or When." "It's All in the Game" dates from the early part of the 20th century (written by future Vice President Charles Dawes), yet this is hardly a dated melody, as Alexander gives his best with a lush ballad treatment, while Mabern (who suggested the tune) incorporates subtle hints of gospel into his provocative solo. Thelonious Monk's "Ruby, My Dear" is revamped with a delightful brisk setting, while a Latin-flavored arrangement of the R&B hit "Where Is the Love" also transforms it into something new. Alexander's originals are equally enjoyable. "Typhoon 11" mixes a samba flavor with post-bop, with Mabern sounding at times like McCoy Tyner, while the tense blues "Open and Shut" would have been a perfect contribution to the repertoire of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers. Eric Alexander is a clear winner with It's All in the Game.

Biography

Born: 1968 in Galesburg, IL

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

A fine straight-ahead jazz saxophonist, Eric Alexander grew up in the state of Washington. He initially attended Indiana University, studying classical music as an altoist. However, he soon discovered jazz, switched to the tenor, and transferred to William Paterson College in New Jersey. After graduating, he moved to Chicago and gained important experience touring with Charles Earland while also becoming a fixture in local clubs. In 1991, Alexander placed second at the Thelonious Monk Institute's...
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It's All In the Game, Eric Alexander
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  • 64,00 kr
  • Genres: Jazz, Music
  • Released: 16 April 2006

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