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Bouncing With Bud and Phil: Live At Yoshi's (Live)

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Album Review

It must have been a life's ambition for bebop disciple Bud Shank to make an album with the title "Bouncing With Bud." But when he finally got the chance, Shank gladly shared the title with his co-star, Phil Woods, in their first official recording together. Both still sound pretty spry and inventive — Woods was 73 and Shank was 78 when this was made — and it's not too difficult to tell the two alto players apart even without knowing which stereo channel they are playing on. Shank is usually blunter, more in-your-face, while the slightly mellower-toned Woods is more attuned upon the soul side of bop, with dashes of wailing Johnny Hodges and Benny Carter on Carter's "Summer Serenade." Pianist Mike Wofford gets ample solo room on every tune, while Bob Magnusson on bass and Bill Goodwin on drums fulfill their roles squarely in line with the tradition. Undoubtedly the catchiest number here is George Cables' "Helen's Song," equipped with an instantly memorable opening riff. Recorded live at Yoshi's in Oakland after some initial cruise and festival dates, this is an old-fashioned, friendly mainstream date with hardly a whiff of the cutting session about it; both players are comfortable within their shared heritage and don't have to prove anything to each other. The album was released in compatible SACD form but in stereo only and without much audibly significant improvement over CD. ~ Richard S. Ginell, Rovi

Bouncing With Bud and Phil: Live At Yoshi's (Live), Bud Shank Quartet
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