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Floating Jazz Festival Trio (Live Recording, 1995)

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Album Review

Recorded on the S.S. Norway during the 1995 Floating Jazz Festival, this outing reunites pianist Junior Mance with bassist Keter Betts (they both played together with Dinah Washington in the 1950s) and his regular drummer of the period, Jackie Williams. Mance has always been a superior blues pianist but one who can also play very effective bop and swing, always with his own brand of soul. On two of the selections, a medium-tempo "Three Little Words" and "Blues Alley," tenor saxophonist Benny Golson guests, fitting in very easily with the group. With nearly half of the selections being blues at a variety of tempos and the remainder of the program (taken from three different sets) being superior standards, Junior Mance and his sidemen are heard throughout in enthusiastic and swinging form.


Born: 25 January 1929 in Philadelphia, PA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Benny Golson is a talented composer/arranger whose tenor playing has continued to evolve with time. After attending Howard University (1947-1950) he worked in Philadelphia with Bull Moose Jackson's R&B band (1951) at a time when it included one of his writing influences, Tadd Dameron on piano. Golson played with Dameron for a period in 1953, followed by stints with Lionel Hampton (1953-1954), and Johnny Hodges and Earl Bostic (1954-1956). He came to prominence while with Dizzy Gillespie's globetrotting...
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