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Swiss Nights, Vol. 1

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Album Review

The first of three volumes taken from the 1975 Zurich Jazz Festival features tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon (with his reliable sidemen pianist Kenny Drew, bassist Niels Pedersen and drummer Alex Riel) stretching out on "Tenor Madness," "Wave," "You've Changed" and "Days of Wine and Roses." All of the performances are at least ten minutes long and there are some rambling moments, but in general, the music is quite rewarding. This was one of Dexter Gordon's prime periods.


Born: 27 February 1923 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s

Dexter Gordon had such a colorful and eventful life (with three separate comebacks) that his story would make a great Hollywood movie. The top tenor saxophonist to emerge during the bop era and possessor of his own distinctive sound, Gordon sometimes was long-winded and quoted excessively from other songs, but he created a large body of superior work and could battle nearly anyone successfully at a jam session. His first important gig was with Lionel Hampton (1940-1943) although, due to Illinois...
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